I want to be careful with this post not to come off as a poor sport or even worse an emasculating wife, however I think that we all know that Ian would have already devoted several posts to gloating had he won. But he didn’t, so I know that you’ll all join me in saying: Haaaaa ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Up until last Monday I didn’t think I’d ever actually catch up to Ian, but the gap between our 10K times went from 13 minutes last year to 5 minutes this year and to be completely honest with you I think he’s lost a step.
Races are won and lost in training and I am totally hooked on the FIRST plan. If you’re not sick of hearing Ian & I talk about it then you haven’t been here very long... just wait, you’ll get there. You only run 3 times a week, omitting easy runs which I hate anyway, they’re as useless as a banker in a financial crisis. (Too harsh?) Each run has a specific purpose and is rarely less than 4 miles. You calculate ambitious paces using complex algorithms and spend 12 weeks mostly missing them. For several years now, it has been quite effective for both of us, although obviously more so for me. I think my edge has come in the addition of other training. I am now training for my second sprint triathlon- which means I bike and swim several times a week whereas Ian only ever bikes to our friends house 2 blocks away and would rather [insert just about anything here] than swim. These disciplines have added muscles I didn’t get from running and have done a good job of removing evil fat. The more muscle you have the more efficient you are- muscles propel- fat just jiggles.
Like cramming for an exam, I ate super healthy for 2 weeks before my race and only consumed 2 glasses of wine over 10 days. This was spurred by this chart on runner’s world. WOW. I dropped 4 lbs like nothing when I removed alcohol, sugar, limited my portions and ate useful foods. Who knew? RunnersWorld.com has some really helpful nutrition articles for those of us who know little about it. Use these articles to get started.
Having given all of this training advice, I am not an expert on any of it, nor do I have any authority to speak on it. It’s never stopped me before, but if it doesn’t work for you then you must have done something wrong.
All that blabbering and now the actual race report. The Bolder Boulder has always been our favorite race. Because this race is such a big deal for us, my adrenaline is always at an all time high on race morning. This year I planned to start at my goal pace and hold it throughout the course instead of speeding up at the end. For most training runs I try to run negative splits when possible, but that would have made my final miles way too fast. So this year my adrenaline rush got me through miles 1 & 2.
SHUT UP AND RUN WOMAN!
Beyond mile 2 took a little more work. My biggest problem in races has been my head. I talk myself out of what I can actually do. Ian’s been telling me for years I’m underachieving. My head says “Aw, it’s too painful.” “You’re breathing too hard.” I recently read that pain is often made up in your brain and not even real. It is amazing the things our brains can control. I have come to grips with the pain of speed and decided to run through it aided by the GI Jane quotes in my playlist. It’s also a matter of how much you want it, the more I want it, the less I care about the pain. I kept telling myself it wouldn’t even hurt 5 minutes after I finished.
The race felt much shorter this year. It was shorter, 6 minutes shorter to be exact. This really helped. Even though I was in more pain, it didn’t last as long. Knowing the course also helped. Surprises in races get in my head, but this year I ran the tangents and was really happy to know what was coming. Hills seem easier if I know how long they’ll last.
I knew I had run as hard as possible because I almost hurled on the metal floor in the stadium stretch- I believe Viper calls this the puke threshold. This happened in the Skirt Chaser 5K last year and was my best time. It is now my standard. No dry heaves = too slow of a race.
The last mile (9:09) was slower than I wanted to finish but I was really happy with my time, 58:52. I love to sprint it out and beat 3 people at the end- like I just won the whole thing. This time it was just an even pace, oh well. I finished. I cried. I tried not to be giddy around Ian. Then I drank a bucket of frozen margaritas.