Lexington Race against hunger 10k
Big race in the Columbia area, established for 10 years. 880 entrants. I hadnt had a chance to preview the course because its about 40 minutes from my house. It has been billed as pretty tough with lots of hills. I hadnt run a road 10k since late summer last year, PR was set on a flat to downhill course at 45:05. No idea how this would turn out. I know my fitness had improved substantially but the course description and reputation was scaring me. Its an out and back course with two loops into neighborhoods off the main highway. Basically first mile and last 1.2 are fairly flat. The middle 4 miles are up and down big hills. I had planned to go out in 7:00 pace the first mile and see what happened. This is the second race for the crazy blue super light racer shoes.
First mile felt pretty good, I was fighting the urge to go faster as the 7 minute pace felt leisurely compared to the sub 20 attempt 5k last week. Did some maneuvering through the crowd and settled in with a few friends that had also agreed on the 7 min pace. Hit the first mile right on schedule at 6:57. Right at the mile point started the crazy hills. Constant rolling the whole 2nd mile with an apparent net decline in the last quarter. This inspired fear, because I knew we would have to make up the decline at some point. Sure enough, at 1.9 came a monster hill, long and steep. I was starting to get pretty winded, and looking at my 2nd mile split told me why – 6:38. Way too fast. Slowed down some to get my breath back and to stay with my plan. Next mile was just more of the same, big hills that were hard to make up on the decline because of the steepness. Splits were 7:15 and 7:32 for the next two miles. Seeing the 7:32 apparently lit a fire somewhere because I was getting mad at myself for hemorraging so much time. At this point the hills started to even out more as we prepared to get back on the flat section. With this in mind I just decided to go for it. Picked up the pace to just below 5kish, got back some seconds on the 5th mile with a 6:53 split. I felt a great second wind at this point for some reason – maybe because I knew the hills were over and was totally warmed up (race temps in the 30’s -low 40’s). Ramped up the pace further and started flying, passed several people. The sense of speed was magnified by a lane of 5k walkers parallel to the 10k course. Felt fantastic at this point, hit the 6 mile at 6:36 and kept it up the last 0.2.
Finished in 43:19, PR by 1 minute and 46 seconds! No age group placement though – 3rd was 39 minutes and change. Very competitive race. Just an awesome feeling at the end. Hope I can continue the hot streak! I’ll post the results when they come out.
…Results just got posted:
A second faster than I remembered – woo hoo. Still only placed 34th in a super competitive race.