I went into this race thinking: It’s not going to be a PR. I knew it will be a great (and expensive) tempo run. That’s exactly what it was. Despite really wanting to be faster than my half marathon pace, my legs did not have it in them. I did, however, have a great time seeing my friends so I can’t complain about that. To preface this: My goal was to come in faster than then 31:45 (what I ran last year…I obviously did not make that goal).
The race started at 7:30am which is a lot earlier than the races I have been racing. It’s not a big deal but I hadn’t slept well the night before. I prefer earlier race starts so it was nice to get back into this mode.
I warmed up and chatted with Kristy before the race. It was great to finally be able to connect and catch up. I had been at the same (bigger races) the last few months but we never found each other. We went out to lunch last November but it seems like our lives were just not connecting after that. It was so nice to spend the hour prior just chatting and catching up.
Before I knew it, I found myself lined up with Kris, Kellie and Mollie and we were off. I saw a top lady pack form in the beginning (with Kris going on to take the win). I was not part of that pack but I watched as they ran off. My legs were not feeling the pop I was hoping for.
The first mile I hit in 6:21. All I could think was defeat. I hit half marathon first miles (almost always) faster than that. I was all by myself yet again and I was a debbie downer one mile into the race.
The second mile I was surrounded by some men and we ran together for a bit. I was improving mentally and I ran a 6:15. I was by no means pleased with it, but I was going to make the best of my race day. I knew my legs were tired from the increase in mileage as well as heat, I was just not prepared for how tired.
The third mile I high fived a police man and got water from a water stop. I dropped the first cup and when the volunteers laughed at me I just replied with “there is a reason I don’t play basketball”…I was able to grab another cup of water thank goodness.
The fourth mile rounds the colissum. You get so close to the finish line only to realize you have 1.5 miles to go. I personally hate the second half of the course because you keep inching closing but not finishing. The last 1.5 miles consist of blind corners and turns. Where does this extra race course come from?
You begin a series of weaves and turns through downtown Norfolk (while having the actual finish line in view). Since I had run the course a couple of times I was prepared. I knew we weren’t headed towards the finish line yet…
As we crossed onto the boardwalk, I pretended to look strong in the last .1. Several people told me how great I looked despite being nearly 2 minute off my PR. I always find that the worse I do or feel in a race, the more people say how strong you look. It could all just be coincidence.
I crossed the finish line in 32.32. I wasn’t overly happy with the time but I wasn’t upset either. If anything it was a nice (and expensive) tempo run with my friends. I need to get some speed in weekly so this fullfilled that.
I’m in a basebuilding phase right now and shouldn’t worry that my times aren’t great (for me). It doesn’t really make me feel all that better though. That being said I do want to focus on running some more races to keep some speed up. I didn’t get that chance when living in Texas and I know it will benefit me in the long run and the marathon (ha great pun!).
Questions for you: