maybe i should mentally write off races more often (2011 mini 10k report)

Hi again!!  Yep, I know this race report is 2 weeks delinquent.  Ya think life has gotten in the way or something? 🙂

Soooo…the Mini 10K.  It’s a race that, for me, was a “must run” for several reasons.

  1. It was my first race as a New York Flyer…way back in 2004!!
  2. It’s the only NYRR race that I have run every single year, without fail…so this year would be #8!
  3. Club points race for the ladies.  Even if I don’t score, I still wanted to be out there in some shape or form…
  4. Ladies-only race=blue race bib (yay for first corral!)
  5. Ladies-only race=lotsa men on the sidelines cheering 🙂
  6. Plus this year’s race had a coupla special aspects-the 40th anniversary of the race and was dedicated to Grete Waitz.

As for how I was gonna run…I seriously did not know.  I was having a conversation with Coach T a week or so beforehand and he asked me if I had any time goal in mind…I said “you know, I’m honestly afraid to make any goals.”  Between last year’s Mini, and the disaster that was the Brooklyn Half, may have been better for the psyche to not have any numbers pre-define my race day.

So what does the post title have to do with things?  Glad you asked…

So the nite before the race, I had gone out with some coworkers to celebrate a a birthday of someone in our group.  Original plan was to have 1 glass of wine, maybe 2 tops, and then go home early and rest.  Said original plan did not happen.  With the conditions for the race supposed to be crappy (either almost 100% humidity or raining), I thought “f*ck it, whatever happens tomorrow happens, I’m gonna have fun tonite.”  Hence me tipping back a few pints of Blue Moon and staying out later than planned (though I did carbo-load properly at home.)

So the next morning…no rain, but the humidity was indeed close to 100%-thank god it was cooler than normal.  Did feel it though during my warmup (boy did it feel different, warming up for this race by running up 8th Ave instead of down CPW!)  I headed to the blue corral and lined up with Flyers JS, EG and CK…within striking distance of the elites too!  cool!  Though when we are all supposed to move forward, me (and CK too) made sure we stayed behind the mats…for reason that we both forgot a few days later 🙂  but also I knew there were others who deserved to be in front of me, and I didn’t want to take the chance of getting caught up in a too-fast first mile.  Anyway, after a few speeches, some tributes to Grete, and one of the Harriers singing the National Anthem (and doing a great job too!) it was go time…

Mile 1 (7:28)-Similar to 2 years ago, I tried to hold back just a little…being a little cautious with both the conditions and knowing the hills were up ahead but also just knowing that a 10K is more of an endurance race than some give it credit for.  Others were flying past and I’d let them go…I sorta tried to keep JS in my sights, who was a strong runner making her first comeback race after injury.  I figured if I could stick with her I’d have a good day.  One treat for today was some of the men (and women not racing) from the local clubs cheering at the mile markers.  Looks like mile 1 was CPTC’s, as I saw a coupla familiar faces 😉  Thanks for cheering, guys!  And I was pretty happy with this mile split (and I think it may have actually been a second or 2 faster-was a little distracted at the mile marker 🙂 )

Mile 2 (7:41)-just kept going up CPW…smiled to myself as I passed my old block on the UWS, and all the buildings I used to walk or run by every day.  Entered the park at 90th and got to work on the hills.  Not time to make my move yet…maintain, maintain, maintain.  Even though this split was a little slow, I wasn’t really getting passed, and I had something left for the 2 biggest climbs of the race ahead.  (And thanks to North Brooklyn Runners for their great cheering at the mile 2 marker! 🙂 )

Mile 3 (7:37)-first climb.  Attack the hill, don’t look at the watch.  If I get passed here, catch ’em on the downhill.  And that was exactly what I did.  While running downhill, I actually heard JS chatting with Mary Wittenberg…and Mary passed me on the second uphill-she was running the race with Grete’s husband 🙂  I said something about how great the race was, the cheering stations were a fun touch…or something like that because seriously, who’s mind works well while running a 10K race in conditions resembling a swimming pool?  And speaking of cheering stations, Front Runners sure brought it at the mile 3 marker!!  Fun!!

Climbed a little more to the 5K point…which was 23:39.  Hmmm, pretty good!!  I know I’d have to run a major negative split to PR (and mile 4 always makes it hard to negative split), but maybe I could get close to my course PR from 2009 of 47:27.  That said, 2009’s race had much better conditions…and briefly, 2008’s race flashed into my mind.  Where I kept it together through the first 5K in bad conditions, only to lose it during the second 5K.

Mile 4 (8:06)-So I just kept climbing.  Up to 102nd, and up the sneaky incline to Engineer’s Gate and the mile 4 marker, where I saw Flyer SC and a coupla other clubs cheering.  I sorta breathed a sigh of relief here.  I’d still love to be able to get this mile under 8 minutes, but the fact that I was still keeping it together said a lot.

Mile 5 (7:32)-the same thought as every year…worst is over, all downhill from here.  And maybe not killing myself on the hills was a good thing, as I was able to pick up the pace more than usual this time around.  CPTC was back at mile 5 cheering, along with some others…I passed by CK at the end of this mile and was hoping she’d stick with me for the final stretch…

Mile 6 (7:28)-just keep on working hard…think of all those intervals at the track.  I’m still passing people, guess my strategy of holding back on mile 1 pays off again.  Hit the 800m to go sign and I think of running 800’s at the track, and Coach T telling me to “hit the pace”, and indeedy, hitting the pace.  Don’t think I’m gonna be throwing down any 3:20 half-miles as I have been doing during track workouts, considering I had 5.5 hard miles already on my legs, but it could help me close strong.  Finally, I see my team at a cheering station-yayyyyy!!!

Last .2 mile (1:32)-again, not looking at my watch, even though I hit the split button.  No idea if I’m near a real PR or a course PR or way off.  400m to go sign-I think “just a lap of the track”…though of course the track doesn’t include an annoying uphill to Tavern on the Green 🙂  I see Flyer DM up ahead and try and finish as close to her as possible…passed by just before the finish…gave it everything I had!!  (and gave it so much, I almost ran into someone who stopped short just after the finish line…)

Final time-47:24, 7:38 pace. 5K splits of 23:39/23:45-most evenly I have run this race in a very long time (with the exception of 2004, where I negative split by 1 second)…and 3 second course PR…not too shabby!  Not bad for a race I had mentally written off the night before…lol.

Got our medals (really nice ones this year!) and pink carnations, and did the usual posing for pics and mingling…thankfully everything was before the rains came 🙂

And I do not endorse getting wasted the night before a race…but maybe, occasionally, some Blue Moons won’t hurt…LOL.

Some piccys from the day!

Me and JS cruising up CPW in mile 1

mile 6-i totally look i'm walking but i swear i'm running

finish line!

near collision past the finish!

cute runner guy, will you accept this carnation?

running shoes, medals and flowers. guess which shoe is mine?

more flowers! with flyers in the background

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a mini (10k)-disappointment

Well I was hoping to have a happy, upbeat report for you all, my readers who gave me good wishes beforehand.  I won’t sugar-coat it…I was quite disappointed with my race at the Mini 10K yesterday.  Didn’t hit the A (sub 7:30 pace), B (PR/sub-47) or even C goal (beat last year’s time of 47:27)  Furthermore, I barely improved on the 10k race I ran 2 months ago.  By the numbers…a little comparison.

  Mini 10K
(June 2009)
Scotland 10K*
(April 2010)
Mini 10K
(June 2010)
Mile 1 7:28 7:38 7:29
Mile 2 7:33 7:33 7:36
Mile 3 7:34 7:42 7:46
Mile 4 8:07 8:18 8:17
Mile 5 7:37 7:32 7:32
Mile 6 7:38 7:38 7:41
Last .2 mile 1:30 1:33 1:32
Final time 47:27 47:54 47:53
First 5K 23:29 23:45 23:47
Last 5K 23:58 24:09 24:06
  +0:29 +0:24 +0:19

*5k splits for the Scotland Run were approximate, as there was no chip mat.  Also, the first mile was up the hilly west drive as opposed to the flattish CPW mile of the Mini 10k.  Mile 2 was half CPW, half Central Park.  Miles 3 to the end are identical between the 2 races.

So instead of a mile-by-mile…here’s a little recrap. 

The start seemed similar to last year…jogged down to the start to warm up, lined up in the blue corral with a coupla teammates (and even got caught on the NYRR video-around 1:44 in-spreading the Flyer love…)  Waited through all the speeches…which included Paula and Kara (Paula was running, Kara wasn’t.)  Finally a few minutes after 9, we were off.

Again, I tried to keep things under control in the 1st mile and not take it out too fast, as that strategy worked last year.  However, I thought my first mile seemed a bit slower than I wanted…and miles 2 and 3 weren’t much better.  I actually felt weaker on the hill in mile 3 than I did last year.  Mile 4 was a slog as usual but I knew once I made it to 90th street, the worst was over.  And I was actually passing people in the last 2.2 miles.  Mile 6, my strategy was “run hard to the 800m to go sign, then run even harder.  Then show no mercy on that last .2”  Not sure how well that worked in mile 6…though I was sorta pleased with my finishing kick.  But then I looked down at my watch after crossing the finish line and thought “Are you f*cking kidding me?  I only ran 1 second faster than my last 10k?  After supposedly being better trained?”

Well at least getting my picture taken with Kara Goucher

me and runner26 with kara goucher!

…and getting Kara’s autograph too…

…made me feel a little better.  (as did the strawberry margaritas and electric lemonades at the Boat Basin that afternoon…)

I do realize by the numbers-my race time does not look so bad.  And I even ran a more, uh, even race this time.  But I can’t keep but feel I could have done much, much better, as my recent races and workouts have suggested.  I blame a certain someone or something called the Devil’s Advocate (DA.)  He showed up after the mile race at Icahn and made another appearance after this race.  Here is the conversation between myself and said Devil’s Advocate after the race.

Me: Well you know, every other time I had a bad race at the Mini 10K, I could never break 50.  So 47 and change is not so bad, right?

DA: But you should have done much, much better.  Why couldn’t your legs get with the program to run under 47 minutes?

Me: Well, there also was that Brooklyn half I ran 3 weeks ago…was I not recovered from it?

DA:  Well, several of your teammates and friends who ran and/or PR’ed in Brooklyn also ran well and/or PR’ed today.  Why couldn’t you?

Me: The weather wasn’t ideal..kinda humid…

DA: Oh please.  You should not be using the weather as an excuse…wuss.  That’s just weak.

Me: Well I did hit up the Flyers’ happy hour last nite…but I was smart, I didn’t drink too much-and in fact, I had the Blue Point Blueberry beer  that I had the night before my 10K PR.  And I left early to go home, carbo-load, hydrate and rest.

DA: Are you forgetting Thursday nite out to watch your coworkers’ beer pong tournament?  You should know better.  Remember this learning experience?  Wagon for you the night before a race, missy.

Me: Maybe I should have skipped Tuesday’s workout?  Though it really didn’t feel hard at all…

DA: Again, your friends who did speedwork on Tuesday still had good races today.

Me: And maybe I should not have worn heels on Friday…even though they weren’t really high heels…

DA: Vanity has no place in running and racing.  Haven’t you learned by now?

Me: Well this is my first week of training for Chicago…and I’m training for a marathon, not a 10K, right?

DA: But a 47:53 10K does not equate a BQ marathon.  Far from it.  You have a lot of work to do.

And so on and so forth.  I wish that damn Devil’s Advocate could just leave me alone.  I’m not making any excuses-I plain and simple had no game that day. I’m still unsure what to make of my race…as well as my current running fitness.  Did I really get slower in the last 3 weeks?

One final note-I do have to thank quite a few peeps for their great support and cheering…Flyers DK, JB, DR, RG, Bandanahead, Lam, JB24…GA and KM from Urban…oh, and TK!!  (at least I think that was you I saw in mile 6 🙂 )

Til next year’s race.  And Devil’s Advocate, please do not show up next year.  In fact, if you can stay away from my next race too that would be great.  thankyouverymuch. 🙂

show me what you got

the game face begins on central park west...

the game face begins on central park west...

Show me what you got lil mama
Show me what you got pretty lady
Show me what you got shawty
Show me what you got baby

Hands up and wave (show em what you got)
and wave (show em what you got)
and wave (show em what you got)

And yeah, another race report where I start off by quoting some song lyrics…this time it’s Jay-Z (speaking of, anyone remember like 10 years ago when everything on the radio was by Jay-Z? Or DMX? Or Jay-Z featuring DMX? Or DMX featuring Jay-Z? Or even better-a collaboration of Jay-Z and DMX? OK, getting off the topic a little here…)

So yeah-for this year’s Mini 10K…well I had a feeling it was my time to show the course and everyone else “what I got.” Unlike some of my latest races…Sunday morning I wasn’t nervous at all…was strangely calm the whole time…from pre-race prep, to my warmup down Central Park West, to lining up and waiting for the start. The weather was a little warmer than expected, but didn’t really faze me. Something good was gonna happen today, I can feel it.

So me and Flyer TB were lined up in the blue(!) corral and listening to the speeches, chitchatting, the usual. And then Deena Kastor addressed the crowd and mentioned that she wasn’t racing due an injured foot, but just running the race easy (um, if 7 minute pace is easy!) with Mary Wittenberg. And where do the 2 of them line up? Right next to me and TB!! I wished Deena a good run and she shook my hand and wished me the same in return. Once again, don’t we have the coolest sport, where we can toe the line with the best of them? I was more excited to get going and race, and soon enough we did!!

Mile 1 (7:28)-I decided to try a different tactic this year with the flat CPW mile…usually what I did was use the flatness to my advantage and go out hard…only to lose 10-20 seconds on the remaining miles. This time, I tried to hold back just a little bit and see what happens. This still turned out to be the fastest I have ever run this mile. Let’s see how this plays out…

Mile 2 (7:33)-Enter the park, enter the hills. Spotted some Flyers, including NC, JN and JJ cheering on the sidelines. Still feeling pretty damn good and just using some other club singlets in front of me as rabbits. And unlike previous years, I didn’t have the “I wish this was over” feeling. I was kinda shocked when I saw the mile 2 split around 102nd street…holy shit, I didn’t lose much time at all!! Maybe, just maybe, the initial strategy can play off…

Mile 3 (7:34)-first real big climb of the race. Right before hitting the hill, I spotted speedy Flyer JS walking and just asked breathlessly if she was ok after I passed by. I knew walking now, couldn’t be good. And right when I hit the hill, I spotted LG from Urban Athletics cheering for the runners as well, and he gave me some encouragement to attack the hill, and assured me that I was still looking good 🙂 Attack the hill I did, and just flew down the downhill…was really a great feeling, just knowing I was having a GOOD day…where I felt horrible in the past, I was still feeling strong. And as for my mile split-wow!! Once again, I am nothing if not consistent 🙂

Hit 5K at 23:29…and I had to laugh at that. Why? Because that was what I ran for 5K 2 weeks earlier…and now here I am running that in the first 5K of the race, a hillier course, and still feeling like there’s something left? And also, I did some quick math and thought…wow, if I keep this up, I’ll PR, I’ll break 47…I know the 2nd half is a little tougher, but I have negative split this course once before (by 1 second, but still it was!) Can I do it…?

Mile 4 (8:07)-Guess the last Harlem Hill, not to mention the sneaky incline of this mile, affected me more than I thought. I expected to lose some time in this mile, but not 30 seconds. Mental note-must work on hills. But this mile wasn’t all bad…I wasn’t feeling horrible. Saw Flyer BC taking pictures, and then GW and JD cheering near Engineer’s Gate…I sorta acknowledged that I saw them, but no smiling and waving for me…the game face was on today.

the light is at the end of the tunnel...just 1.2 miles to go...

the light is at the end of the tunnel...just 1.2 miles to go...

Mile 5 (7:37)-the worst is over, it’s all downhill from here. (or so someone yelled at us. guess she forgot about that last .2 mile.) Time to take it up a notch. And I was just flying by people in this mile…the CPTC woman who I was sorta pacing around in miles 2-4, a NYH singlet, a GNY top…then some woman in a black sports bra who chastized me and told me “not to cut her off.” Um, excuse me missy, you don’t own the road. There was actually enough room and you know what, it’s a race, it’s every woman for herself. (And as someone else told me…she obviously wasn’t working hard enough if she can say that in mile 5!) Oh I had to beat her now…she’s going DOWN!! Down Cat Hill and was hoping to see the Flyer contingent at 72nd street…wasn’t one this year (well with the exception of Dr. Evil and AS taking pictures). Guess they were scattered around the course instead.

Mile 6 (7:38)-Tired. So tired. But there’s less than 10 minutes of running left…run hard now, you can rest later. I finally passed by black sports bra lady for good (yay!) Flyer PD was cheering partially through this mile…and you know, as tired as I was, I still felt tons better than i did last year when I spotted him at that same point…then I had to walk, and I signaled that I wasn’t doing too good. This year, none of that!! Still catching up to and passing people…guess that decision to hold back in mile 1 paid off, huh? 800 meters to go. A little bit harder now. Just one more climb to finish in a coupla minutes…get psyched for that. Moz was around the mile 6 marker and taking pictures and cheering-thanks again!

finito!

finito!

Last .2 mile (1:30)-At this point, I wasn’t looking at my watch, so I wasn’t sure if there was a time to get under, just kill that Tavern on the Green hill. LG was cheering again around here…even though I didn’t see him, I heard him encouraging me to catch some of the women up ahead. Was there enough distance for me to do it…oh what the hell, I’m just gonna floor this last .2 mile. And I was able to catch some, if not all of those women. And-even better-this was the fastest I have ever run this particular last .2 mile up the hill by at least 5 seconds…if not more (I did the last .2 of last year’s Kleinerman 10K a second faster, but that was flat/downhill)-wow!! I didn’t know I was capable of that kind of a finishing kick, that has always been a weakness of mine. Of course, I was so focused on my finish-that I totally missed my name being called by the announcers as I finished!!
 
Final time-47:27, 7:39 pace. 5K splits of 23:29/23:58-not as even as I would have liked, but not a crash and burn either. My 2nd best 10K ever-and a huge course PR!! Yep, I had never come close to touching my 48:59 from the 2004 Mini 10K…til today!! The curse has been broken!!!

now i can smile!!  hangin' after the race w/ laminator and runner26

now i can smile!! hangin' after the race w/ laminator and runner26

So the usual afterwards. Medal. Flower (this year pink carnations…the recession wouldn’t allow roses.) Mingle with the team, trade war stories and pose for pictures. But of course, my real celebrating started later…strawberry margaritas at the Boat Basin was the perfect way to cap off a great day 🙂
 
Bottom line-this race was very encouraging for me. To not only outperform my recent 5K, but to also beat my recent 10K time (on a warmer day and much hillier course!)…very good thing. Only thing that I may wish was different was mile 4…but it’s learning for me, I need to work on hills. And besides that one mile, I have never paced this race so consistently which was a major plus. All in all-this was the perfect boost of confidence I needed with MCM training starting very soon…

And to the guys who were out cheering-thank you, thank you, thank you. You all helped more than you know. And for those of you running the Father’s Day 5-miler…well I will be returning the favor, look for me running in the other direction and cheering for you 🙂

mini 10k 1, me 0

game face on up cpw!oh. my. god. this is one race you definitely do not f*ck with.

Well, the Mini 10K actually didn’t start off so bad. Though the weather predictions were frightening, I was really just planning to play it by ear. Even though it was hot when jogging to the start area, I was still kinda sorta hopeful…

So I met up with some other Flyers (including Runner26) and we headed over to the start line…and after all the fuss about the bib color yesterday, actually quite a few of us had red bibs. And honestly, once the barrier between the red and blue corral was taken away, we were able to move up and actually had a pretty good starting position. Now all we had to do was wait for the starting horn…

Mile 1 (7:38)-I knew this was gonna be a fast mile, but I really did try to hold back some effort here. Crowd support was great along this stretch, saw Crazy Bandana-head taking pics 🙂 Saw my mile split and was surprised.
Mile 2 (7:56)-into the park and saw Flyers EF and SK cheering (as well as PD right before I entered the park.) Again, tried to maintain a comfortably hard effort…hmm, maybe the weather isn’t gonna defeat me this time.
Mile 3 (8:10)-first of the killer hills!! When I got done with that, really tried to use the downhill as much as I could to my advantage…saw the Flyers’ Mr. President cheering. Slowed for water in this mile-I knew I would regret it if I didn’t, as I didn’t take in mile 1 and felt like I needed it.
The 5K point…hit that in 24:43 and thought, hmmmm, not bad!! Still under 8’s. Maybe I actually am holding it together.
yes, i'm actually smiling...hi flyer guysMile 4 (8:47)-Or so I thought. Things started to go wrong here. Even though my legs were fine, breathing wasn’t too hard, my body was giving signs that it was not responding too well to the heat-actually felt a little clammy and chilled-so I had to back off the effort for a good part of the mile. Saw Flyer JB running in the other direction and cheering…and Flyers GW and LH at Engineer’s Gate…and just like last year, GW yelled at me to save some effort for Need For Speed tomorrow. Was so tempted to yell back “f*ck you” but didn’t :-p
Mile 5 (8:35)-Thank god for two cheering contingents in this mile, otherwise it would have been much worse…still wasn’t feeling great. First, at 84th Street, Uptown Girl and a bunch of her TRD teammates were cheering. As I passed I yelled out to Uptown Girl something like “You were so smart to not sign up for this!!” Their guys were cheering hard and trying to encourage me-thanks guys, I really did need it around this time!! 🙂 I did see both Gatorade and water tables in this mile and did slow down to a walk instead of drinking on the run-I really needed the Gatorade then. Too bad it was so watered down!! I told myself then, “less than a half-mile til the Flyer guys.” Down the hill and yep, Bandana-head and the rest of the NYF cheering contingent was there and so was the mile 5 marker.
Mile 6 (8:58)-this felt like a death march…I did the one thing I did not want to do and had to walk. Flyer JS passed by and asked if I was OK…I told her I was, but she did look back a couple times-thanks, JS. 🙂 Now….it was just about survival…I just wanted it to be over. Saw PD again cheering…I kinda signaled that I wasn’t doing too well. Once again…was so glad to see the “800m to go” sign.
last .2 (1:46)-meh…no finishing kick here. was totally spent, and the hill to the finish did damage again.

Wound up with 51:50-8:21 pace (wanna hear something funny? last year’s time was 50:51, 8:12 pace. Talk about a reversal!!) 5K splits of 24:43/27:07…damn.

Afterwards, first thing I got was Gatorade and water (smart move to have those tables first this year!!) and downed ’em faster than a shot. Then got the finisher’s medal and rose…sorry, I meant pink carnation. Then found my teammates and other friends and shared the usual “OMG, this sucked” stories 🙂 I did stick around for the awards ceremony, and the raffle drawing (hey, I hoped one good thing would have come out of the morning!)…just looking at the top finish times, looked like the elites were affected too!!

As for me? Did I make some race-day errors? I honestly think even if my first 5K were a minute slower, that the heat would have still gotten to me. Unfortunately the only way to deal with it is being acclimated, and obviously I wasn’t (unlike, say, Club Champs in August.) I know I should be happy to have just made it though, and believe me I am. Just sucks when Mother Nature messes with goal, or even semi-goal races. (and dammit, will I ever run a sub-50 10K again?) Was thinking of doing next weekend’s 5-miler as a chance at some sort of redemption, but the weather forecast doesn’t look too great for that either…so wait it out til Club Champs, I guess.

And tomorrow? It’s gonna be an easy (pace, not effort) run-definitely not by choice!!

the curse of the odd year

mile 1 up central park west

After this 4th time that I have run the NY Mini 10K, I have come to one conclusion at least when it comes to the weather:

Even year (2004, 2006)-good
Odd year (2005, 2007)-bad

Yep-just as feared, this morning’s weather was a repeat of 2005. The results and execution, thankfully not.

Well, when I jogged a mile to the start as a warm-up (and saw fellow blogger Brooklyn en route), I knew this could make for a tough day-was already hot and humid. I went to drop off my bag (and saw fellow blogger Chelly and chatted for a coupla minutes) and found some other Flyers and we headed to 66th/CPW, which was where the local elites were meeting. Uptown Girl and Sempre Libera soon joined us after their warm-up. We all got walked over to the start around 8:45-once again, awesome starting position. The usual speeches and fanfare-then we were off!!

mile 5Mile 1 (7:40)-nice, wide-open mile (with some male Flyer support)…however, this kinda signaled that it was gonna be a tough day, as this was the slowest I have ever run this mile.
Mile 2 (8:00)-entered the park and saw a Reservoir Dog cheering section and some other Flyers…it helped a little bit, but by the end of this mile I was thinking “I wish this was over.”
Mile 3 (8:36)-first really hilly mile…and I slowed a little bit to get some water/Gatorade-I really, really needed it.
Mile 4 (8:32)-up the last Harlem Hill and hit 5K in 25:16…knew by then sub-8 pace was out, and decided not to try and kill myself for sub-50 either. Just finish without walking and without a huge positive split like in ’05. This mile is always a bitch, but I just plugged away. Flyer GW was taking pictures near Engineer’s Gate and jokingly yelled at me to save myself for Need For Speed tomorrow.
Mile 5 (8:11)-worst was over, all downhill from here!! Spotted Trakmaniak taking pictures and he gave me a much-needed cheer. In addition, the Flyers male contingent made another appearance at 72nd St…much better than last year!! Luv ya guys 🙂
Mile 6 (8:13)-was really, really hurting here…a sidestitch decided to sneak up on me during this mile. Was so, so tempted to slow to a walk but gutted it out, and just tried breathing as deep as possible. Boy, was I relieved to see the “800m to go” sign.
finished!Last 1.2 (1:39)-another cheering Rez Dog contingent around here was just what I needed to pick it up and finish strong…in addition, I had just passed a CPTC runner and wanted to hold her off, and also I knew I had to haul ass if I wanted to make it under 51. I thought it’d never get there (the start and finish were moved up a coupla blocks this year!!) but I reached the finish line, and the announcer called out a New York Flyer finish 🙂

So-my final result was 50:51, 8:12 pace (25:16/25:35 5K splits.) Not my best, but a good effort for the conditions, and a much, much more even race than the ’05 fiasco. So even though the legs weren’t so tough, the mind was tougher than I thought… (oh and even though I wouldn’t recommend drinking half a bottle of Riesling the night before a race, it didn’t seem to hurt my performance. And it was worth it, anyway.)

Afterwards, I got my obligatory red rose and finishers medal, said hi to blogger Brooklyn again, told the guy who was spraying everyone with a fire hose that he ruled, exchanged “ohmigod this sucked” stories with everyone, posed for pictures, and eventually had brunch with one very cool teammate. (and I also got quite a few complements on my makeshift fitted Flyers top-just pinned a Flyer patch to both the front and back of this top in black-looked very cool.)

Just in-the NYRR folks caught me (albeit briefly) on video!! yay. (another blogger got caught on video too…)

And tomorrow, a nice 5.1 mile easy run on tap-I got the same leg as last year and I know it’s a perfect one to recover from today!! Not to mention a fun day with some very cool people 🙂

now playing: “read my mind” ~ the killers

the devil wears asics

(this blog post title inspired by the trailers for the upcoming movie The Devil Wears Prada.)

Today was the Circle of Friends NY Mini 10K…a special race, not only for the traditions and for the elite presence, but for me, this was an anniversary race of sorts-was my first race as a Flyer 2 years ago. so in a way, was like coming full circle…or something like that.

as i have said before, this is one race that the weather can make or break. 2 years ago, was good weather, a good race. last year…was incredibly hot and muggy, ran a 2 minute positive split due to having to walk several times in the 2nd 5K…and honestly would have DNF’ed if it weren’t for our guys out cheering us on. So this morning, breathed a sigh of relief to see a day in the high 50’s, low humidity…little bit on the windy side, but all in all, not bad.

and before the day/race report, of course, the fashion report: red Flyer singlet, my new “makeshift” black Flyer sports bra (basically a plain black sports bra with a Flyers patch on it-so if I made a last-minute decision to ditch the singlet, the logo is still pretty visible,) my black Adidas Supernova shorts, thin black headband, and the new orange and white Asics DS-Trainers. I was very psyched to wear them to race in, they served me well on Cat Hill the other day, I was sure they’d serve me well today!!

So this morning…stretched, had a nice little warm-up jog on the way to the park, dropped off my baggage, stretched a little more…jogged over to where the women for the local competitive start were meeting. For this race only, the local club women who can run sub-8 pace for 10K could line up right behind the elites. I know I have been pretty much borderline in that category lately…but I had a feeling I could do it today. So I set my time goal for the day-live up to my “seeding” so to say 🙂 So, we lined up and just started chatting amongst ourselves…through the announcements and special guests and elite announcements…I could tell the women were getting quite antsy and just wanted to race. 🙂 Finally we were off!! And here’s the mile-by-mile replay…

1. This mile is straight up Central Park West, from 61st to 81st street. wide open, pretty much flat with a little uphill (but child’s play compared to the park.) my strategy for this mile was to take advantage of it, but not too much advantage. Bit of a headwind in this mile. Saw our assistant coach cheering over by the first mile marker. This mile was 7:37-perfect, right on plan.

2. We continued up CPW and then entered the park at 90th street. right when we entered, I saw Sempre Libera and a bunch of her TRD teammates cheering and was barely able to say a breathless “thank you” before continuing on. My strategy for this mile was to pull back a little bit to save my legs for the climbs in the next 2 miles. This mile was 7:59-still pretty good!

3. From the 102nd street transverse…up one hill, down another, then partially up another. Spotted EV running in the opposite direction and cheering for us. Tried to grab some Gatorade but spilled half of it while trying to funnel. Anyway, this mile was 7:59-good, much better than this mile at the Kidney 10k! Hit 5K at 24:31…wait a minute, wasn’t this my 5K split 2 years ago?

4. once again, this mile was a bitch. the previous headwinds had now turned into crosswinds. i was totally prepared for this one to be over 8 minutes. just hung in there and gutted it out. near the mile 4 marker by Engineer’s Gate, i spotted LH cheering and RB with camera in hand as usual 🙂 This mile was 8:21-ok, I allowed for this, it’s fine, and once again, much better than the Kidney 10K.
5 miles down, 1 to go!
5. time to put the hammer down and pick it up. Spotted the TRD crew again cheering by 84th street. 🙂 tried to use the downhills as much to my advantage as possible and speed down them. our asssistant coach was once again cheering near the end of this mile, at 72nd…but didn’t see a big Flyer contingent as there was last year. was a little bummed at that, but did appreciate the ones who did come out and cheer along the course. anyway, this mile was 7:43…looks like my goal is within sight!!

6. i was getting tired (and hot!) here, but figure as long as this mile was under 8, all was well. spotted our men’s masters captain out cheering. spotted 3 women ahead of me in CPTC singlets…i sorta made them my targets, i wanted to beat at the very least one of them. this mile was 7:56…now time for the kill!

The last .21 was 1:41…i did wind up passing one of those CPTC women, and tried to keep in mind the last speed workout we did up that hill…tried to visualize a faster runner pacing me or something. maybe it did the trick. the end chute was crowded, a lot of people cheering…including a coupla Flyers…saw EV again (who told me afterwards that I “looked like I wasn’t even breathing hard” lol…i may have made it look easy, but it didn’t feel easy! 🙂 )

So-my final result was 49:16, 7:56 pace (24:31/24:45 5K splits.) Looks like I earned my lineup spot 🙂

Afterwards, got my obligatory finishers medal and red rose. Saw Uptown Girl, who had just run a PR! I hung around with some of my teammates for a bit before heading to brunch (complete with mimosas!) on the east side in honor of one of our teammates who had moved to Cali last year and was back in town.

So, today was a good day, pretty much in line with how I performed in the Queens half-definitely redemption from 1 year ago and pretty much ran a similar race to 2 years ago…which is what I’m trying to reclaim 🙂 Also, for the first time in a very long time, I left the iPod at home for a race. Partially because I didn’t feel I needed it for this particular one as the crowd support is great. And did the shoes make a difference? Hard to tell if they made *the* difference between now and 3 weeks ago, but they really felt good.

Already looking forward to this race next year!! Always fun to have the women rule for a day 🙂

now playing: “dani california” ~ red hot chili peppers