The Carlisle Resolution 10K was rescheduled for Sunday Feb 1st - and I couldn't make up my mind whether to run it or not. I had the deferred place from 2 weeks previously, and I still really needed a race to "keep me honest" (as Ellie G put it) and see where I was at, but I've also been rather lacking in my Sunday long runs (due to the initial 10K plan, and then the masters' relay) and I couldn't decide which would benefit me more.
In the end I thought I should force myself to run the 10K and then, if I felt like it, add some miles on at the end. The bonus to this plan, was that the race would only be on if the roads were clear, and the roads at home are still a nightmare with snow and compacted snow frozen into ice.
The race organisers had delayed the start by an hour to allow for conditions to be as good as possible, but they needn't have worried as Sunday dawned bright and sunny, even if the wind was bitingly cold ("real temp 1 degree, feels like -4" according to the forecast). It was difficult to decide exactly what to wear to race in, and funnily enough, all 4 of us running for DRC ended up wearing a diffierent combination of vest, tshirt, longsleeve, shorts, tights, and gloves. I had done a few miles as a warm up and had thought it would be warm racing - and so stripped back to vest and shorts (and my fingers definitely felt chilly on the way round ;-( ).
I knew that the 2 guys from my club would be targetting me, and one had even said this to several people beforehand, but I tried to ignore them and just run my own race. I had hoped to be near the 37minute mark, and so they'd said that they might try to take a pace from me early on. The roads weren't closed for the race so we were milling about on one side of a road, letting cars go by etc, when suddenly a starting horn was fired (with no countdown). There was no chip mat to cross, and so I guessed our ankle timing bands were just to aid a fast upload of results after the race.
Considering the pre-race chat, it was interesting to see the lads go out fast in front of me, but I drew alongside them in the first mile. One of them does almost all of his running on a treadmill, and unfortunately this meant that the race caught him out, as it was rathger "undulating". As soon as we started the first climb, he dropepd back from me and I didn't see him again (though I was expecting to for almost all the race, as I had thought that he would be faster than me on the day). I'd run the course several years previously (though it was then on a midweek summer's evening) and although I'd forgotten the sudden sharp descent and ascent on one of the backroads I definitely remembered miles 4-5.5. In the summertime, the road has just seemed to climb gradually on and on into a nice headwind, and in the wintertime it seemed no different.....eurgh!
Still, I had been told just prior the the race starting that the ladies' course record was 38:05, and so even though I felt like I was dying a death and really just wanted to stop - a quick look at my watch at the 5 mile mark reassured me that if I could only keep going, I would breat that time. Due to the sun in my eyes, it was almost impossible to see the finish (well, it would've been impossible anyway, as it involved a sharp left hand turn off the road into the racecourse, and then a sharp right around the front of the building) but I could see bodies and hear people cheering, and was greeted by the lovely words "Well done, a new ladies' CR".
|Running in for the CR ;-)|
I had a drink, congratulated the lads as they finished 40s apart from each other, put some tights and a jacket on, and then headed out again. The 10K route was like a lollipop, so as I ran out I could cheer on other friends running in. This time round the loop was considerably slower than the previous one, and so I made it back just after the prizegiving, but at least that gave me another excuse for a short break before I did one more tour of the loop of the lollipop.
All in all, a decent day.....clear roads, sunshine, a 10K race with a couple of extra laps round part of it (though as each loop was slower than the previous one, I think you'd term it a regression run.....ie the opposite of a progression run) and a trip to a garden centre for a nice feed....and a return home to find my driveway and road still completely blocked with slippy compacted snow and ice!