Fast forward to 2013, which friends have nicknamed "the year of PRs" for me. And honestly, it has been one PR after another this year. Really, freaking cool.
I sat down with my race result spreadsheet (yes, I am a nerd) and went through my paces at that distance. Last year I ran the 10k in 1:04:37 (10:26 pace). I did a trail 12k in October at a 10:09 pace, and that included hills and uneven footing. So... if I did this 10k at the 10:09 pace, that would put me around a 1:01:30 (give or take). Why not round down to sub-60 (9:40 pace) and make it a goal? I'm pretty sure I've never ran that fast in even a 5k before. Sure! No problem!
Temps were in the 20's when we got there at 8:30 AM. I was smart and wore sweat pants AND ski pants over my running outfit (capris and socks) and I also wore a hoodie and jacket/scarf (over my t-shirt). I was toasty warm. Yay! (related funny: no one recognized me with all my layers) I saw Will off for the 5k and went inside the lodge to warm up - I found some friends there, so it was nice to hang out with them during the 5k. After 15 minutes, I went outside to cheer on Will and some other people from my tri club. While I was waiting, some poor girl (HS cross country?) turned the corner and started puking. Couldn't even move out of the way. Her coach or someone finally helped her to the side and to the finish. I felt her pain, it is uphill to the finish and it hurts.
Once Will finished, I needed to strip down to my run clothes and do a 20 minute warmup. I always mis-judge the time and never get my full warm up in (sorry Michelle!). I did get in 15 minutes and included some strides. I got to the race start with minutes to spare and made a last minute decision to ditch my arm sleeves. I was pretty cold at the start of my warmup (I think it was low-30 temps by this point?) but by the end I was pretty warm. I knew that with pushing my pace, I'd only get warmer and I'd end up rolling the sleeves down. Better to just get rid of them. And running cold always gives me more motivation to run faster.
|sporting my Colfax Ambassador gear and my|
festive elf socks
And that's pretty much what I did. I ran and found a few people I wanted to chase. I was trying to stay in control for the first mile but I probably did a bad job. I just wanted to RUN.
Miles 2-4 were basically "lets see how fast I can run but still breathe". There were two girls (also in elf socks) with their moms and we kept leapfrogging each other. They eventually got in front of me but were running at my target pace, so I just used them as pacers. It turns out it was their first 10k and they were shooting for a 11:00 pace. Oh, and a podium in their age group. They provided a nice little distraction for me, which was much appreciated it.
|after winning 1st and 2nd in their age group|
Once we finally got to the main trail again, we had 2 miles left and I decided it was really go time. I left my 9-year old pacers and just focused on running and not dying. The not dying part is hard because the last 2 miles are a gradual uphill and as a bonus, we had a headwind. Yay!
I don't remember too much about those last two miles except just trying to run fast enough to hit my goal and not die. With about a mile or so left, I came across one of my friends (who is speedy) and I passed her. I was expecting her to pick it up and hang on, but she never did.
|this is apparently what I look like when I'm dying|
Time: 59:25, 9:35/mile pace
Place: 33/56 age group, 298/509 overall