Top 20 finish
PR (sub 1:15:42)
Despite the fact that storms were threatening a late start (or cancel. . . eek) the weather wasn't too bad for this event. This happened last weekend and all those storms we had in Missouri that caused all the flooding were working their way east to Ohio. It was a fairly humid morning, and we did get rained on around mile 8 or 9. However, I managed the humidity fairly well and I think this is what helped me place so high.
My race started 5 minutes before the Capital City Half race started, so I didn't get to run with Marshall. I just knew I couldn't run 5 minutes slower than him or he'd catch me before the finish!
In typical fashion of a championship event, I started out a bit to fast for myself. This happened to me the past 2 years also at the 10 mile championships. In the future, I'm going to make a conscious effort to not get carried away in the first 2 miles. I need to just trust that some of the ladies will come back to me as I preserve through the race. It's just fairly demoralizing when you open up with a 5:30 mile and are really close to being in last place, but I need to just do what works for me.
I never really knew what place I was in. I felt like I started really far back and slowly reeled in runners ahead of me that had also started out a bit to fast. I saw a couple ladies drop out as well, I don't know if it was the humidity or just not running the pace they wanted, so this also helped move me up to a higher finish.
I had trailed a girl for about miles 5-11, maintaining about the same distance the entire way (20 or so seconds). By the time we got to mile 11, I noticed I was finally gaining some ground on her. By mile 12, I think I had made up another 10-12 seconds on her! Great! I was starting to get a bit more competitive now. Right past mile 12, we started on a fairly decent size downhill, I was running about 5:25 pace, hoping I didn't start to go for it too early. I passed another girl that was struggling, and continued to focus on the girl I had been chasing the entire race. We finally got to the bottom of the hill, had a right hand turn and started to climb a decent hill into a head wind. Let's just say my pace slowed severely, and I was positive that this girl I was chasing down would EASILY pass me right back. As I crested the top, nearly crawling, I was surprised I hadn't been passed back. I didn't want to look behind me, so I tried really hard to pay attention to the crowd to see if they were just cheering my name, or if the cheers included the other girl as well. Either way, I didn't want to chance it, and I didn't want my time to slow even more, so I made it to the finish line as quickly as my little legs would carry me.
Apparently that hill had the same affect on all the runners. And the girl I had been chasing down the entire time, happened to be the girl that we had dinner with at the elite pasta party the night before! Overall, I'm pleased with my time and EXTREMELY happy to finally break into the top 20 at a championship event. I wished I could have ran a PR,. I don't think that time (1:16) is a testament to my fitness, but apparently the race was pretty slow overall. I'm not sure why, but maybe the humidity and rain affected us more than I give it credit for. I'm also happy that I managed not to get a side stitch and felt fairly strong the entirety of the race.
|Soaking wet by the time we got back to the hotel|
**on a side note - several of the runners in the Capital City Columbus Half got pulled of the course. They black flagged it when a thunder and lightening storm came through. I'm thankful that both Marshall and I got to finish. However, the USATF race follows NCAA rules. So as long as I started, I would have had the opportunity to finish.
|World's largest golf tee. Apparently this little town in Illinois had a whole bunch of "World's Largest" items.|