(aka my Scotland Run 10K report.)
Or could it have been the shoes…or the socks…or something else?
OK, so I signed up for this one since it was a club points race and really did not know what to expect. I have never run well on this particular 10k course (there is a great description of the race course in Joe’s race report)…my best time being 49:29 in the 2005 Healthy Kidney 10K. In terms of Central Park 10K courses, I prefer either the Kleinerman course (my 10k PR) or the Mini 10K course (my 2nd-best 10k time.) So I figured the best way to approach it is use it as an excuse to play dress-up (rocked the plaid running skirt and matching knee-high compression socks to sorta go with the Scotland theme…in addition to the red Flyer singlet) and have fun, while seeing where I was at.
So my first confession-I am a bad Jew, I “broke” Passover last nite 🙂 Indulged in pasta…and oatmeal this morning…I had to carbo-load for a 10K race right, otherwise I’d be bonking halfway up Harlem Hill. (But knowing I lasted longer than quite a few others I know, I don’t feel so bad 🙂 )
Ran a mile warmup to the start…beautiful morning!! When I got to bag check, I saw speedy Flyer AP (who would go on to be our first scorer for both the open and masters men’s teams-awesome!) and we chatted for a few…and compared shoes as he was wearing the same ones I was. Decided to go with the Adidas Tempos for this one, and was quite happy with my decision 🙂
So around 9:40ish, was time to head to the corrals…yellow this time for me, not surprising for a points race. (And as soon as they dropped the barriers between the corrals, it actually was a little bit of a free-for-all, as I saw people with high bib numbers, even those with 5 digits, sneaking in. Really needs to be policed better…) Flyer JJ was there with me and we chatted a little waiting for the start…he being 2 weeks away from Boston, was intending to run this race at marathon pace…sub-8 pace. So I said that my goal for the day would be to either stay with him or ahead of him. (Well as long as he ran that pace and not too too much faster 🙂 ) So after listening to bagpipe music from some band called Whiskey something, the usual announcements, and the national anthem, we were off…and was quite crowded just to cross the start!! We’d start walking…then running…then come to a stop…then start jogging again. But finally we did cross the start 🙂
Mile 1 (7:38)- Up that gradual uphill on the west side of the park. Kept JJ in my sights the entire time…but honestly, as I really have no concept of race pace right now, I wasn’t sure if I was going at 7:5x pace, or was it faster? Well that question was answered at the mile split and the first thing I thought was “I still feel pretty good.”
Mile 2 (7:33)-And knowing mile 2 was a net downhill…even better place to make up some time. And in this mile I passed a certain someone in a highlighter singlet…hehe. Additional goal, stay ahead of him! And I was still keeping JJ in sight…sometimes he’d go ahead, sometimes I would, either way I was still running well.
Mile 3 (7:42)-Enter the hills. The first Harlem Hill sucked (and I was getting passed there), but I took advantage of the downhill reward afterwards. I never slow for water in 10ks, but I did so today…though the temp was a cool 50, it was very sunny and I felt it. Flyer DG was running and cheering in the other direction…was good to see! There was no 5k mat for this race, but I looked at Mr. Garmin at the 5K point (the marking was on the ground) and saw about 23:45…mile 4 makes it tough to negative split but either way barring a disaster, I had under 50 minutes in the bag…now the question is will it start with a 49, 48 or even 47?
Mile 4 (8:18)-Yuck. This mile, between the last Harlem Hill and the gradual incline to east 90th, is always, always a slog and I always, always, lose time here. I lose JJ for good in this mile (he’d go on to finish about 30 secs ahead of me)…just forget about that, concentrate on my race, run my own race. I wasn’t really getting passed in this mile, which was a good sign. Saw Flyer GW at Engineer’s Gate…was good to see him, there wasn’t a lot of Flyer support on the course for this one (however, this was a holiday weekend, the half-marathon in Queens was the same morning, and I think there were also some tri/bike things going on.)
Mile 5 (7:32)-The worst is now over, just bring it in. This is a perfect time to start picking up the pace a little…as this mile is mostly flat, followed by Cat Hill downhill. Just kept moving on up, picking off those who started out too fast (my teammate DT being one of them…he was lined up near me and JJ and really took off at the beginning!) RG from Urban Athetics passed me before Cat Hill and we exchanged “good jobs”…but I figured I’d also try and keep him in my sights too. Whatever you have to do to keep you motivated and running hard in the later, tired miles, right?
Mile 6 (7:38)-Almost done. Time to run balls out (or in my case, tits out…hahaha.) I saw Flyer JB who had passed by me in the early miles and I passed him back just south of 72nd…he said he went out too fast and was done for, and said several things to try and motivate me (I just remember something that had to do with Braveheart? But who’s mind is working perfectly after 40 minutes of hard runing?) I was definitely tiring-this being the longest distance race I’ve done since my injury, but still hung in there.
Last .2 mile (1:33)-Quick look at my watch said that I have a possibility of 47:xx…but it was gonna be very close!! I thought back to the last .2 mile of the 2009 Mini 10K and how great that was…not sure I had another 1:30 in me, but I had to gun it all the same. As I approached the finish, I did hear the announcers calling my name, which was a very nice boost and really helped me finish up strong!!
And I did make sub-48 with a few seconds to spare! 47:54, 7:43 pace…a huge course PR. And as I found out later-I actually scored for the women’s open team in a points race (for the 2nd time ever)…was the 4th Flyer female today (guess most of the speedy women decided not to show up today? 😛 )
So past the finish, exchanged “congrats” and “good job” with Flyers and peeps from other teams (there was one woman from UA who had been running nearby in miles 3-5…turns out we were sorta using each other as rabbits…anyway, when she finished not too far behind me, I said “good job.” No matter what the team, I make it a point to congratulate the other runner…hey we’re all in this together, right?) Got interviewed briefly for the NYRR video-I make an appearance 4:51 into the video! (I think the outfit got a bit of attention…definitely got a lot of compliments/comments on it!) Found a nice-sized group of my teammates and chatted and exchanged race stories, listened to the band play for a little bit, then me and a few others went out for celebratory margaritas (oh, and some food too)…perfect day to sit outside sipping those babies!
So I’m definitely pleased with this one, especially since I really haven’t been “training.” Even though my weekly mileage is now in the 20s, I haven’t been doing any speedwork yet, but looked like I didn’t lose all that I got from last year’s training. And the best part-didn’t feel the IT Band at all…it almost felt like last spring/summer. (But it still got an icing when I got home.) So things just may be on track, so to speak…but that does also mean keeping up cross-training/strength work…if that’s what helped me rehab this thing, gotta keep that up so it stays far, far away…right?
And I think I found my new perfect racing shoe!! 🙂 And if it really was the skirt…am I gonna have to wear it for all races now? :-O