From the Archives: First XC Championships Nov. 2010
From the archives.
It’s always great to look back at old posts and see where I’ve come via running and life. I started this blog at the very beginning of my running career, when I first decided to run cross country in college and the summer before. When I was balancing swimming and running (both collegiately) and struggling to do so. I thought it would be pretty cool to reintroduce readers to some of my very first races. I didn’t have a lot of readers back then (do I now…who knows) but it’s pretty cool for me personally to see where I came from.
So this will be the first of a few meaningful races for me (First collegiate championship cross country race, first half marathon…I’m not sure any other oldies that stick out. Oh probably when I got my stress fracture too).
Let’s take a time travel back to November 2010 shall we?
With many college cross country races (especially championships) you get there the day before and we did. I had no idea what to expect…I had never done a race with over 300 females or a championship style running race. I had begged my swim coach to let me take a few days off from swimming and he allowed it. So that was taper. In this period of my running career, I was running about 40 miles a week. That was a lot for me and I was still really new into running. To this day I have done a hard taper for any race mainly because I have either been injured during cross country, every race I PR in isn’t a goal race…had I known Nike would turn out so well with a 2 day taper, I probably would have tapered. (No I won’t be running 10 miles before the New York City marathon…).
We arrived at the race to realize we were in box 1 (out of 40). This really meant we had to cut over the airfield in the first 400 meters a lot more then say…box 39. This was also a period before garmins really had taken off as well as (I believe) timing in the bib.
Since it’s been a few years I obviously don’t remember every single pain, sweat and emotion felt during the 6k but I do remember one simple thing that will always stick in my mind. This race is meaningful for me to one sole reason. I learned more about my pacing in this single race then most others. I took this race out too fast and I died. I died hard. I positive splitted like no tomorrow. I was riding the pain train after mile 1. I realized taking out races fast was not my thing and it helped shape every single race I do now…why? Because I have the biggest fear of dying like I did in that race.
So with that I ended my first college cross country season and began getting into serious swimming. I never regretted joining cross country (obviously) and I remember being pretty sad it was over.
Questions for you: Most memorable early sport of your choice memory?