No Sub 40.
I put some goals out there and worked my butt off for them. I researched. I was nervous. I hoped. But I didn't do it this time.
After racing the Prefontaine Memorial 10K, I can now say:
- I didn't PR (for the first time in two years)
- There are some terrific people who were pulling for me. They left comments on my preview post, sent gifts by mail (you are both AWESOME and you know who you are!!), and gave cyber (non-)coaching advice (you are awesome too!!). Love was poured out on me! THANK YOU! I am incredibly blessed.
- Without a doubt, this was the hardest 10K course I have done yet (I am still pretty inexperienced, though). I have avoided this one, and purposefully looked for easier, flatter races. I found a challenge here, (but not a sub 40- not by a long shot- or even a PR).
I got a pretty good night's sleep thanks to my parents who went out of their way and booked a hotel for us on the bay. It was a breezy 49F at 8 am- but warmed up by race time (which was 10).
For breakfast I ate oatmeal and drank coffee with milk and sugar (usually I use stevia). I also had some Gatorade about an hour before the race, and had been drinking a bottle of Powerade Zero for each of the 4 days leading up to the race. I put on my Brooks Launch and headed to downtown Coos Bay, OR.
When I got to the start it was still pretty early, so I looked around and ran into Ronda. We visited awhile and then I started my warm up.
After about a mile and a half of easy running I did some strides in an alley way (6 x 50-100 meters fast), since the crowd was getting pretty thick at the start. The high school runners started their 5K (due to OSAA rules, they can no longer compete in the 10K with all other racers- boo!).
There was a good-sized crowd for such a small town (The late Steve Prefontaine's Hometown), and no timing chips or mats.
I ran into an acquaintance who is the cross country coach for Yoncalla High School. I asked, and he told me he was shooting for under 45 minutes.
The community college cross country athletes lined up on the line and I got right behind them. Behind me were about 800 people, many of them in crazy costumes. Lots of fairies and a few dinosaurs and even a pair of gorillas. Music from the 80's and early 90's hair bands was blasting, and they played "The Final Countdown," just before starting us on our way.
Not sure where this photo (above ) was taken, but if it looks flat, it is deceiving.
The course was essentially out and back: uphill for the first mile, downhill for the second, uphill for the third, downhill for the fourth, uphill for the 5th and downhill for the last mile- until the end, which was flat for a few blocks before heading up the hill to the finish.
My goal was to try to run under 6:40 uphill and under 6:15 downhill (I realize now that this still doesn't average to 6:25 pace, so maybe I need to work on my math too!). My splits are messed up due to my hitting the lap button 12 seconds into the race, but more or less they show where I struggled:
mile 1 -6:40 (on goal)
mile 2- 6:14 (on goal)
Heel striking and trying to catch the man in the neon tutu.mile 3- 6:52 (12 secs slower than goal, nice hill)
mile 4- 6:20 (5+ secs slower than goal)
For a while I could see the second female in front of me, keeping a steady pace and leading by 50M or so. I finally caught her and we ran together part of miles 4 and 5 in a stretch called agony hill. People were cheering because they knew we were 2nd and 3rd at that point. Then she got ahead of me on the downhill. I tried to reel her in, but to no avail.
mile 5- 7:24 (way off of goal- 44 secs slow)
mile 6- 6:20 (5 secs off of goal)
As I entered the track for the last .2, it seemed as though the finish line was so far away still. I did my best to put some power in my kick, but got passed twice! First, the coach from Yoncalla came out of nowhere, and passed me like I was walking. Hitting his top speed, he left me in his dust! Then, as if that wasn't enough, as I got close to the clock and could see the BIG old 40 (turning to 41) already on there, another guy sprints by me. DUDED TWICE! ha :) I had nothing left.
When I finally crossed the line at 41:09 I wasn't upset about it. This time I knew I gave it my best and just couldn't hit that time goal on that course. Nothing really went wrong, I just couldn't hit three hills that were a mile long each, and maintain my goal pace. I still feel I could hit a sub 40 on a flatter course right now. I want to do the Scandia Run over again!
There's a lot more I could put in here about the stress of awards ceremonies and mostly potty trained 2 year-olds, but I will save that. I am just glad I found my bag with my wallet after I left it in the bleachers.
41:09 gun time
3 / 391 females
1 / 51 35-39 age group (AG record on this course is 38:05)
35 / 803 overall
Late Edit: You can read the online newspaper article about the race HERE.
Danny got in the bounce house and ALL the kids came running!
Matthew and Nathan found some moose and bears to hunt (that is a Lollipop- not a cigarette!)
Ronda let Danny win at air hockey. :)
Levi made some hoops!
We were blessed to have some exceptional weather on the coast.
It was a beautiful day at Sunset Bay on Friday (day before the race)- so the boys and I relaxed there for few hours soaking up the sunshine and the last days of summer.
Here I leave you with a few photos:
Here I leave you with a few photos: