Monday, February 11, 2019

Race Report: Frostbite Four

I have been waiting to post this, as I was hoping there would be some photos of me from race day, but it appears like they mostly got photos of the two mile and just the top speedsters in the 4 mile. Spoiler alert: I was not in the top speedster category. :P

Melissa and I got to Beresford around 10 a.m., and while I felt like I had light years of time in 2018, I felt super duper rushed. We grabbed our bibs, and headed out for a warm up. I had hoped for 2-3 with some strides, but we only had time for two. I debated about what I should wear for most of the warm up, ultimately deciding on a tank top over a light long sleeve and that was definitely the right choice. It was probably pushing 40 at the start of the race and the glorious sun was beating down on us. I wore capris, but definitely wished I had shorts after about 7 minutes of running.

The warm up felt ok, the strides felt great. We had time to grab a quick bathroom, and it was time to get on the bus. This morning is flying by! I had hoped that Melissa and I could work together; I knew she'd be faster than me, but I was hoping to chase her a bit. The plan was to start around 8:15 pace, and hopefully drop to 8 or sub 8 for miles 2-3. We were together for maybe the first half mile, right around that 8:15 pace. She left me and looked like she was out for a Sunday stroll, not like she was running that fast. I had hoped that starting conservative would lead to a faster finish, but my legs felt pretty heavy and blah from the gun.

Mile 1 8:18

Instead of speeding up in mile 2 for a much beloved negative split, I looked down to see that I was running around an 8:33 pace. EEPS! I put my foot on the gas and started to push and was able to drop the pace down to what my first mile was, but man I was giving a lot of effort to get there.

Mile 2 8:18

About the halfway point, I knew that there wasn't going to be a massive negative split happening, and I'd be lucky not to slow down considerably based on how I was feeling. I factored my finishing time to be around 33 minutes and was so bummed, as my original goal was sub 32. Gah. Luckily during this mile I gained on a small group that was ahead of me, so I wasn't running solo anymore. This helped me focus on something other than how sucky I felt.

Mile 3 8:18

For the final mile, I put on my power Eminem song, expecting my legs to just do their thing, as they've been conditioned to do in this song. Except they didn't. And then we turned and started going into the wind for the first time this race. Uff da. The 605 staff had a sort of informal challenge of boys vs girls with gender placings, so I focused on catching up and passing two females to help slightly. :P

Mile 4 8:01 (8:17 pace, my watch read 3.97)

I finished the 4 miles (or 3.97) in 32:54 just sneaking in under 33 minutes for a pace of, you guessed it 8:18. My heart rate monitor went wonky about halfway through the race, so I don't have specific data on that, but I can tell that through 2.3 ish miles I was working my tail off, which was my ultimate goal if the pace goal wasn't there.

Melissa and I continued for 2 more miles to cool down after the race. I had a flare up in my left rib with about a mile to go which killed during the cool down, but eventually loosened up and relaxed. Uff.

After the race, I was super bummed. I really thought that I was in better shape than this race showed. As I sat with it throughout the weekend, I realized that where I am with my training this spring is different from last year. This year, I needed to mentally take a break after Dallas. I knew I had an intense cycle from February to mid May, followed by another marathon cycle starting in June. Last year, I trained for a fall 10 mile and a late January half marathon. I was a lot more focused on speed, and we had a gorgeous November-January to train.

Last year I was in almost peak form in February, which is why I shocked the hell out of myself at this race last year. seriously. I think I ran 15 seconds/mile faster than my goal. That never happens! Unfortunately, because I was in such great shape so early in the season last year, my spring races suffered; I had an injury flare up in March and none of my spring half marathons really showcased the shape that I was in. I peaked way too early.

Hopefully this race shows that I'm right where I need to be with my spring training kicking off. I'd much rather sacrifice a 4 mile PR for a half marathon PR, or top 3 race time!

And it was a super fun day. There were so many of my running buddies there. Lots of 605 Running Co. friends, SFWR friends, some of the athletes I coach. And my running besties both got PRs. So it was fun and I'm glad I did it!

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