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Monday, November 12, 2012

Race Report: Team Nashville 10 Miler

AKA the race where I used every possible crutch I could (well, except for a pacer):

1. I wore my GPS, with current pace, last mile pace, mileage, and overall time on the screen.
2. I wore sunglasses (I never wear sunglasses to run).
3. I ran with my ipod.
4. I ran wearing gloves. (Not really a crutch, but I have to say it was nice to have something to wipe my face with as I ran).

As much as I want to be a hardcore runner who doesn't need music or my GPS watch... they both came in REALLY handy on Saturday morning. So, yeah, softcore Amy all the way.

My goal was to not just PR (My 10 mile PR was 1:31:51 set back in 2008). But, I wanted to break 1:25.

I woke up and did a few things differently than I normally do before a race. First, I took a B-complex vitamin and an Iron pill. Then I putzed around a bit and ate a bowl of cereal around 2 hours before the race. On the way to the race, I stopped and bought a diet coke (for the caffeine) and then once at the race before my warm up and about 30 minutes before the race, I ate a Luna bar.

NONE of that stuff is stuff I EVER do before a race. Did I know that all this new stuff had the potential to royally fuck up my race morning? Yeah, I did. But, it was a risk I was willing to take.

Lately, I've felt like when I start a race, my legs feel like shit. Heavy, slow, etc. But, Saturday, they felt light and fresh. I knew from the warm-up that it was going to be a good day to try for my 1:25.
Less than a mile into the race. School started early on Saturday.

I knew I needed to run 8:30s, and after sending freak-out emails to both Coach and The KoB on Friday about OMG, WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO AT A RACE (yes, this happens before EVERY race), I kinda had the strategy of, start off conservatively (8:45ish) and whittle my way down. Did that happen? Um. Not exactly.

Mile 1:  8:27
I knew going into the race to keep an eye on the race mile markers and the total time, instead of just relying on my Garmin. And when I got to the first mile marker, my Garmin already said 1.1. WTF? This made for a crazy day of lots of my math-doing in my head.

Or, ya know, I'll become an accountant and work with numbers 
ALL FUCKING DAY LONG.

That first mile felt good. Not labored or hard (like the half marathon a month ago felt). The second mile had a bit of a hill in it, but I powered up it no problem.

Mile 2: 8:22.
I was looking at my watch oh... about every 7 seconds and instead of it annoying the crap out of me, it was actually a welcome distraction. It was almost soothing to know that I was keeping my pace in check.

Mile 3: 8:17
Mile 4: 8:20
Mile 5: 8:26

It was at this point that I started thinking about the hill after mile 5. It's a pretty big hill and I was hoping that it would only slow me down to around 8:35-8:45.

Mile 6: 9:17
Doh! I was so pissed about this time. Sure it was a tough hill, but it wasn't THAT tough. I soldiered on and started thinking about the hill in the last mile. I knew that I was going to need to bank some time while I could for that hill. I also started doing the math in my head, trying to figure out what I had to run for the last few miles to make my goal. Basically, I told myself that I couldn't run slower than 8:15s.
Mile 7: 8:00
Mile 8: 7:55
Mile 9: 8:09
And then the hill. UGH. It was a bitch. It's a long grind (which I usually don't mind) and then a steep section near the top (my least favorite types of hills). It was terrible. My legs and chest both felt like they were going to explode. Once it was over (by the way, thanks to the dude that passed me on the hill and tried to give me words of encouragement. Sorry I gave you the death stare and grunt), I started to really pick it up, as I knew that every second was going to count (particularly after the hill). I passed by Elly, the photographer and she said to me.... "That bad, huh?"
 Yeah, it felt pretty fucking terrible.
 At least with sunglasses you can't tell that my eyes are closed.

I had about a quarter of a mile to go and I just ran as fast as I possibly could. I started dry heaving and thought that I was going to throw up all over myself (luckily there was nothing left in my stomach). I dry heaved about 5 times before crossing the finish line and dry heaving again. EVERYONE in the finish line area was quiet, they thought that I was going to start spewing like a volcano at any moment. Luckily, I didn't.

But I did come in with a PR and I met my goal... 1:24:37! BOOM BITCHES! Schooled!

Mile 10: 8:38 (stupid fucking hill).

This race was a huge boost for me. Aside from the hills and the last minute sprint, I felt REALLY good during this entire race. Which is very rare for me. I think my experimentation was right on the money and I'm going to continue to tweak a few things with that routine. This day was a HUGE difference from the Half marathon I ran a month ago. That's progress, bitches!

4 comments:

Carina said...

NICE!

Melanie said...

So super awesome!!! Congrats! As crazy as it it, that course is where I got my 10 mile PR in 2010, somewhere right under 1:25 as well. Despite the hills, I find it a great PR course. And much better weather than the Moon Pie one!

Also, saw you're doing some afternoon/evening running. Let me know if you ever need a buddy or want to come to a 12S run on Monday/Thursday evenings... I rarely run mornings, haha!

chacha said...

Congrats! I just ran a 10 miler for the first time 4 weeks(?) ago. Oct 21st, I think. It was a week before my 50K, so, I didn't kill myself but I found the distance hard to pace. I don't know. I ended up running slower than a half marathon.

Anyway, cheers to not puking! And, yeah, I am no longer afraid of experimenting with new shit on race day (well, unless it's a marathon, then I don't fuck with it).

LAPT said...

Wahoooo!!! Look at those fast legs! I'm glad you didn't through up on yourself, too.