Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Race: Cherry Pit 10 Mile

This was a last minute addition to my "schedule". I can't really call it a schedule since it is more by the seat of my pants than anything and on top of that I'm not really a racer per se but more like a lolly gagger who enjoys trying to beat my self. I had decided that my training, or lack there of, could use a forced long run and I knew that I wouldn't walk in front of all those people.

I went in with no goals other than to finish. This was a training run for me. It was so much better than the added pressure of having to accomplish some feat. I started in the very back, there were literally 15 people behind me. I knew that there were some really fast people there including the Navy Marathon team so sticking to the back seemed like a fine plan.

Mile 1 (10:36): Once the race started I quickly realized that starting in the back is fine...if you want to run 11 min/miles. Passing was also a bear in the beginning since we were running on the shoulder of Rt. 2 and some groups were running 4 wide. At the end of the first mile the runners started to thin out a little bit and it was much easier to navigate through.

Mile 2-4 (9:54,9:49,9:36): Rolling hills along Rt. 2 with 1 water stop. I was carrying my UD Water Bottle so I passed the water stations. After Mile 1 I cut my mile times into the 9's so my goal was to take it as easy as possible. End of mile 4 was the beginning of a beautiful downhill section.

Mile 5&6 (9:30,9:36): Downhill and flat! Took the opportunity to let gravity do its work. Still feeling good about the pace I was at - didn't feel like I was pushing too hard and still had a lot to give. I remember being ecstatic that I hit halfway. There was one steep hill in the middle of mile 6 and I saw a couple of people walking that one.

Mile 7-9 (9:42,9:56,9:28): The hills were back and with a vengeance. According to my Garmin we gained 113 feet in mile 7. I'm used to running Kent Island which is as flat as they come. BUT I was unbelievably proud of myself - I passed people on the hills. My pace didn't falter because of the hills and not once did I think that I couldn't do it.

Mile 10 (9:25): This was my worst mental mile. I knew that I was almost done and it made the mile drag on - I kept looking and looking for the finish line! My legs still felt pretty good though and it was reassuring to know that even after that many miles I was still hitting my pace. And come to find out my quickest mile. Finish Time 1:38:09

Overall this race was a lot of fun. It was challenging, a great distance and put on by a great group (Annapolis Striders). The volunteers were wonderful and the police officers and reservists were eager to help when I discovered my car key disappeared somewhere along the way. I can feel the running spark coming back!

385 out of 539 overall
36 out of 48 in my division (Fem. 20-29)
142 out of 251 in females

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