I woke up at 5am, I needed to get to the venue by 6am to pick up my packet. I should have picked it up on Saturday, but we played Rock Band with friends instead. I am still happy with that decision. Jumped into my clothes, layers of course, but I was running in my new Skirt Sport tank and pants. I know you might think I'm crazy for running in a sleeveless shirt when it's 52 degrees outside, but I knew I'd get hot and the temperature would rise as the race went on, so I braved bare shoulders.
The race only started about 5 minutes late. We were off! The first few miles were gradually uphill. I didn't really realize it, although I wanted to stop running a few times during the first 2.5 miles, I didn't. Well I did. I stopped to stretch out my right IT band.
Around mile 1 I shot a Gu. Yes I know this is only a 6 mile race, but I had 8 on my schedule and I was just going to add those on to my race, so eat it. Around mile 2.5-3 I started to get into a groove. In fact, that exact thought popped into my head. "Hey, Yas, you're starting to get into a groove. Maybe you are really a middle distance/endurance athlete." I almost stopped dead in my tracks at that. But I kept going as I was trying to make out the graphic on the back of someone's shirt. (it was the Orange County Crime Lab running team. They had a chalk outline of a guy breaking the "Police Line Do Not Cross" tape. Hilarious).
I don't know what made the back half of the 10K go so well. I did get into a groove and was able to ignore my IT band, ankle, and all other signs of exertion. I'm not sure if this was me being in great mental and physical condition or the course that gradually sloped downward from mile 3 to the finish or just the caffiene from the GU starting to kick in. At mile 3 or 4 or maybe 3.43 I shot my second Gu (remember people I'm running 8 miles).
It was still nippy, but I wasn't feeling any of it. In fact, I was thinking maybe I should have worn shorts or a skirt, but I wasn't uncomfortable. I was very happy with my apparel choice. The Skirtsports cleavage alley pocket was awesome. No fumbling in my nutrition (read glorified fanny) pack.
I did end up having a kick to sprint down the chute, but I kept it in check, I still had 2 more miles left! I stopped my watch, tore off the bottom of my number, grabbed a water bottle, and headed back down the outside of the chute and back on the trail. The 2 miles (or 1.8 really, who wants to be an overachiever?) were me back tracking a mile up the race course and turning around. They were my slowest, as they were more a cool down than an extension of the race.
I had a great time at this race. A real sense of accomplishment and finding myself as a runner. I came to terms with the fact that I might run a marathon one day, I might do a 1/2 and full Ironman one day. But being a middle distancer isn't anything to sniff at. In fact my runner's world issue tells me it's okay!
Also, check out my kick ass 10K time: 66:31. It's an ave pace of ~10:44/mile. I was hoping to run this race at an 11:00 pace. Most of the fast miles came on the last 3-4 miles, given that the course sloped downward, it was made for negative splits.
I'm pretty sure I'll make room for Santa every year.