Feeling a little off this morning when I woke up, I thought if this wasn't a 700 pts Team race I would just sleep in. But I pre-registered and looked forward to a short race with fun people. I really like my team and look forward to team events so I went.
It was supposed to rain, but with the warm temps, that was actually a good thing. I tend to run well in the rain. I brought my Senna hat, which I love to have a good excuse to wear. Senna was a Formula 1 racing car driver who was very good at racing in the rain.
The race is fast and flat. Elites are lured in with the promise of lots of prize money. The 10k was won with a time of 33:07 (5:20 pace)... and that was just the women's race. The men's race was won in 29 flat (4:40 pace). Mortals are lured in with promise of a good raffle. I won a $25 gift certificate to a restaurant. Stupid stuff like that makes me happy :)
So we start off in the rain. There is not much to say about the course except despite many reporting it measuring long (btw 6.35-6.5) many still manage to run well here. It is city street with lots of turns, I believe with one teeny incline in mile two that is really not an issue. The rest of the course is just fast.
I did not take off super fast because I already felt slow and I didn't want the race to turn into a death march when I ran out of steam. Rather I wanted a chance to finish fast and feel good at the end.
I was also worried I would slip since I just took a new pair of T7's (racing flats) out of the box this morning and I wondered if the brand new shoes would be a little slick on the wet roads. After losing my car in the parking deck when returning to it with my bib and t-shirt (yes, seriously I did) and after freaking out for few minutes until I found it, thereby allowing me to change into my racing flats, I didn't get as much time for a warm up as as I would have liked. As a result, the shoes were still brand spanking new as I stood at the start.
Just before the start I adjusted my laces and clearly failed to do a good job b/c at about .5 miles in, one came undone. I immediately started mumbling profanity to myself, apparently loud enough for others to hear (sorry), while trying to pull over through a massive amount of runners all moving at a 6:30 pace, so I could stop to fix my act of brilliance.
It was really only a few seconds of wasted time and before I knew it, I had caught back up with many I had been running with.
Running in the rain feels so nice, but when it stopped raining it became overwhelmingly humid. My asthma does not do well in humidity (despite most people asthma having the opposite experience). My chest hurts and I don't fell like I can inhale enough air fast enough. I end up making whooping or other odd noises that helps but makes me sound ridiculous. I learned that if I fight the noises I run slower, so I just do it and try to run as fast as I can. It is all very painful and I have just learned to deal with it.
I tried to find a comfortable rhythm and something that I could get faster from which, with the exception of mile 5, is just what I was able to do.
At 3 miles to go, I could see my friend Jim up ahead and I was wondering if I could catch up. He ran an awesome race two weeks ago, so I was not so sure, but I wanted to try. It took about 2 miles for me to catch up to him which happened exactly as we approached the tracks for some trams.
Generally the trains are stopped during the race, or at least I assume they were b/c I never noticed this as a problem in the past. Today, I could see one tram moving across the race course, hear an officer telling people to stop, while signally for the second tram to stop which it did. I am not sure how long they were stopped for.
I was still running full speed as I approached the tracks, just as I caught up to Jim. Originally, in my mind, I imagined that if I did catch up to Jim we would end up pushing each other through the last mile. But the tram got me all worked up and since I was approaching the tracks just as the trams were stopping, I was able to blast over the tracks (unfortunately passing a handful of faster runners who had to stop)
I had made a push to pick up speed that was so hard that I just went with the pace. My chest hurt, my wheezing was horrible, I grabbed a cup of water and just tried to run that last mile as fast as I could. I was passed by a girl who was moving well and I tried to stay with her but just wasn't able to. I was already running as fast as I could. I hoped to keep her in range so by the last few tenths I could go for it, but when the last few tenth came I had nothing more to kick with. However that entire last mile was the fastest of the race so regardless of who passed me, I am very proud of what I was able to do.
Mile 1 7:04
Mile 2 6:56
Mile 3 6:50
Mile 4 6:42
Mile 5 6:47
Mile 6 6:28
Last .2 2:00
Time 42:46 (6:53 pace)
OA place: 162/1354