Saturday, June 25, 2016

(Race) Week in Review

66 Miles
14M workout with 3 miles via 544/545/541, 800m jog in 322, 2 miles via 533/534, 800m jog in 328
1 mile in 522, 800m jog in 324, 800m in 240
10K Race in 34:48 at SF Pride 10K, for 1st place overall (male and female), Splits:  520, 552, 531, 524, 557, 533, 1:09

The highlight of this week was breaking (for the third time!) my 10K track PR from college in the SF Pride Run 10K race.  I feel so confident with this training cycle and I know that time off due to injuries back in Q4 2015 and into Q1 2016 really is helping me feel so fresh now.  There are so many metaphors with my running journey that I can continue to tie back into my life: that the lowest moments - like getting injured before the Trials - only bring some of the best moments - like running close to my 10K PR in my first race back.  This ties back to my life:  getting separated (low moment) has allowed me to do things I never considered doing and for me to learn how to wholly love again (best moments).  Happy sigh. I couldn't be in a better place right now.  Sure, there's more healing to be had, but I am trusting that I make good decisions and am surrounded by a slew of loving, wonderful people who love me for who I am.  But I digress.  

Quick race recap:  I decided a couple weeks ago to do the SF Pride 10K and then when the Orlando shootings happened, I knew that I needed to do this race so I signed up.  Looking at the results from years past, I knew that it would be very likely that I'd be solo for the majority of the 10K, so leading up to the race, I focused on the mental tenacity I wanted to leverage throughout the race.  I was really psyched to a run a race that supports the LGBT community, and the SF Pride Run race committee definitely lived up to my expectations.  My favorite part was that the race started late (around 9:20AM) and around 9:15, the race director said:  "It's 9AM...GAY TIME!" and everyone just laughed knowingly.  It was a great atmosphere and I definitely stood out doing my strides and typical pre-race exercises and drills.  

When the gun did finally go off, a couple of guys shot out and I eventually tucked in behind a couple for a mile, before ultimately passing them (including the 5K leaders) until I was alone around mile 2.  Fortunately, I had the support of the lead cyclist who was my main motivation.  We ran two 5K loops, and I passed through the 5K in first place, which confused the hell out of people.  On the next loop, I had to weave in and out of the 5K or 10K runners that I began to pass.  It wasn't too difficult and I was grateful for the practice because the SF half will have the same situation.  The course was uphill on one side of the loop and downhill on the other side of the loop.  This proved to be very difficult to keep myself motivated for during the 5th mile, when I was working hard to stay under 6:00 pace.  I barely saw Peter, who had sprinted all the way across the Polo fields to try to catch me on the other side.  (Side note - that was my fault because I'm pretty sure I said it wasn't far to the other side and I'm pretty sure it was almost a mile LOL).  

Representing Skechers in SF
Eventually, I made my way to the finish line, having no real clear indication of what I would run until I saw the overall time on the clock and I pushed hard to break 35:00.  After breaking the tape, I was (positively) overwhelmed with support from several people since they loved that I won the men's race too.  It was a really special moment because it was my first race in SF as a California resident and it supported something that matters to me.  

Ultimately, I'm very pleased with this race effort because it's only 12 seconds off my 10K road PR from 2015 Cooper River 10k and it's my first race that I've finished in over a year.  Also, it's my first race back and I ran sub-35!  I can't wait for the SF half because now I've practiced the same hills I'll be conquering again in just two months. 

After the race, Peter and I went to Judahlicious and then we went hiking at Point Reyes before heading back to South Bay.  It was a perfect, perfect day.


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