I often forget how hard it is to race over the off season. Like it really hurts. Like ouch. Like to the guy that made me sprint at the end - I don't like you. But I did beat you. Because you WERE NOT passing me in the final 25 yards. But seriously, that hurt. ;)
I really had no idea what to expect today. Somewhere between 1:25 and 1:30? When I was a runner I could pretty much predict down to the minute what my race times were going to be. Running workouts gave good indications. But now my running workouts don't tell me much. Mostly because I always seem to do them when I'm really tired and often they have very specific paces/HR goals and aren't "all out". Anyway, my half marathon PR is 1:23:35 which I consider to be one of my strongest stand alone running PRs. Oh, did I mention that PR was set on a "downhill" course? Yeah, so it's kind of like saying your half IM PR is how fast you went in Clearwater (ie: not really a "true" PR). Also, it was set in October (2 years ago?) when I was pretty much in tip top shape. So I knew I likely wouldn't run that fast - but I was hoping to be within 2-3 minutes.
Why does 6:15 pace feel so easy at the start of a race but not at the end? This is the question I asked myself a couple times around mile 10. :) I started comfortably and went through the first several miles in the 6:15-6:20 range. Mile 5 somehow ended up being just a hair over 6 minutes but I think that was because I was chasing a women in front of me. From there, we climbed a relatively large hill and my pace settled down some into the 6:30-6:35 range. The course is a big lollipop (after an out and back at the start) so when I started heading back towards home I was in a happy place. Then we climbed back up over that big hill and the wind (OH THE WIND) was just crushing me and then I went to a very NON-happy place. Not going to lie, the last 2-3 miles were rough business! But I suspect that's how races should feel. :)
Doing the math I realized I could break 1:26 which I very much desired. So I tried desperately the last mile to MOVE MOVE MOVE! It wasn't until a guy came up behind me and tried to pass me with about 1/4 mile left that I was finally able to GOOOOOOOOOOO. But I couldn't drop him. With about 25 yards to go he tried to pass me again. OH NO YOU DON'T! I think we pretty much finished in a dead sprint. Not sure who won but I'm calling it. :)
|I know it looks like I'm trying to elbow him out of the way but honestly, that's just the way I run. ;)|
It was a fun morning because my parents came. Dad was picture taker and mom did the 5K Walk! And then we went to the HHI Diner for breakfast. YUM!
|The two racers. My mom and I! :)|