Plan: Run my first Beach to Beacon 10k and NOT RACE!
|Being a Tough Chik inside one of the Ft William's fort windows|
Guess what? I did it. I was able to shut off "The Beast" and just run happy. No time goals (except to take it easy), no chasing a PR, nothing except--Run easy, run happy and enjoy the day.
With Timberman 70.3 just two weeks from race day, I needed to treat this run just like a normal training day. Plus, with the hills on this course it was my #1 priority to stay injury free. Fears of hurting my knee like I did this winter (and ending up in PT for 2 months) were not far from my mind.
I went up to the race with Dawn and Stephanie-it was a totally stress free morning! Dawn would be spectating since she has a sprint tri on Sunday and she would also serve as official race day photographer. Stephanie would be running her second road race ever (her first being many years ago, a small local 5k put on by the YMCA).
Yes, her bib says Andrea but we cannot talk about that. Let's just call her Stephandria kay?
Sadly, there was no normal Dunkin Donuts stop on this morning and I was very sad. I had to suffer with coffee from home.
We got into the area with no issues since it was still quite early (they close down a ton of the local roads) and we arrived at Portland Head Light at Fort Williams as the sun was rising. It was so pretty. We walked around and checked things out.
Then it was time to make it back to the starting line but come to find out there were only shuttles going from the finish back to the start AFTER the race. If we wanted to catch a shuttle to the start, we needed to leave Ft Williams and head over to the high school. Dawn zipped us there and we boarded a bus and got to the start with lots of time to spare.
|Race Dude that helped us figure out the shuttle conundrum|
This is NOT the norm on race day and I enjoyed feeling so good.
I ran into several friends from Dailymile, my tri club, my YMCA and then it was a short warm up with Stephanie.
I told Stephanie going into this race that she could and SHOULD run her own race and not to worry about me. She wavered back and forth between staying with me, staying with me for a bit and just doing her own thing. We lined up at the back of the 7:00 minute mile corral and socialized with several friends-Yvonne and her hubby, Bob (aka Happy Bob), Misty and Dan.
It was almost GO TIME and I reminded Stephanie that she needed to run HER race today. My plan was to keep the pace around 8:30 to 9:00 minute miles.
After the gun sounded-off she went. I could see her head for a while and then she was gone. I smiled and watched her disappear into the massive crowd of runners. I was so happy that she decided to run for her and not wait for me. I enjoyed listening to the pitter patter of running feet as we moved along the course and people started to scatter out a bit. No ipod on today's run!
Shortly after the start I heard a familiar voice-it was Danielle and a friend. We chatted with her for a bit and I ran with her friend for a while and the she dropped back. Then "Happy Bob" and I met up and ran together for a couple miles. He was engaging the crowd, thanking the volunteers and just being "Happy Bob". Then he wasn't with me anymore (he said I took off on him on a hill).
I then reached the 3.1 mile mark and was feeling good. I cracked some sort of joke about being done and then someone said "no, it's a 10k" and I pretended to be shocked about it. Silly....
It was hot and humid - several spectators along the way set up hoses and sprayed water over the runners. I made sure to run under a couple of these. Before I knew it, we were heading into the final miles-which is several rolling hills. Then you reach the park and this is where my energy exploded. I was feeling fresh so I decided to push a bit harder and finished with a huge smile on my face.
Finish Time: 52:23
I was even happier when I finally got to review my splits.
Each and every single mile was in the 8:20's (well one was 8:19) and I finished the last .2 (well .37 per my Garmin) in 2:44 for a 7:23 pace. I stayed strong on all the hills and kept even paced through out. I call this a huge success for me.
I think the biggest challenge was holding back, staying calm and not blowing up. This was a practice in patience and I think I can hold back on the BIG DAY--being Timberman.
This race was an important training day for me MENTALLY.
Plus, I had so much fun and felt great the entire day!
The post race set up was fantastic and there was tons of stuff to snack on and drink. They were handing out lots of goodies too!
Cliff Bars, TD Banknorth bags, Frisbees, pens, etc.
Stephanie killed it with a 47:13 (7:37 avg pace). This is with no run training. She only ran just a couple runs before the race and did a 14 miler with me a couple days before hand. Can you imagine what this chica can do with some real run training. Now, don't get me wrong. She is in fantastic shape already and it a personal trainer but I am anxious to see where she could take this whole running thing with a little bit of effort. So proud of you girl!!!
And Dawn did fabulous at her Sprint Tri the following day-The Fisherman Sprint in Gloucester, Massachusetts. Even in the pouring rain and with rough seas she managed a 3rd Place Age Group finish. I am so proud of you too!!
And I got to come home to the Best Cheerleader EVER!! My #1 fan--