3mi/24min in Friedsam with the Running Club. Uh Oh. My cold is coming back with a vengeance. Starting to get a fever too. Feels like a sinus infection.
0mi. Wow. Feeling sick. Went to the doctor's and got meds for a sinus infection. I have a fever and my sinuses in my face hurt.
0mi. Still sick. Meds not working yet.
5mi/33min on the roads solo + drills and sprints. Starting to feel ok.
3.5mi/27min with kids at Running Club. Feeling decent.
32min/4.5mi in Pisgah with Griffin. Good run, cold weather. I feel healthy now. Ready or not, Lil Rhody is tomorrow.
13mi*/1:20 - Lil Rhody Runaround 8mi trail race - 46:03 (5:45) - 2nd place.
I was excited and nervous heading into this year's race. I always want to do well here and it's a goal race every year for me. I was curious to see how my body would feel after 2 weeks of being sick and being on meds for a sinus infection. I have to say, during the race it felt fine. I was at 100%. I debated my race strategy multiple times as I was warming up and even jogging to the line. I knew Mike Galoob was super fit and I wasn't sure if I should sit behind him and let him lead and just try to stick with him. As the gun went off, I decided to run my usual race and take it out fast. I immediately had a small gap of a few seconds. I really didn't expect this, I figured Mike and possibly Ryan Carrara would be right on my heels. I kept my lead through the campground and back into the trails. Coming off one of the long bridges there is a sharp left-hand turn, it's always the first place I look back in the race. I glanced back and Mike was 5 seconds back, but no one else was in sight. I got the dreadful feeling that I wouldn't be holding off Mike for long and he would be catching me soon. This premonition proved correct and Mike caught me right at the Vin-Gormley covered bridge.
He used the demoralizing strategy of talking to me as he caught up. "Wow this is fun! I usually can't see you at this point in this race. How you feeling?" He clearly exclaimed without breathing heavy at all.
I gasped back, "Good." That was my best poker face and I tried to pretend I felt fine. I don't think he was buying it because about 5 seconds later he asked again, "Are you doing ok?". With that he took the lead and danced easily away from me. I tried to not let him get a gap. I tried to stay on his back and not let the elastic snap. It lasted for about 10 seconds and then snap he pulled away smoothly while I just tried to keep tough. I told myself maybe he would struggle late, just keep him close. Ahh the lies we tell ourselves, deep down I knew he was gone and I wasn't going to win.
I tried to stay tough and when we dumped out onto Buckeye Brook Rd, I checked his lead as he headed back onto the trails. It was 22 seconds. I told myself to get tough make it hurt it's only 22 seconds, work hard, close that damn gap! The last time I saw him was after the ledges climb and then the hard right-hand turn switchback. I was too tired to check his lead but it looked bigger that 22 seconds. I never saw him again and I knew he was running fast and I also knew that I was starting to really suffer and slow down. After the climb where the Ornstein's were sitting, I stopped thinking about catching Mike and I started looking back. Was Ryan Carrara lurking back there about to pass me? Ben Nephew? Muddy? Jonny? Thankfully, I couldn't see anyone and I figured I had 2nd place in the bag.
Coming out onto Kings Factory Rd, I was tired. Some years, I feel strong and really smoke the road section to the finish. This year, I was in survival mode just desperate to see the finish line. Mercifully, I hit the turn into the parking lot, I heard my family cheering for me, and I crossed the finish line (ending my suffering). I was disappointed to not break 46min as I consider running in the 45's my standard for a decent race. I saw Galoob and congratulated him on an awesome run and was happy to hear he broke the course record. The old record was 44:36 by Stephen Herrera. Mike broke the record by 3 seconds!
It didn't take long for a whole train of guys to come into the finishing chute. Jonny ran a monster pr and it seemed that everyone was pr' ing left and right. I was glad to see everyone run so well. I saw some chatter on Facebook regarding the perfect conditions being the reason for all the fast times up front and I'm going to chime in with I disagree. The conditions have been like this many times. The difference this year was the fitness and depth of everyone in the top 15 or so. Everyone pushed each other to fast times and people are in great shape this year. The conditions were good, but they've been good a lot at this race. Great job to everyone!
On the cool down I was bonking and Jen wanted to leave and I gladly got a ride home with her. Fun times at Jonny's house after the race. I hope I can get myself back in shape next year to run in the 44's and challenge Mike's record, but I don't know, damn that's fast. We'll see.
Total for the week:
29mi. Not a great week. I feel recovered from my sinus infection. Lil Rhody was fun. Time to reset and figure out my goals for the winter.