Hudson Mohawk Runners Club sponsors FREE races throughout the winter for its members. The course is pretty boring but free is free.
This weekend, they offered distances of 4M, 10M and 20M.
I usually run 8 miles on the weekend unless I need to do more for half marathon training. My next half isn’t for 11 weeks so I was tempted to take it real easy and do the 4 miler. Especially since I ran 13.1 miles and 9.3 miles the past two weekends.
But then again 10 miles is only a little more painful than 9.3 so what the hell.
So I signed up for the 10 miler and hoped my legs wouldn’t be too mad at me.
This would be my 4th 10 miler (all last year):
Mayor’s Wellness 10m – 1:49:55
Adirondack Distance 10m – 1:44:39
The Perfect 10 Miler (in NJ) – 1:38:45 PR
It looks like I have gotten faster. I expected to have run a similar race to last week. I finished 9.3 miles in 1:34:39.
So my expectations for this one was to be around 1:40:00 or so. Since the race last Sunday, I had only run several times and they were short ones due to our snow storm and how much I hate the treadmill.
Believe it or not, it was even colder this week than last..
It was in the teens and single digits with the wind chill….my coldest race so far this year. When I heard that, I considered not going. I was hoping that at least the wind gusts wouldn’t be like last week.
So I bundled up and I left early to get parking since these races are crowded and there are other events going on at UAlbany. I got there about 45 minutes early.
What I love about this local race is that you get to see a lot of people that you know.
I immediately bumped into my FB friend, Judy. I got to chat with Sue from Adirondack Runners and met some of her friends who tried to talk me into running a full marathon. They were all running the 4 miler. Lucky them! I also got to see Patrick, my running coach from the Turkey Trot. He was the race coordinator this week.
I stayed indoors until the very last minute and then made my out way outside.
It was COLD!!! But sunny like last week (and less wind.) But COLD!!
This is the 5th time that I have run this course (two 15ks, a 10k and a half marathon) this season. It doesn’t get any better.
The difference this time was that those running the 10 miler started near the tennis courts and the first mile was a loop around the courts before continuing on to the two loops of the State Office campus.
The sun made the first few miles very pleasant. I even unzipped my jacket and took off my gloves.
Usually my legs feel very stiff and sluggish for the first few miles but this time, my quads really ached. It may be time to cut back on those long weekend runs.
I trudged along and didn’t walk until the first water stop at mile 4 or so. I took a Gu and walked for awhile. It felt so good to walk but then it was hard to get going.
I just told myself that this was simply a training run and just do it. (I tried to pretend that the snow was sand and the parking lots ocean – didn’t work last week and worked less this week.)
I ran most of the race alone except at the beginning when we ran with the 4 milers for awhile. At that point, I ran into someone from an old tennis team. I hadn’t seen her since 2002 and didn’t know that she was a runner. We chatted and it was nice to be running with someone.
My lower back didn’t hurt like last week. This time it was my upper back and left shoulder. It’s always something. At least I didn’t get blisters.
I walked again and again and took at GU at second water stop around mile 8.
At this point, the wind picked up and I zipped up my jacket and put my gloves back on.
I was so ready to be done and I had the choice of either running faster to end it quicker or just walking to ease the pain of running.
Well, I got a second wind and picked up my speed for awhile. Unfortunately it didn’t last.
The last mile seemed endless and I walked several more times. (At the mile 9 sign, my Garmin said 9.2…ugh…a long 10 miles).
It didn’t seem worth struggling to run. I knew I wouldn’t PR and I didn’t really care.
Finally I approached the finish line and mustered up enough energy to sprint. I wanted at least to beat 1:43.
And I did, I crossed at 1:42:50.
I couldn’t wait to get inside…
and have some hot soup (vegetable), bread and then, hot chocolate and cookies.
I finished 113 out of 145. They gave awards for the top 2 in each 10 year age group.
I was 5th among the speedy old ladies.
Considering how I felt the 2nd half of the race, I was happy with the results. It was a course PR (my 1st time on this course) and my 2nd fastest 10 miler ever.
mile 1 – 9:39
mile 2 – 9:55
mile 3 – 9:50
mile 4 – 10:10
mile 5 – 10:41 (water stop)
mile 6 – 10:26
mile 7 – 10:30 (short walk)
mile 8 – 10:46 (water stop)
mile 9 – 9:55
mile 10 -10:26 (more walks)
.1 – 7:16
As always, the second half was slower than the first but at least I got it back temporally for mile 9.
I was glad that I ran the race. I never regret running a race. Especially a free one.
But does it ever get easier? My pace since my half marathon has gotten slower each time.
As I said before, it’s time to cut back on the long runs .
Next weekend I am going up to Lake George for a 4 mile race. I am so excited to be leaving the gray, sceneryless HMRCC race courses. (Unfortunately it is an hour north and even colder up there!!)
Happy Running! How you are enduring the winter? Did you run this weekend?