I mentioned in my last post that the wind doesn’t typically bother me when I run. Let me take that back right now.
I ran a hilly, multi-terrained 10k today, and we ran up the longest, toughest hill with headwinds of 17-25mph. The thing that kept me from the temptation of walking was reminding myself that this was a training run and the hills were speed work.
There may have also been some swearing.
I ran without looking at my watch again. Except for that 2 mile or so stretch of uphill into the wind, I felt really good. We ran through farm country, and a good portion of the race was on dirt/gravel roads, including a muddy short-but-steep hill near a cow farm. The beginning of the race smelled like manure. Not my favorite race aroma.
Once we finished the big climb, I was able to recover back to a decent speed for the last 1.2 mile.
My husband surprised me by showing up on the race course just before the 6 mile mark. He hadn’t told me he was going to come and he had gone off to do his usual swim & yoga earlier. He ran with me to the finish, which was neat especially since I wasn’t dying at the end like I have been the other times he jogged alongside me. I was able to speak to him in full sentences, one of which was, “My legs are kinda toast.”
My goals for the race were to not walk and to run it under an hour. I finished in 51:30, just 32 seconds off my 10k PR on a mostly flat course. This was good enough for 2nd place in my age group.
7:58, 8:09 (short/steep hill), 7:48, 9:08 (hill), 8:54 (still hill), 8:07 (incline, but felt flat compared to previous hill), 7:25 (.2)
One of the interesting post-race analysis observations is that many of the runners were back from the same race last year, but their times were significantly slower this time, I’m guessing due to the wind. The woman who won my age group won the whole woman’s race last year, and her time was almost 4 minutes slower this year. The same for the 40-44 year-old lady who finished less than 30 seconds ahead of me, who ran it 4 minutes slower. Both these women are people on my local race radar because they have routinely beaten the pants off me in races, but it seems like I am creeping up on them (race-wise, not like a stalker) in my times. Not that I’m so much trying to get all competitive on them, but rather, I see this as a benchmark of how I am improving. And I still need all the confidence I can get. At least this was another race that I didn’t have stomach issues at all.
I’m trying to do more of the stuff that scares me this training cycle, I have two more races on my schedule that are hilly that I’ll be using as training runs. I don’t mind hills when running on my own or if they’re rolling, but when racing up long ones or when I’m given hill repeats on my schedule, I tend to groan. Putting me in a race with slightly less pressure and giving it a hard-but-not-race effort seems like a good way to nudge me out of my comfort zone.
I think I’ll keep doing what I’ve been doing because I think it’s working.
I met a fellow blogger today, Darlene of My 1st 5k & More. She ran the 5k and won her age group (they got pie). She reported that the wind gusts were up to 40mph. No wonder it wore me out. Darlene took some great pictures from the race, and you can check them out (along with her race report) by clicking here.