Overall, I really liked this race and will do it again. I ended up with an 8k PR: 36:44. This is only because it was the first 8k I have ever run. Ha. I was 54th female out of 919; 6th in my age group, out of 116. I played it conservative but raced it with all my heart. I wish I was running faster but I have to be patient. The speed will come. I mean, 2 years ago I would never have imagined even running a 5k under a 7:30 pace much less an 8k! I feel proud of where I am and this race has given me some motivation to push a little harder. I am not as scared as I was 2 days ago. This race was a success in my book - my first negative split running on feel. That is a HUGE step for me. (See more below)
This was certainly a different kind of race than what I am used to - a new distance and at night. I didn't sleep well on Thursday night, so I was very excited to have an excuse to sleep in and be lazy on Saturday. It felt soooo good to stay in bed until 10am! I am not sure the last time that happened or when I will be able to do that again, so a savored every second of it. I didn't actually sleep until 10am. I was up at 5:45am, then again at 6:20am or so. I didn't think I was going to be able to fall back asleep and thought about getting up to go see some of my CAR teammates run the mile again, but I shut my eyes and the next time I opened them, it was 8am! I flipped on the TV and dozed for anther couple of hours. I got antsy at 10am and jumped in the shower. I lounged some more and decided it was time to get some food around 12:30pm. That would be my big meal for the day. We went to the Silver Diner where I got a veggie omelet, sprouted wheat toast and strawberries - easily digestible and nothing out of the ordinary. Perfect. After running a few errands after lunch, we headed back to lounge some more. The weather wasn't great on Saturday. It was kind of misty and rainy so I felt no guilt about wasting my day away. At 5pm, I was feeling very sluggish from doing nothing so I started foam rolling which led to some balance ball and core work. It felt great to get the blood flowing. I had my final snack before the race - a banana and some peanuts - and started to get ready. I stood outside for awhile to decide what to wear. Even though it was only about 70 degrees, it was still very humid. I decided on my CAR Mizuno Sports-bra top and then my Brooks glycerin shorts.
We got to the race site about 7:45pm. The area where I had to find my number, pick up my bib and t-shirt was kind of a crowded and confusing. I never get this. Event logistics is not rocket science. Maybe it's because I have been to a bazillion races or that I have managed events my entire career but it's not hard to set things up in a logical flow. My number was missing, and again this isn't my first rodeo so I always expect the worst and know what to do or who to talk to if something goes wrong. We started our warm up around 8:15pm. My teammates that ran this race are super speedy. Like, so speedy I doubted I would be able to keep up with them on my warm up but I did and I felt good. It was faster than I would normally warm up but I don't think that was a bad thing. I needed to get the blood flowing. We just did a quick 15 minutes on the last mile of the course and as we arrived back at the meeting spot, I was drenched with sweat. It was dark and misty, 70 degrees and sooooo muggy. But, I could not have asked for better conditions in mid-July. I got to the start line at 8:40. There was no seeding or pace groups in the corrals so I tried to find people that "looked" as fast as me. Ha. I was pretty nervous by then and then I saw 2 friendly faces - Melissa and Steve - CAR teammates who came to spectate. Just seeing them and talking to them for a bit calmed my nerves.
The national anthem played, the gun went off and the race started. I crossed the starting line about 14 seconds after the gun. I started my watch, but switched it over to the actual time function so that my pace and distance was not showing on the face, but still recording everything. I was going to run this based on feel. George told us that he would be at the 3/4 mile point, 2 mile mark and then at the finish. It is amazing how great it is to have someone give you encouragement, tips and something to think about on the course. I knew I was going to have to reign it in the first 2 miles. There were some nice hills on the first half of the course but nothing overwhelming. I was very thankful at that moment for my tough hill workouts. Ahh...this is why we do the hills! People were dropping like flies on the hills. I loved them and powered all the way to the top! In the stretch right before I saw George the second time, this silly tiny girl was playing some game with me. She kept sprinting about 20 feet in front me, then would wait for me to catch up, then sprint 20 feet in front of me again. This happened like 5 times. It was ridiculous. I was just watching her thinking, "Man, that looks like it's taking a lot of energy" I saw George and blasted past her. I knew he was going to tell me to kick it into gear at this point anyway. I never saw her again. The next mile was a blur but I kept passing people. Mile 4 was my least favorite. It was on the campus of Montgomery County Community College and consisted of weaving through a parking lot. I was glad to get on the final stretch. I was really happy that we ran most of the last mile on our warm up. Then, as we finally veered toward then finish line and I caught a glimpse of it, something clicked and I just took off. In that last .2 miles, I passed 5 women. I am not sure where that final kick came from, but I am happy it showed up! My mile splits:
1 - 7:36
2 - 7:25
3 - 7:21
4 - 7:12
5 - 7:10
Anybody see anything exciting in these numbers? (Besides the fact that I probably shouldn't have jogged that first mile?) Oh yes, that would be a negative split! My first negative split in a race - EVER. Hmm. Maybe there is something to this running based on feel thing. (More on that in a future post.)
This was a great start to my race season and really a great weekend for CAR overall. Check them out! CAR results for the week of 7/16.
This is going to be a fun and exciting Fall!!