Monday, July 18, 2011

Newman Lake 25K Recap

This last weekend was a complete blur. To recap, I found out about 4:00 pm that my mom was in the hospital and was scheduled to have emergency surgery on Saturday. Obviously I was more than worried about it, but being 8 hours away there wasn't much I could do. At that point they weren't sure if the surgery would take place Saturday night or Sunday morning. I was very tempted to get in my car and drive to Oregon and not run Newman, but after talking to both of my parents I decided to stay home. My mom ended up going into surgery around 7:00 pm on Saturday. My dad called me about 9:30 and said that everything had gone good and that she was in recovery. I was relieved, but at that point I could not sleep at all. Not the best way to begin preparing for a race the next morning.

I literally drug myself out of bed at 4:30 am. I was exhausted as I fumbled my way through the kitchen to down my put of coffee and eat my oatmeal. Since I had never actually been to Newman Lake before I wasn't 100% sure how long it would take me to get there or where exactly I was supposed to go. At the last minute I decided to put Newman Lake into Allie's navigation just in case I happened to take a wrong turn and was late. I know, I like to be prepared and having a race start at 6:30 am takes a little bit of my "A" game outta me. I finally had everything and myself ready to go at 5:15. In the end I didn't really need the navigation and I pulled into the parking lot a little before the 6:00 am early start. I sat in my car for about 10 minutes to drain the last of my coffee and ask myself the same question repeatedly, "what in the heck are you doing???!!!! It's 6:00 am!!!!!" I finally peeled myself out of my car to do a quick 10 minute warm up and a stretch. By 6:25 I was ready to get the show on the road (I was mostly thinking of the pancakes at the finish line).

My goal for the race I stated before was to run my projected marathon pace for December. That would mean I would need to run a pace between 7:30-7:45/mile. I was pretty sure I could achieve this, but not knowing the course and hearing the horror stories of all the hills I was a little concerned of my lofty goal. I figured based on previous times I could potentially finish between 1 hour 58 minutes and 2 hours.

As the race started I zoned out into my own little world and my own pace. The race was fairly small so I found myself running by myself most of the way. The first 4 miles were fairly flat and then the course drastically changed with hills all the way to about mile 12. Miles 12-14 were flat with small rolling hills until mile 14 were there was the monster of all hills. Not what you want to see towards the end of the race! The whole race I just kept on repeating "what goes up, must come down." Even if I slowed down a bit on the uphill I knew I could utilize the downhills to try and regain my pace. My other mental tactic was to pretend each hill was part of a hill repeat workout. Granted these were a bit longer & steeper hills than I do my hill repeats on, I think the mind trick worked. The only hill I really felt tired on was the last one, but I knew I was almost to the finish line and I was determined to finish a strong race (and eat lots of pancakes!). I crossed the finish line in 1:56:47, ahead of my projected finish time and at a pace of 7:32/mile. Exactly on my projected marathon pace for December. Well, that might be my old projected marathon pace. I am shooting for closer to 7:00/mile now. :-) Considering I ran Portland in 8:15/mile in 2008 I would say that is a HUGE improvement!

I felt great the entire race and I didn't feel like I went out too fast. I kept a really consistent pace throughout. My knee felt good and even though I had just ran a hard 10K a week before my legs felt fairly fresh. The only problem I had (probably due to my large consumption of coffee) was that I got a tummy ache about mile 4 that lasted off an on for about 20 minutes. It concerned me because I wasn't sure if I was going to have to stop because of it, but I just tried to not think about it and eventually it went away. Whew!

I loved the distance of the 25K, I thought it was perfect. Only a running nerd would say this, but I was sad when it was all over. I remember passing mile 5 and thinking, "bummer, I only have 10 miles left." Who says that?! Haha.

Oh, did I mention I got 1st?

The BRRC reuses race numbers from previous races. Nice.

Its a tile! Maybe I should run this every year and eventually we could tile something in our house! :-)


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