|Home, sweaty, happy with my time!|
So, I stretched and iced, and headed out to the NOTC's free 2-mile summer race tonight. It was much hotter than last time I ran the race: we had lucky cooler weather a few weeks ago, but Wednesday was hot, humid, and sunny. I warmed up with about 2 miles plus two strides in the grass right before the start, just like last time, and prayed that my leg would behave itself.
I tried to get a little closer to the start this time so my time would be more accurate, and I did well: maybe 4 rows back. I got behind two fast-looking girls who I'd seen warming up with their coach earlier. The horn blew, we were off, and I tried to pace myself conservatively. The first half of the course has some shade, so it is an easier mile, but the second half is in the broiling sun and is always tougher. At the mile mark (6:06), I passed first one, then the other girl who had been running with their coach (he was still with the girl in front). Now I was fourth. As we entered the final half mile, I had slowed a lot - we were in a head wind and at one point I saw 6:40 on my Garmin! But I was closing on two ladies. I decided - why not pass? I hate passing people. I feel guilty, and I also risk being re-passed since I have ZERO kick at all at the finish. But a free, casual race like this is the perfect chance to practice! So I passed the first girl. As soon as I saw who it was, I chuckled, "See you again later!" It was Kristie, the same lady who blew by us all to win the bridge race, and I knew she'd pass me with her amazing finish later. The second girl put up a fight. She ran with me. I ran faster. She ran faster! I all-out sprinted and dropped her....but was quite exhausted as I neared the finish. Sure enough, Kristie blew past me with some amazing speed. I finished third female (first was under 11 minutes...couldn't even SEE her in front of me!) in 12:19. That's a new PR!
These races are so much fun: afterward we had hotdogs, fruit, beer, peanuts, and snowballs, and all for free if you're a track member! Hard to beat that deal!