Finishing Time: 1:21:19
Average Pace: 8:08/mi
overall finishing place:1262/7019
gender place: 106/1028
age group place: 382/4313
Yay! This was absolutely an awesome race. I am still smiling as I remember the brisk morning run through downtown Minneapolis to the capital in St. Paul. I was so excited because Carol and Milt Vasich were there to cheer for me along with Mike. They got up so early to drop me off at the Metrodome at 6:30am (the race started at 7!) It was still dark out as they wished me luck!
Over the years, I have learned that a slow start is the best way for me to ease into a race. When I start out too hard, things tend to go downhill (uphill is more like it) about halfway through the race. This summer I have eased into each of my races, and I have ended up feeling great and averaging faster paces overall. So, I have learned to let myself feel it out and hold steady on each incline.
By the time I hit the Guthrie Theater along the west bank, I was in cruise control. The views along the river were mystical, something out of Lord of The Rings. The fog was lifting as the sun was rising.
I saw Mike and family at Franklin Bridge and East River Parkway. It's always pretty fun when you catch sight of your fans before they see you. They were squinting into the sunlight trying to see me, and I basically high-fived them and headed south onto East River Parkway before they even knew what was happening! Mike is actually a super running fan. Seriously, when I describe to my running buddies how many times my husband manages to cheer for me during the course of the race, they are astounded. What can I say? He's a pro, and a truly devoted husband too, I might add.
That's Mike (with my new fancy smartphone) trying to use the tracking device to see where I am on the course.
I was shooting for under 1:30, but I thought it would be cool if I could maintain a speedier pace...faster than my 8:30/mi during the last road half on Aug. 30th. Feeling strong as I headed up Summit Ave, I decided to go for it. Here are my splits for the last five miles:
mile 6: 8:35/mi
mile 7: 8:24/mi
mile 8: 7:50/mi
mile 9: 7:47/mi
mile 10: 7:39/mi
Mile 6 was the steep-ish hill up East River Road onto Summit, and the rest of the miles were just a steady incline up Summit until the last mile downhill to the capital. I don't know what the heck got into me during those last three. Maybe I should have run faster in the middle of the race, but to be perfectly honest, I love having some "juice" at the end. It helps me to hold it together and feel light and easy as I go.
I was super excited at the finish line, and pretty ready to be done for the morning. I am thrilled with the time, and I know this race is just the beginning...