Bradley Harris

Race Report - Carver Cranberry 5 Miler

2012 USATF-NE Grand Prix Race #5

  • Goal: Survival
  • Result: 31:31

Up until the week before I thought sub-30 minutes would be very doable for this race. Then I spent most of the last week battling a nasty chest cold. Skipping this race altogether would have been a perfectly reasonable thing to do. However since one of my goals for the year is to run the entire USATF-NE Grand Prix, I decided I would get there and crawl across the finish if I needed to.

One of hardest things for me when I get a bad cold is the lack of sleep. I had already been awake coughing for most of the the previous few nights. I took some cold medicine on Friday night and hoped for the best. I did manage to notch my best night of sleep for the week but 6am still came fast on Saturday morning. After collecting the traditional doughnuts and coffee, we hit the road for Carver. It was about an hour drive and we arrived at shortly after 8 for the 9am start. On the way down I realized I had forgotten my watch. Usually racing without a watch would make me very uncomfortable. Today I was kind of relived. It was certainly the right day to not worry about time and just run on feel. After number collection I hit the restroom and met some SRR team mates for a warmup. Before we headed out Tim H. said to me: “Wow! You are doing a warmup? If I were sick I’d just be lying down before the start.” I replied, “I figure the warmup will do one of two things. Either it will make me feel better. Or it will just hurt in which case I’ll know what the race is going to be like.” It was mostly the latter. After the warmup I grabbed some more water and headed towards the start. I lined up a few rows behind the rest of the SRR guys since I was looking to take it easier. After the start I caught up with Tim at around the half mile point. He said, “If you are looking for an update, we are going to fast.” “That’s OK,” I said, “We’ll slow down eventually.” Tim swerved for the first water stop shortly after that. I took water too but missed the slowdown by taking from the last volunteer. That was the last I saw of Tim until after the finish. From here I could see a few fellow SRR’s strung out ahead and I figured I might be able to slowly pull them in. At mile 2 I made a decision. I was hurting but still moving at a decent clip. I decided for 3 more miles I would go as hard as I could to get it over with as fast as possible. I did manage to pass most of the familiar faces (or backsides as it were) over the next few miles (Martin V., Sean M., Diona F., and Kevin R.). I skipped all of the remaining water stops because I wasn’t that thirsty and drinking made my throat congested. As we made our way through the last mile I started to recognize the surroundings from our warmup and picked up the pace as much as I could. Not exactly a winning kick but I don’t remember anyone else passing me either. I was hoping that stopping running at the finish would feel better than it did. They did have some popsicles at the post race food table which fantastic. Having bettering my goal of finishing by posting a respectable time, I spent the remainder of the day on the couch.