Not only was this a weekend full of beautiful weather, but also a pretty stellar race if I do say so myself. The stars had aligned for me on Sunday morning because I honestly don’t know what got into my when I….
PR’D WITH AN INCONCEIVABLE TIME OF 1:54:32!!
Seriously though, If anyone would have told me that I was going to take a whopping (and it is whopping in the running world) 8 minutes off my previous PR time I would have scoffed in their face. All this effort comes at a price however, and I currently feel like an old lady in need of a hip replacement, my calves are remarkably tight, my knee hurts, and I have the most heinous blister on the bottom of my foot. The taste of sweet victory is marred with battle wounds.
Now, for a little race recap…
Where: Oak Ridge, TN
Date & Time: November, 18th 2012, 8:00 AM
Weather: Cold. On my way to the race, the temperature was a finger numbing 34. Luckily there was not a cloud in the sky so that took away some of the bitter chill while running. I started off with an old throw away sweatshirt on that I figured I would toss before I started. I kept in on for the first mile before casting it off on the side of the road. I also ended up keeping my gloves on the whole time.
Race Time: 1:54:32 – Wow, it’s weird typing 1’s rather than 2’s… 🙂
Worst Mile: 12 – I’m not quite sure why, but mile 12 was the only one where I actually became exhausted. It was pretty hard for me to move my feet up the final hill and I was running on empty.
Fuel: A delicious combination of half a peanut butter power bar and banana. Also a few sips of hot coffee to warm me up and get me moving. I had a pouch of goo in my pocket but I never ended up feeling like I needed it as each fuel station had Gatorade.
How did I feel: Cold. Really cold. I had on the aforementioned sweatshirt but beneath only a short sleeve tech shirt and mid length running tights. This proved to be perfect, but not until the first mile in. After that I felt good. I had mentally and physically been preparing myself for this race for a few weeks now so I just had it set in my mind that I was going to run the best possible race I could and I never slowed down.
Best part of the race (besides the finish): I looked down at my watch every mile to check my splits as the miles grew, I kept surprising myself with how fast I was going. The best part was when I absolutely knew I would get in under two hours (around mile 10) and it was just a matter of how fast it would actually be. One of the greatest feelings a runner can have is pushing his or her body to the limits and being amazed and surprised at the things you can do.
Worst part of the race: The small hill right before the finish. It was probably around the 12.5 mile mark and the 12 mile was the worst for me. In the grand scheme it wasn’t a big hill at all, but at the time, it took every ounce of energy to keep my pace and get over it. Also, and this is several hours later – I found out that my phone failed to record my run, so I have no idea why my actual splits were. Boo hiss.
Weirdest thing I saw: A deer, which was surprising as we ran through mostly residential areas, and a chicken. Not a real chicken, but rather one in costume. Although, I’m not quite sure why…
Final Thoughts: Best race ever. The feeling of accomplishment following the race was almost overwhelming. I still can’t believe that I knocked my time down so much and am eager to see just how far I can push myself now.
Also, this race, albeit small, was very well organized. The website and Facebook page were both very informative and parking was ample when I arrived in the morning. All the aid stations had several volunteers ready with Gatorade and water at each one and they were appropriately spaced apart. I can honestly say that this was one of the most organized races I’ve participated in. Good job to everyone that put it together!
Also, shout out to my friend A who also PR’d and whose loving sister (Also an ‘A’) was not only there in the morning for the freezing cold start… ..but hunted both of us down in her car to take some pretty awesome pictures. That is love right there guys.
I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend as I did, what a great way to kick off Turkey week! Have a happy Monday!