1:38:17 - 9:49 min per mile averageOverall 196/244
|It shouldn't look this hard at mile 2.|
Well, this was definitely a most unusual pre race evening. I had food from a place that I normally don't eat at, I had a beer* and a piece of birthday cake... Oh and a quesadilla for lunch.
* and was wishing all evening, that we don't have this race lined up, so I could have more than one beer
As you may already know, my stomach is funny while running sometimes... And when my stomach is not weird for real, I psych myself out until my stomach feels funny. To keep the mental drama as small as possible, I don't do the following things the day before a race: I don't drink my beloved coke zero (had one for lunch), I don't eat/ drink dairy products, I don't drink alcohol and I don't have cake/ donuts/ chocolate. Well, I managed to not follow every single pre-race rule that I set for myself.... Don't worry, I am not forshadowing any GI emergencies during the race, but it sure made for some interesting chatter in my brain.
We also stayed up way past our bedtime (we are old farts) and didn't prepare our race outfits. Well, good thing, that the race didn't start until 8.45am and the venue was just two miles from the house. That's always good.
So when we finally rolled out of bed, Terry cooked me a fried egg sandwhich (this might sounds funny, but it's actually a food that works good for me before runs) and we got our stuff together. I also checked the weather forecast and the day was going to start out chilly, but was supposed to warm nicely. I still decided to go with a sweater (only one layer is progress) and some 3/4 tights.... Spring is just around the corner! ;-)
We made it to the package pick-up just before the masses rolled in and spend the rest of the time chit-chatting the time away with our running friends.
Somebody said "GO" over a megaphone and off we were.... Actually, that "Gooooo" took me completely by surprise, but the race started right on time. With ice cubes on my feet for the first couple of miles. It took me a while to physically warmed up, but pace wise, I was doing pretty good. I figured, I might have a shot at doing really well in this race.
Starting at mile five, things started to get more labored and it sure doesn't help that in my opinion the roughest hills in the course also begin in mile five. I did a couple of power hikes up the hill and lost several people, I ran with so far. At the second aid station, I grabbed a cup of Gatorade, which is very unusual for me, but I felt like the fried egg sandwhich two hours earlier, probably didn't fuel me enough and my stomach felt a little funky, so I didn't want to eat my SportBeans. I walked through that aid station and walked until I finished my cup and felt a little better after that. The next couple of miles were rolling hills, which the downhill portion is always a lot of fun, but what comes down, must go up and the uphills didn't feel too awesome. Especially the long uphill passing the TR YMCA until Sunrift.
I was looking forward to the third aid station at mile 7 and more Gatorade, but found the aid station abandoned. So stomach or not (Seriously, I don't know, if my stomach funny feeling was all mental or not... It's hard to tell for me), I had to get some calories in me. I tried to open my bag of SportBeans, ripped off the flap only to see that the flap is gone, but the bag is still closed. I fumbled around with it a little and then gave up. At the mile marker 8, I was just plain hungry and fiddled with the bag until I finally got it open and stuffed some beans in my mouth. Mile 9 was the walk of death, my legs didn't respond at all, but instead of doing the run/walk thing, I slowed down as much as I needed to, to actually be able to keep on running/jogging. Mile 9 came in with a 10:55 split. Oh geez! But after that, I started to feel better again and clocked the last mile again at a sub 10 minute/ mile pace.
I did this race almost two minutes slower than last year and I am a little dissapointed about that. Especially because I think that I got faster in general compared to last year, but I just don't seemed to be able to translate the good training right now into good racing. I hope that next week at the MB half, things are going a little better for me.
What did we learn here? Fuel better, fuel earlier and open the nutrition bags before you even leave the house. Tthis way, you don't have to play around with your nutrition during the race.
Terry and Alex (from the relay team) waited at the finish line for me. We took off right away to the food tables and hung out for a little bit. We also did the early sign-up for the 11K trail race in May. They ran the special again, that you can sign up for 10 bucks that day. Sweet. After that, we got back home right away... The rest of the day, I was pretty useless and surprisingly sore.
This is a great race with a nice course. The size of the field is just what I like and we always see a lot of familiar faces out here. Of course it's super convienent for us, just minutes from the house. They had s/l shirts this year and gloves as goodies which is always nice. I believe there was also one more aid station on the course than last year which I also liked, even though I was carrying my bottle as usual. The only beef that I have is that there was nobody at the last aid station when I got there and there were also no filled cups sitting on the table ready to be grabbed, just in case the aid station volunteer had to leave his/her post for a moment.
But still, I will definitely do this race again next year, if it works with my schedule.