Haunted Hustle XC 5k (19:15)

This race was exactly what I thought it would be.  After two months of not doing low 6 minute paced runs or races (my last was the 8k that I broke my arm) and also driving 1200 miles, I was not expecting a PR.  What I was expecting was a nice shock to my body and that is exactly what I got.  I had toyed with the idea of doing a half marathon instead on Sunday, but decided that was a terrible idea since my body might not recover before the marathon.  Plus, I wanted to start getting some faster miles in as my body goes into taper mode.  It was actually difficult to know there was a half marathon in the area and I wasn’t doing it.

So the race itself:

I was happy to stay with a good friend of mine Laura and we got to the race in enough time to warm up together, grab our race numbers and get ready to go.  It was a “low key” Atlanta race which meant there were only 200 or so people.  Not my definition of low key but I was happy for lots of people.  It was roughly 100 old people and 100 high schoolers.  Look us oldies out of high school go.

Laura and I prerace
Laura and I prerace

The first mile started in an open field and we funneled down onto the course.  I felt like I was really moving and didn’t feel as stiff as I thought I would.  I realized rather quickly that I was pretty far in the back of the pack.  I was discouraged but just mentally told myself, this is how you run and it will be like this in New York City.  (5:57)

The second mile I started to pass people and felt a little but more motivated.  My arm warmers had fallen over my watch so had no idea what my pace was.  I just went with how I was feeling (which really isn’t anything different, I just couldn’t stare at my watch). I passed roughly 5 females during mile 2, the only time I passed females (6:09).

The third mile, I felt exactly the same.  I just kept plugging away at the miles.  I passed a few males and I didn’t feel like I was dying.  I don’t remember anything significant about this mile just that I was running…when I plugged it into my computer I realized I ran another 6:09 mile.  So it was consistent.

I saw the finish line and just powered through.  I had seen three other females the entire race but had no speed or power to catch them.  When I saw the clock hit over 19 minutes I was honestly a little bit upset.  It was a reality check that I hadn’t been doing speed work.  I finished the race in 19:15.

Thoughts of the race:

I am happy with the time after driving and no speed work but at the same time it’s hard to look at times above 19 minutes after 2 races this summer being in the 18s.  I’m also disappointed with a fourth place finish but you cannot control who comes to races and these girls were faster.  I fully enjoyed the race and cross country races are my absolute favorite (I just wish there were more!).  I honestly felt like I could have kept a pretty similar pace for a couple more miles but I couldn’t run faster for 3.  To sum it up, it’s nice to get some faster miles on my legs.  I’m happy but not ecstatic with the time and I had a great time in Atlanta.

Questions for you:

  1. 1.       What is your favorite type of race? Road, cross country, trail, trail?
  2. 2.       Is it cold near you?  I just went from 80 degrees for the last 6 months to 40 degrees.  It was a shock to my body to say the least.