Luckily, there is an American tradition that provides some solace in a ingesting 4,000 calories in one sitting: the Thanksgiving Day Turkey Trot. I have no idea how it started and am too lazy to search the interwebs, but the thought goes that if you spend some time Thanksgiving morning to run a 5K (and burn ~300 calories), you can then justify whatever debauchery you engage in the rest of the day. Lancaster, California, where my fiancee lives, is no different. Sponsored by the local YMCA, this event is as hometown as hometown can get: there were no markings on the course (which resulted in me running much longer than expected), the bibs were two-hole punched index cards, and your time was set by the announcer as you crossed the finish line. But still, at the end of the day, it was actually a lot of fun.
I came into the race with no real expectations. I ran a 60K last weekend, I have a 50K this weekend, and I haven't done any speedwork in months. On top of that, I only traveled with my trail shoes so ended up running in NB MT101s across city streets. However, this is a small-town race, so there is always the hope of something good happening.
As to be expected, there was a mad dash at the start, with dozens of 12-year olds sprinting ahead of me for the first half-mile. Once they became gassed, the lead group became a tall guy who ran in college, two high school xc kids, and myself. The actual runner in the group decided to take off and breeze through a sub 16 min 5K if you take out the fact we all ran somewhere around 3.4 miles. I was still running with the high schoolers around mile three when there's a certain amount of innate pride that kicked in - I just can't let myself be beat by a 17 year old. I felt a little bad about outkicking him in front of his friends, parents, and grandma (I met them all afterwards and they were really nice), but that feeling faded pretty quickly...
Finished in a very slow 19:20ish, good for 2nd place overall. There was even a local newspaper quote from me but somehow the Antelope Valley Press decided to put all of its articles behind a pay wall (even NYT gives 15 free articles!)
Picked up a pain on the top of my foot, though, which is unfortunate. One week until my last major race of the year!