My running schedule for the week called for, because of this race on Sunday (my usual long run day), an 8-miler on Friday. But Friday was a day of snow & ice, and some pretty cold temperatures. I wimped out and didn't run. I did, however, head out on Saturday, with a grand plan to run 3 miles by myself with no walk breaks, and then do 2 more miles with Marc. My plan fizzled down to me struggling to finish just 2 miles, and I gave up, saving my energy for the race the next day.
I lined up near the back of what we were told was the largest ever Winter Series race, set my watch for my regular run/walk interval, and got ready to run. The gun went off and I was off with the rest of the crowd. But instead of getting caught up with the flow, I focused on running my own race, keeping my own pace, and getting from the start to the finish in my own time, in my own way.
People passed me; I passed a few; but there was no "I can't let that woman in the pink shoes beat me" or "I have to catch up to the guy in the green hat" or "no way i'm gonna stay behind the girl in the purple". Slow, but steady, following the beeps of the watch telling me when to run and when to walk, I moved along, from the start to the finish, running and focusing on my race.
I was hoping to finish in about 55 minutes, but wasn't sure if I was going to be able to pull that off. But, surprisingly, I did. Slow and steady may not have won the race but it certainly helped me to have a good run; I had a decent race and a strong steady training run all rolled in to one. Very satisfying.
Winter Series 8k, 1/5/14
Finish time: 55:19 (garmin); 55:27 (official)
Pace: 11:08mpm (garmin);
Place: 313 out of 386 overall; 54 of 69 age group