Whew! I squeezed in a October race before it was too late! Late last week I realized that there was only one more weekend in October! I had made a goal to run (at least) one race a month at the beginning of the yeah. I’ve been doing very well all year, but somehow October was trying to sneak by me! How dare you, October! I quickly ran a serach on runningintheusa.com to see what options I had.
There wasn’t that many….well, actually there was a ton, but a lot of them were on Saturday, which I had to be at work for Pumpkin Bootcamp, so that wasn’t an option. I narrowed it down to Sunday, and then finally picked a race:
It was a 5K race, down in Littleton, CO literally across the street from where I work! Convenient. Not that I had to work that day (at least not as a trainer – I did work the Bronco’s game, but that’s neither here nor there – Back on topic!).
The race started at 9am, but I still needed to register, so I woke up at 7am. After going to a halloween party the night before, I seriously contemplated sleeping in but somehow I dragged myself out of bed, down the stairs, and to my car.
It was actually a perfect fall day for a race! Not to hot, not to cold; Just right! I warmed up with a run to the registration tent, ran back to the car to drop off my tshirt and grab my camera so I could take pictures of all the wonderful costumes! Jill, these ones are for you! (If you don’t know who I’m talking about, check out Jogginginjeans.com or Best Race Signs or Best Race Costumes)
After taking pictures, I finally made my way to the starting line. I met a group of runners sponsored by the Boulder Running Company. They were all very nice and one even had an ironman tattoo on his calf! I asked one of the ladies and she said that Boulder Running Company pays for their races and gives them shoes! MAN! How do I get a gig like that!?
I also met a fellow cross country coach! I knew this one lady looked familiar and after commenting on her costume we got to talking. She coached for Golden High School, I believe. I love talking to people at races!
With high fives and fist bumps from fellow runners, we were off! I honestly didn’t plan on running hard or “competing,” but once the count down was said, my competitive instincts took over. With an average of a little over an 8:00 minutes per mile pace, I was keeping up with the leaders of the pack!
The course wound through Hudson Gardens (a local outdoor events center), and along the South Platte Trail. This is my normal running trail; easily accessible from my house and goes for miles and miles in either direction. The part that we were on for the race is pretty far south from my house., maybe about 11 miles down. I barely reach this area on my longest runs when training for my marathons.
I started off at a decent pace, not trying to overdo it. After about half a mile, I kicked it into gear!! I was passing a few people here and there. It wasn’t until we reached a turn around that I realized that there was NOT that many people in front of me! “That’s odd,” I thought. I kept at it, picking people to match in pace or catch up to. It wasn’t until about half way that I felt pretty taxed, cardio wise. I slowed a bit.
We crossed over a bridge and I saw the tombstone cardboard cutout that marked the miles. We were at mile 2. After passing it, I told myself that there was less than a mile left; less than 10 minutes and I’ll be done! I didn’t realized at the time, but it was really only 8 min left of running. In the half mile behind me, a few runners had passed me, but now, it was time to let my competitive nature kick in even more. I decided I wouldn’t let anyone else pass me (except men – hehehe). And I held true! Only two people passed me, both men, in that last mile. I had kicked it into high gear and finished strong!
I didn’t PR this race (only 30 seconds or so slower), but I did place 4th in my age group! Must have been all the
beer carb loading the night before.
I finished with a time of 24:52, which averages out to a 8:02 pace!! I’m really happy with this time because since resuming marathon training, I have been feeling like I lost a lot of fitness and speed. This gives me a little bit of a confidence boost that I’m right back to where I was during my first marathon training. I was 30 overall out of 233 runners and the 10th female.
I always like to see what it would have taken to move up just one place and be in 3rd, so I checked out the lady’s time before me in my age group. She had three minutes on me!!! Isn’t that crazy!? And the winner of my age group (and first female) was the other cross country coach I was talking to in the beginning! Go figure! After we finished, I approached her and told her she was fast! She smiled and thanked me.
The post race party included a local 80’s tribute band, games for the kids, and face painting. I hung out a little bit to stretch while looking at everyone’s costumes and then made my way home.
The Halloween Hustle was great local, small race. I think this was the 3rd year they had done it, but they definitely put together a great event!
Hallucination Sports Information (the company that puts together this race.