January 3, 2005 at 5:55 pm #2109
I decided to do this last minute, because I enjoyed it so much last year. Didn’t expect much since I was out for New Year’s Eve Eve and New Year’s Eve. But the 12:30 start was appealing. I only managed a mug of coffee before driving 30 minutes from my friend’s house to Veteran’s Park in NJ (my PR park). Met up with a few people from my local running club and chitchatted, feeling strange in shorts and a shimmel. Due to a highly abnormal temp of 61 with 53% humidity, I felt warm – quite literally – for the first time since September. And I was starving, having not eaten since dinner the night before.
BANG! The gun went off, and we headed down into the aspahlt and around the soccer field. I hit mile 1 way too fast and already feeling like crap. At 1.25 we veered off the asphalt onto a trail, and at 1.5 we switched to a half mile of boardwalk. Mile 2 marked a grateful return to asphalt and a slower, truer pace. We went up an elevated pass between a lake? reservoir? and an open field. This is the 4th time I’ve passed that sight in a race, and it gets more beautiful each time. A short steep uphill back into the woods and onto mile 3 where I was hurtin’ for certain, and boiling hot.
Mile 4 snaked back around and then for a long uphill (what went down in mile 1 had to go up). A pair of walkers was on the far left, where I was running. I moved to the right; they moved to the right. I moved to the left; they moved to the left. The woman gave me a look of displeasure and I said forget this. I indicated I would be running straight, and figured if they didn’t move to let me pass I’d mow ’em down. And thus I ran right into the woman and knocked her on her ass. I came up out of the woods for the second pass around the soccer field and knew I was close to home. I was feeling horrible thanks to my two day celebration, going out too fast, and my recently lackluster training. Despite this, I poured it on with .1 to go and managed to pass 3 people in the chute. I was particularly proud of passing the 73 year old man who shook my hand for beating him. 🙄
Final: 50:31, 10:06 pace, 303/380 finishers, beating 20% of the pack. Splits: 9:10, 10:10, 10:28, 10:29, 10:14. Continued my PR streak with a course PR by a whopping 9 seconds, though I ran the race better last year. Running on 3 surfaces in one picturesque race was cool, and I saw I still have some speed. Nice way to set up 2005, a year for which I have VERY high hopes.
Next up: Disney Marathon on 1/9.
January 3, 2005 at 6:31 pm #17174
Not a bad way to start off the new year. 😀
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