Yesterday I woke up at the late hour of 7:30am to run the 2013 Mid-Winter 10 Mile Classic in Cape Elizabeth. There was definitely a moment getting out of bed this morning where I contemplated whether just to stay in bed or actually go run 10 miles in the chilly 24 degrees. I had told my coach a couple of weeks ago while I battling a nasty cold that I wasn’t planning on racing the race, but rather treating it as a long training run. She agreed that my fitness isn’t there to race it so I was content with that. Although, I really hate treating races as training events. My chiropractor asked me this week if I would really be able to not try to race it once I got going. I guess in the end I did semi-race it by trying to pass as many people as I could, but I know that I could run a lot faster than I did. But, atlas, my run fitness (and general fitness) suck at the moment.
I ran the race last year while sick and was one of the worst decisions I made. I thought I was going to pass out in a ditch half way through the race. You can read about that lovely race HERE. Luckily, this year I had my annual cold earlier than last year so I was feeling pretty darn good going into the race. However, I was running on a lack of sleep. I went out with some friends Friday night so that night involved lots of beer and going to bed at 2am only to get up by 7am and go teach my core class at the gym. I then worked one of my other jobs from 4-9:30pm so sleep was a bit lacking. I must say, I think my massive bout of carbo loading Friday night helped with my running on Sunday! 🙂
Now back to the race. It was cold and bit windy with snow flurries. I dressed warmly and prepared for the worst. I met up with Coach Ange and a few other TriMoxie athletes and also caught up with some lovely SheJAMs ladies.
At 9:45am the cannon went off and we were off. The first mile is mostly downhill and a bit bottlenecky. It was my second fastest mile of the day. Ha! Second mile is rather uneventful and then the hills start! I forgot how hilly this course really is! The Spurwink hills suck. There are about three of them all in a row and then you turn down a side street that is rather crappy. I survived the hills. Took little steps up and then pushed it on the downhills to make up time. I didn’t walk at all this year! I actually felt pretty light going up the hills, which is extremely unusual for me. Around mile 4 we hit the marsh and the wind picked up a bit. I was averaging around a 9:15-9:20 mile at this point and tried to rein it in slightly so I wouldn’t blow up later on in the race like the previously year. Right around the half way mile we hit the nasty little steep hill and I muscled my way up it and passed some people on my way. I hit the mile 5 water station and took my gel.
The rest of the course is rather flat-ish and with some up grades and some down grades. However, this is where the wind picks up and gets cold on 77. I decided to start picking up speed and negative split the course. I started focusing on people a head of me to pass. I managed to pass a bunch of people in the last few miles of the race. Right around mile 7-8 I started to feel slightly fatigued and my pace slowed. However, I checked my watch and decided that I wanted to make it under 1:35 so I picked up speed and pushed my little legs harder. Mile 9 is a long gradual up grade and then downhill to the finish line. I pushed it up the uphill portion and passed a lot of people and then finally hit the high school driveway and really pushed it the last 200 yards or so for a sprint finish.
Overall, I finished in 1:35:37. Didn’t quite make it sub-1:35, but I had almost a 10-minute PR from last year. I finished 459/611 overall, 195/298 women and 16/26 AG. I’ll take it. Certainly if I didn’t have to take 3+ months off from running this past fall then I think I could have fallen in the 1:25-1:30 area. But, it is what it is at the end of the day.
I finished my day by being semi-productive. I picked up a new trainer at my bike shop and then succeeded to pass out on the couch in front of the fire for a couple of hours.