My 2nd race in US was also exciting compared to my initial run a week ago. Although it was organized like a small village fun run, it included a half marathon which I was supposed to join. The simple race has no starting/finish line arch but only a timing mat wherein timing chips would be read to record the time of finishers at the end of the course.
My cousin registered me in 10K while she registered herself in 5K. A day before the race, we picked up our race kits in Tri-fitness Store in White Bear Lake, MN. We learned the venue will be in Bald Eagle Lake so we decided to locate the race route right there. We also realized that each category would have a different route but would have the same finish line. For 5K, runners will run along city roads before returning to Bald Eagle Lake. For 10K and 21K categories, it would be a run around Bald Eagle Lake which is more than twice larger than the Phalen Lake. To my mind, I found the route not only challenging but also thrilling as I would be running around big frozen lake surrounded with hills to climb.
On race day, with vast eagerness, I woke up early and made a decision to make this run as enjoyable and memorable as possible. I practically prepared for this race, physically (outfit included) and mentally because I would never know when will I be able to run again with this weather.
My aunt and uncle who are both very supportive of all my adventures, prepared my breakfast but I opted to take oatmeal only. However, on the second thought, I decided to eat also what they prepared so I took a slice of toasted wheat bread, fried egg and cheese. I really begged off to eat roasted chicken anymore. When I finished my breakfast, my cousin arrived driving her car. We dropped by her son to school when her hubby called up that he together with another cousin will follow us to the venue ridding their big bikes.
It was a great morning, no rain came as predicted a day before. The sun tried to shine but the weather was still very cold. We reached the Bald Eagle Lake after an hour drive from Eagan. When we got there, it was almost my starting time and there were no more 10K runners in the area. So I decided to proceed to the starting line which is almost 1K away from where we parked. I even forgot to pick up my timing chip in the registration area.
I was still far from the starting line when race officially started so I continued running and tried to increase my pace a bit. I began to pass one by one runner at the back of the pack. It was very cold but I perspired a lot, maybe because I was wearing four layers of clothing complete with thermal hat and thick red gloves. After 2 miles, I was thirsty but the water station was located on the 3rd mile mark only. To distract myself from thirst, I tried to catch up with a young Asian girl but she was fast in her steady pace. Then, I passed one Filipino looking man running with an American guy. When I overtook them, he asked me if I am a Filipino and when I responded positively he cheered me by saying “Go Ms. Philippines”. I knew he is a Filipino too but cannot converse in Tagalog. There were only three of us Asians in the race.
I ran ahead of the Filipino and his friend all throughout the route but on our last 100 meters, the two sped up and accelerated. I never realized that they did that because we were already approaching the finish line. I was still conserving my energy only to find out that after one more short turn, it was already the finish line. After I crossed the line, the little white beautiful girl gave me water and asked me to surrender my timing chip. I told her, I was not able to get it at the start of the race because I came late. With that, my time will not be recorded but I have my unofficial time which is still very good compared my other 10K runs.
My cousins and I took souvenir photos before proceeding to the give-away tables. Runners were treated with abundant bananas, bottles of water, and assorted chips. Each runner can take anything to his or her delight. It was like a family affair or picnic in the park with overflowing stuff.
After the race, we proceeded to the residence of Sosa Family in Burnsville City for our post race lunch. My aunt and uncle likewise followed. It was like a family reunion for two families in Minnesota. We were served with hot molo soup, ginataang kalabasa and sitaw with shrimps, chicken and pork barbeque, fried wanton, deep fried shrimp, and garlic chicken. For desert, we were treated with halo-halo with leche plan toppings prepared by my aunt. It was so heavy and filling. I enjoyed their company as well as the sumptuous lunch.
We ended the day by attending an anticipated mass in the St. John Neumann to thank the Lord for His many blessings most especially for the gift of family, relatives, good health, food, laughter and peace of mind.