Saturday, June 11, 2011
Giving it 100% of your 100%
The women's mini has become an annual event for me. This was my third adventure to the mini with M.E. and it was a thoroughly fun time. It's not often that I get to start in corral one, right behind the pro's (how I end up here every year I do not know because my corral time is based on a 10k PR of 46 minutes that I set in 2009 and I do not re-enter that time each year, I am not in 46 shape at all!) but the start is great with the pro's getting up to speak and they are right next to us. Amazing to see how petite Deena Kastor is, I felt like a giant standing on the ground only a few feet away from her! Today's race was dedicated to the great Grete Waitz and for the first time in 40 years, the women's mini had a male runner: Grete Waitz' life partner ran in her stead. Shortly after the anthem, the gun went off and and the crowded corral quickly thinned out. Customarily, I ran too fast the first mile (7:30). For some reason I can never hold back in a "short" race, I had no idea what I was going to do today, thinking 48 if things went spectacular to 52 high if things were less than spectacular. "Things" being my fitness first and the environmental conditions second. It was cooler at the start: 69 degrees but the 96% humidity is a killer on these lungs, I was feeling it by mile 3. The beginning of the race is on the flat section of Central Park West, for 1.5 miles I am in my element, the flats, then it's a quick right and hard left turn into Central Park followed by a short gradual climb and then the first major uphill. Mile 2 was just under 16 minutes and I thought if I could hold on, it would be a spectacular day. My garmin was way way off. I couldn't rely on the pace at all so I went by heart rate, pegging it at 170-174. Mile 4 was the slowest (there is a long uphill there) and then it was just a hang on until the finish. Once I settled myself to running at the upper end of my HR range, the pace no longer mattered, it couldn't, I was running as fast as I could. Today, it wasn't fast: 51:29, my slowest 10k in awhile but that's OK. It's the reality of what my fitness was today and I can only get faster from here. Looking forward to training for a fast 10k in the fall, increasing my mileage gradually and racing my way fit with some short, fast local races. I never push myself as hard in a tempo run as I do in a race. In order to get faster at the shorter races, I will have to race more and that's fine, I'm looking forward to it! A big congrats to M.E.'s niece Michelle, doing her first ever 10k, the longest distance she has ever run, a great accomplishment! The running genes are evident in the family and M.E.'s daughter Kiera went 49! Great day!