My iPod – My Crutch & Sweetheart 4 Miler Race Review

Last Sunday (2/10) Jeff and I headed to Fredericksburg, Virginia to run the Sweethearts 4ever 4 Miler. The drive takes us a little over an hour – and with a 10am start, we had plenty of time. About 20 miles into the drive, horror swept over me as I realized I left my beloved iPod at home (this was a nightmare!). I felt sick to my stomach and probably would have cried had I been in the car alone. I really, really wanted to ask Jeff to turn around and go home so I could get it. How was I ever going to run without it!?


Pre-race freak out…

Way, way back in my running days (pre-iPod era), I ran without music and would just think and enjoy my run. Over the last several years (think I got my first iPod around 2005ish). I have become horribly dependent on running with music. One of my running friends told me recently that I had an unfair advantage because I ran with music…really? I tend to lose myself in the music…which I will admit is very fast paced and gets me pumped…and includes artists such as Pink, Maroon 5, Pit Bull, Usher, Flo Rida, Hot Chelle Rae, and Nicki Minaj…don’t judge me by my music – it makes me run fast! I also tend to randomly start singing during a run or a race – this drives Jeff completely crazy most of the time…and I do get some strange looks sometimes during races.


Listening to XM….getting motivated!

I was a nervous wreck by the time we got to the race. It was cold out and as we sat in the car waiting for the race to start, I listened to XM to get me motivated. Jeff shocked me by “taking one for the team” and saying he was going to run without his iPod too! Wow…crazy! I could tell he wasn’t looking forward to hearing me sing though! I briefly thought about sneaking back to the van as we were at the starting line and grabbing his iPod (still wonder if I could have gotten away with that)! We got fairly close to the start line and when the gun went off we took off as fast as we normally do. But about ¼ mile in I heard this awful sound…what the he#* was that? Ugh…it’s my breathing…am I dying?! Thank goodness it was only a 4-miler – I was having trouble focusing because I was having to listen to my breathing. My mind was racing, trying to repeat song lyrics in my head and quietly under my breath. It wasn’t working. Jeff and I ran side-by-side at a decent pace – then around mile 2 ½ we caught a man that sounded like he was struggling with every step, his loud breathing was making me mad! Jeff sped up and was gone – I struggled to get by the loud breather…and was so missing my poor little iPod at this point. The last mile seemed to take me forever…I can normally focus on picking off competitors as I race, but today…not so much.

I was surprised to see I was going to break a 30:00 when I saw the finish clock! I am satisfied with my time of 29:27, but still wonder if it would have been faster with my tunes?! I do think I run faster with music – so, yes…I now believe it is an advantage…for me anyway.


Our winnings!


We hung around for the results and I got another surprise as I realized I got 3rd place (out of 26) in my age group…score! We also registered for the couples division and won 2nd place (out of 65) and got a $50 gift certificate from J. Brian’s Tap Room – can’t wait to go here! This race was nicely organized; plenty of close parking; scenic course on a paved trail; and quick results!

I am so happy to be re-united with my iPod and vow to be more careful about packing my running items on race morning…oh, how I love you iPod!!!


Ahhhhhh!!! I missed you!!!!