Saturday, June 13, 2009

Race Report

Sound to Narrows 12k race report:
First off I will say I have a much more positive outlook on life after this race compared to the last. I think I really needed to hear some of the comments you and some of my other runner friends had to offer me. The sweet taste of victory (hitting my time goals) will feel a whole lot better after all the sufferage and bullshit I have to go through to get there. Duh! Now onto the goods stuff. I had little expectations for this race since it is known to be fairly tough and usually people run it for fun, or they try to beat their previous times. I was doing it for neither. This was the race I started training for when I was fresh off my IT band injury 9 weeks ago. The timing of the race fit perfectly into my schedule because it is the week before marathon training and it was just long enough to get me back into shape. I have never run it before so I had nothing to compare it to.
True to Pacific NW summer conform, conditions were perfect - 59*, no wind, and overcast. I had my normal pre-run oatmeal 1 hour before the start. It so nice having the hubbs with me. The timing usually involves him being away at work for most races, so this was a treat. I had a chef, chauffeur, support crew, and photographer. I was stoked!

Pre-race smiles My strategy: run comfortably strong all the way through. Since it was all hills, I couldn't rely on mile splits or time.

elevation chart

My goal: Sub 1:15

Mile 1.5 was all down hill so what to say about that. What goes up, must come down right. I was really concentrating on my form here. Trying to run strong knowing that even though I had done about 10 minutes of plyos and warm - up, I didn't want to open it up and fly to hard right out of the gate.

Mile 1: 8:58

Mile 2: 9:23

Mile 3 & 4 had a major climb and I really wanted to make it up without stopping. I was really trying to draw energy from the strong runners ahead of me, but I had to stop towards the top. I didn't want to waste myself before the halfway point. A little high school kid picked me up before the top and helped get me through it. Thanks kid - good luck in your mile swim coming up Friday!

Mile 3: 10:17 (super proud of that split)

Mile 4: 10:04

Mile 5 had a sharp climb at the end of a long steady climb so I held on again for as long as I could. I tried to draft of a couple of women who were running very strong, but I just couldn't make it up without a little power walk.

Mile 5: 10:17 (again, super proud of that split and how weird that it's the same as mile 3)

The first half of mile six had somewhat steady terrain and I was able to regroup and mentally pump myself up. What a difference positive self - talk makes. I couldn't believe just last week I was actually talking myself down so much. Why did I do that to myself? I was closing in on the last mile. Mile 6.5 - 7 was the climb to the top where we started (remember that 1st mile 8:58 downhill split).

Mile 6: 10:08

By mile 7 all those hills were catching up to me and I had to stop so that I could finish strong. I am a little disappointed here though. I only walked a total of three times and each time I tried to keep it to a minimum (under 20 sec), but I must have walked longer here, plus it was all uphill so I know I was moving slower.

Mile 7: 11:49 (I didn't think I was going that slow)

The last half I knew I was so close to sub 1:15, I was trying to give it all I had. I was weaving in and out of people trying to beat the clock so hard.

I was really fighting the lactic here.

My eye was on the finish line - please let it be sub 1:15. I didn't even want to look at my watch, I just wanted to put my head down and go for the last gut check.

Final Time: 1:15:37

(10:04 ave pace/Total elevation gain: 4,425 ft.)

:38 seconds off, but I'm not going to let me get down about it. That was a hard f'ng course and next year who knows, maybe my goal will be sub 1:10!

Cooling down

More pics courtesy of my personal photographer (and it's my blog so I can have as many pictures of myself as I want right):

If you read that whole thing thanks! And thanks again for all your kind words after my last race. I really did get me through some of those tough spots today. Now I'm off to try and think of a good name for my next goal: Portland Marathon. It's my redemption race for the Seattle Marathon.


Niki said...

Wow!Awesome job girl! Those hills sound so tough!!Keep up the hard work!

D10 said...

You did a fantastic job!!! I also have to say very cute top.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend.

Hi! I'm Erin said...

Excellent job! It's always hard to set a time goal for a race you've never run, isn't it?

Now, if you could pass some of that positive attitude over this way, that would be awesome. Right now I'm in the same place you were after your previous race.

the gazelle said...

that's fantastic for that kind of climb! way to go. Sounds like a fun race, though. I love races like that!

joyRuN said...

Awesome job, Kristen!

A kick-ass job to start off Project Suck It (love that!). Well done.

X-Country2 said...

First, that red top is adorable! (A great color on you. And some great pics. You can tell he loves capturing you. :o)

Second, great job! Elevation races are TOUGH, and you have plenty to be proud of!

Alisa said...

Way to stay strong chica!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You ran a "holy hills" race and did so with excellent speed and consistency. Great work!

Jamie said...

You did awesome! Way to go girl! So close to your goal on what looks and sounds like a tough course you had never run before.

Amanda said...

Cute top, excellent job on a killer course!

Running and living said...

Excellent job! I knwo how frustrating and tough hilly courses are. I have a friend who power walks all the uphills and swears by this technique - she makes it up on the downhills. Ana-Maria

aron said...

whoa those were some serious hills! you did awesome!!!! congrats on another great race. love all the focus and determination on your face in those pics :)

KK said...

Great job, Kristen! You battled it out and came out on top-that is such a great feeling. You look super studly (in a feminine way) and strong in those pictures, too. :)


seejessrun said...

Great job and close enough to goal! I can definitely tell that you lift weights.

Amy said...

Loved the totally didn't have too many and I just loved them.

Great race! Holly cow - an elevation gain of over 4K? You did amazing!

jen said...

Super belated congrats on the race! You nailed it. I love your new attitude. :) Those pics are amazing.