Saturday, December 8, 2012

Run Like the Dickens

With the void left by not being able to kick out my Turkey Trot and get a PR, I took to the streets of Holly, MI this morning with just that goal in mind: PR that sh*t.  Mind you, this race was not on my radar.  The Santa Run is usually my bookend for the year, and I usually don't even think about any more races located in this calendar month.  Last night I saw there was a 10K for this race, and got a little twinkle in my eye, though.  I decided to text J about it and, told myself, "If he texts back that he could go and wanted to go, it's on.  I'll take another swing at PRing the 10K"  I don't need a running buddy for every official race, but having him join in pushed me over the hump.  I was on the fence, and I probably wouldn't have went on my own.

It's better with friends
Parking and registration was quick and painless for us, being 45 minutes early, but I'm sure it was a little harder for those that came later.  There was a good chunk of people wearing festive attire.  I was as well, but it ended up hidden beneath my new waterproof jacket, due to the rain/sleet that turned into snow that began just before the race (I was being a wimp).
Just Before Race Start
When we started it was a little crowded, but cleared up really nice, really quick.  Probably because it was a pretty fast crowd out there, and I was in the back.  My goal was to keep moving as hard as I could and bank a little time.  Then J passed me, and I thought if I could tail him, I would easily PR.  That didn't happen.  I started losing ground to him by the second mile, and then I had to stop and retie the drawstring of my windbreaker pants.  By then he was gone, and within the same mile I had a shoe come untied.  So I stopped to tie it and double knot that one and the other.  Pretty much every race I make sure everything is in place and tied tight and my shoes are doubled so the don't come undone, but, nope, not today.  

At this point I'm figuring a PR is out of range.  I thought about slowing up and enjoying the run, but I told myself to keep pushing and think positive.  That didn't work.  I felt exhausted after 3 miles.  I could feel my strides shortening and my pace slowing, but I kept pushing myself anyway.  At this point I'm thinking there's about a 4% chance a PR is on the table.  I was just mentally and physically in a bad place, and I figured my time was going to turn out equally poor.  

By 4.5 miles, I wanted to be done, but I saw someone's "If it doesn't challenge us, it can't change us" quote on the back of their shirt, so I kept pushing as much as i could.  By mile 5 I still wasn't doing much better, but I decided to see if I could kick it up any, and I was absolutely shocked when I could and started picking up some people that just passed me.  I thought I saw the street with the finish line at probably 5 1/2-5 3/4 and made a mistaken mad dash toward an oasis of "plenty more race to go you idiot," and had to back off a bit.  

Finally we made the last turn, and I saw 5-:--, with the rest of the numbers being pretty much indeterminable from where I was, but I knew I was still under an hour.  I also knew I just needed to beat a 59:20.  I gave about all I could down the stretch, and crossed right about in that 59:15-59:20 range on the clock.  I figured with chip time I probably had it, but I was too busy sucking air and feeling my muscles burning to think or talk to J, who met me at the end.  

We went inside to grab a water and some of the holiday goodies (apple and orange slices, bananas, cookies, cupcakes, etc.).  I went apple, orange, chocolate coconut cupcake (burned calories recovered).  I didn't sign up for the heavyweights to avoid any potential prizes we had to stay for, and we didn't even look at times.  I've made J late for work twice already by suckering him into runs on days he has to work early afternoon, I wasn't going to make him late again.  We left almost immediately.

I didn't know my time for sure until about an hour ago, but I got it.  I ran a 58:46, which isn't a big chunk off of 59:20.  I'll take it, though, especially on a run that felt horrible the entire time and one where I had to stop and tie my stuff up twice.  I can't believe I actually got it, but that's why you keep going and don't give up, even on the bad days.

Everything's wrong....well it's all right.  

Nail a 10K PR up next to all the distances I've improved upon this year.


  1. nice work! It's great reaching a PR especially when the race doesn't go as planned. Congrats!

  2. A PR is a PR no matter how big or small! Way to go!!!!

  3. Nice job on that 10K PR! That was a nice Christmas gift for you, but you had to work for it. A 34 second PR is nothing to sneeze at, pardon the pun.



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