Yesterday I ran a 5 mile race. The description said it was a fast start, then through a covered bridge, up a hill and a fast finish. Yes, we went through a covered bridge. The rest? All lies.
It was really chilly and windy at the start, so I was pretty tense at the beginning. This translated to difficulty regulating my breathing once we started running. The first mile was 8:23, but it felt way harder than that. Mile 2 was around 8:30 and I was wheezing like a pack a day smoker.
We went through a lovely covered bridge and then we hit the “hill”. Just for the record, I’m not intimidated by hills. For those of you in the know, I run up the hill from Rosslyn on a regular basis. This hill was like the steepest part of the Rosslyn hill, but that same steepness for over a half mile. I walked it. Mile 3 was around 12:20 something (Garmin was giving me fits).
As I crested the hill, I was greeted by alternating scary steep downhill and flats. I was finally feeling good. I guess the walking finally got my breathing under control? I raced down. Mile 4 was 7:55.
After a bit more downhill, there was one more surpise – an uphill to the finish. Fast finish, my a$$. I was planning to just trot it in, but a woman was coming up behind me. She made a move to pass me and I thought “oh, hell no!” So we booked it to the finish. I beat her by a few steps and nearly threw up.
Final time: 45:50. Not a PR, but a damn good time for a hellacious course! (I overheard one of the fast kids comment beforehand that he could not come within two minutes of his five mile PR on this course, so not bad.)
On tap today? A hilly 3.5 mile race. I really need to start looking at course elevation before signing up for races. Just saying.