Friday, February 24, 2017

Best Damn Race Safety Harbor

Half #72
Gina, Carolyn and I headed up to Safety Harbor, super early race morning. Gina was going to run the 10K and then the 5K. Carolyn and I were running the half. We got a great parking spot, then headed over to pickup our packets. We then headed back to the car, to wait for about half an hour. While getting all of my gear ready, I discovered that I had left my ipod shuffle at home! I couldn’t believe I was going to have to run this race without music! I’ve done if for triathlons, but this is different! It helps me keep a quicker pace. What a bummer. L Gina’s race got started about 30 minutes before ours. We were able to watch the 10K start, then head to the porta-potties, then watch the lead 10K group pass by us. We got to see Gina, before we headed to the start area. I put myself near the 1:50 pacer, but I knew I wouldn’t be able to stay with him. No speed work in the weeks leading up to the race! And, once again, my stomach was bothering me! I need to pay better attention to what I’m eating in the few days leading up to races. After the national anthem was sung, we were off!
I really enjoy this course. We head north, next to the water, then turn left, and then north again, until we get to Pilippe Park. This park is beautiful. My favorite part of the course. I had been keeping up with the 1:50 pacer, who kept telling us jokes, but I had a feeling I might be losing him soon. There were a couple of hills in this park. I managed to pull ahead, then, when we were heading back out, he (and the group) caught up to me on an uphill. It worked out great, as I was able to stay to their left, letting them block the wind, coming off of the water. As we headed out of the park, I fell back on the long, gradual uphill climb, just before mile 5. Just before Mile 6, we pass by the finish area. There are always lots of people out here cheering, which makes it a lot of fun. Miles 1 through 6 -8:18, 8:10, 8:15, 8:27, 8:27, 8:35, 8:53,
Philippe Park

Now I was noticing my times start to really slow down. I had a very loud breather behind me, then next to me then in front of me for a couple of miles! At first, I thought the grunting meant she was having troubles. I kept looking over my shoulder at her. Then, when she got closer to me, she seemed to be ok, she just kept making loud noises. Grunting, barking(!) and other strange sounds. I almost stopped to walk, just so she could get ahead of me! Thankfully, she did pull ahead enough for me not to hear her. I had forgotten about how many little hills there are! The one at mile 10, which I think is really the last one, was the last straw! I needed to eat my Honey Stingers anyway, so I walked up half of it while I ate! Once it was flat again, I started running. We start heading back just after mile 11. Those last 2 miles were the longest! I did manage to pass the heavy breather, about a mile from the finish. I was so happy to make the right hand turn and then pick up the pace to the finish!  Miles 7 through 13.1 – 9:11, 8:37, 8:54, 9:29, 9:19, 9:04, 0:45
Finish: 2:54:28

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