Atlantic Regionals (6k=24:03)

Here’s the thing.  I didn’t tell people I was running this race because I didn’t want to open a can of worms of negative comments. Which I drank some haterrade when posting the below picture, BUT I DID ALSO RECIEVE SOME GOOD LUCK WISHES!  (and don’t die wishes…so thank you for that!)

Honestly, it was hard enough to decide I wanted to run this and I needed all the positive support I could get.  What if I didn’t finish?  What if people expected something that I couldn’t live up too?  What about negative judgment (which I got enough of anyways).  What if (and my biggest fear) I got more injured.

But first and foremost, I left this run at the same as when I entered.  I’m not anymore injured then when I crossed onto the race course. 

Second, I had absolutely no goals in my finish other than to leave at the same injury level as I came.  I hadn’t run quickly at all since September 8th.  I had no clue of how this race would shakeout. With that, I normally am one to do a 5 mile warmup, but I didn’t want to push my luck and just kept it at 2 miles.

The gorgeous Rachel and I

During my warmup, I felt like I was going into cardiac arrest even when I warmed up at roughly 9 minute pace.   I did a few striders, decided I was freezing and to wear both arm warmers and gloves (and I was in the minority with that).

There were close to 300 runners and we all lined up in our respected boxes…my college always has the worst box assignments and we were box 42 out of 49…last year we were box 2 out of 50 something.   Even at the start line, I was a nervous wreck.  I was deathly near tears and I can’t tell you why.  It was actually when I saw one of my twitter followers (who is awesome BTW) that I was like going with flow for real.  I was an emotional wreck and at that point I just wanted the race over with.  I wanted to know if I was making a wise choice or an idiotic one.

The gun went off and we were off.  I thought I was going really slow, because I was probably 250th place in the first 400 meters.  I have never finished anything other then first for my XC team…not being cocky, it’s just the fact.  So when I saw myself getting out as 6th on our team, it didn’t bode well.  I told myself, Hollie none of these girls have been injured the entire season chill out.  It wasn’t until I passed my coach at mile one and he told me my time (6:02) that I realized how fast people were taking it out.   I heard from a far someone yell, a little aggressive to be taking that out HT and knew exactly who was saying that…so I did the normal thing..scanned the crowd for the voice, winked and kept on keeping on.  I tend to wink at people a lot at races…

I had no idea of how fast I would run beforehand, but figured it would be around 7 minute pace.   (We all have secret motives)

The rest of the race was a big muddy blur.  The men had run first and tore up the course and I got swamped a few times.  I actually continued to pass females (which I was surprised…what endurance do I have?) that had taken it out faster and it was great motivation.  I think continuously passing people really allowed me to keep my drive up.  The race itself went by pretty fast.  I figured I would be preying that it was almost over the entire time but it was just a blur.  Before I knew it, it was mile 2, then 3, then I was moving through the finish shoot.

So I surprised myself with an overall finish of 95th place and a time of 24:03 (6:28 pace). I can honestly say, I layed it all out on the line out there and have no regrets and my friend was right.  It was aggressive and I’m okay with that.

My coaches and I

Where will I go from here?  I don’t know, I’m still taking it day by day.

Questions for you:

1.       Do you purposely hide certain topics off your blog?

2.       When was the last time you surprised yourself?