3.23.2012

Race Report - Run 'til Your Green

All good things are worth waiting for, right?

I could have written this post immediately post-race last week but I am detail-focused and wanted to ensure I was given you the exact race time, not my estimation of what it was.

I had some major pre-race jitters for this race this year and it must be because I wanted to race well. I really, really wanted to break 24 minutes, which would be running less than an 8-minute mile. I wasn't entirely sure I could pull it off since I don't consider myself fast. I am more of a "slow and steady go the distance" kind of girl.

It was warm and windy pre-race and you could feel the fun and excitement. I met a virtual friend and it was nice to chat a bit face-to-face instead of through my blog, facebook, or Words with Friends. Shortly before the race the race director gave us the briefing and said we may be starting a wee bit late and that in five minutes we would be escorted to the start. I was getting too antsy to wait anymore and started walking over, with a few others, since I knew where to go. I got to the start, set my Nike+ app to be ready, and did a bit of dynamic stretching. I also drank a couple of small cups of water and was quite thankful there was some at the start. However, I really think it was just nerves making my mouth feel dry. It happens all the time....that and the incredible fear/urge that I should have gone to the bathroom one more time before the start. I am always fine though so once again, nerves. I am learning to ignore all those quirky signals.

Stretch of race course
Once we got the "okay" to go I started running strong but didn't let myself be pulled too much by some of those guys ahead of me....especially since I knew their past times and fully understood they run at warp speed. The head wind I experienced last year was back and I just hoped for a good wind against my back in the second half and kept running. I don't think I ever got it. I got to mile marker 1 at about the same time my GPS told me one mile and that I was running at 7'25" pace. Woah! That is fast for me. I told myself I could ease up a bit to make my goal with the idea of picking it up again in the final stretch. I didn't want to crash and burn and miss my goal. A few guys passed me and I tried to resist the urge to pass them back as I was passing other runners throughout the race.

Elevation Profile
I made the turnaround and got to mile marker 2 pretty quickly. I was listening to my playlist and knew what the songs meant in terms of pacing and pushing myself. However, when the push-it song came on I knew I was already doing so. My pace for the second mile was 7'49" and I was picking it up as much as I could. I passed one lady and kept on going but appreciated her telling me good job. I passed another and she got competitive and passed me right back. I let her go. I was running as best as I could. With the finish in sight that first lady passed me back. As much as I wanted to pass again, I was sick to my stomach. I was running as hard as I could and I knew that since I almost always can pull out the reserves when I see the finish....this time I couldn't. And you know what, part of me was glad I couldn't. Why? Because that meant I pushed myself every step of the way. I didn't take it easy anytime. I completed the 3 mile race in 23'02"! I made my goal and was ecstatic. I grabbed some water and remember that lady who passed me? I had to go tell her good job and confessed I just didn't have it in me to pass her again. We chatted and laughed.

On my walk back to the post-race party I felt good and reenergized. Funny how you can run so hard and feel so bad yet feel so good later. I even got a high five from a guy I guess I flew by. I appreciated the congrats and couldn't wait to see my family, who unfortunately couldn't be at the finish line. I enjoyed one cup of light beer (courtesy of the race), stayed for the awards (I always like clapping for those who place), and headed out to dinner with my family....and darling daughter talked me into the Fun Factory.

All in all, I am a very happy running mom. I reached my goal. My average pace was 7'36" and represents the fastest I have ever run in my life. Really, even in high school I was in the 8-range. I placed 10 out of the 77 female finishers and 44 out of all 144 finishers. It was a great run and I look forward to returning to this race next year, for my fourth consecutive year!

Today I am grateful for:
  • Proof that hard work pays off
  • Proof that things can get better with age
  • Proof that I am growing as a runner and becoming better at racing
  • Proof that I am blessed in life and no, I don't take one thing for granted
  • Proof that there are a lot of amazing people out there....don't be afraid to say hi

9 comments:

  1. Super awesome job! Hey what songs were you using to pump you?

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  2. Great job!!! congrats on the awesome PR and a great race. :)

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  3. Congrats on a speedy PR! That's exactly the PR I'm aiming for sometime this year or next!

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  4. Fantastic pace! Well done!

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  5. Wow, very fast race! Congrats on blowing your goal time out of the water!

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  6. Amaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaazing! Love the logo of the race too!

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  7. That is so amazing! I cannot imagine EVER running anywhere near your times. Awesome. And you look so cute in that green outfit, too. Love it.

    So happy that your race went so well and that you had such a great run and experience at and after, your event.

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  8. Very nice!!! Congratulations!

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  9. Speedy lady!! Awesome job! You did great and I'm glad you gave it all you had!

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