Monday, October 22, 2012

Getting better with time

Yesterday, I completed the Army Ten Miler. In 2010, I couldn't run this race due to an injured ankle, last year I finished in 2 hours 13 minutes and this year, I finished much, much faster. I had a bit of dejavu from 2010 on Monday after rolling my ankle while running down stairs in boot camp.  I took the rest of the week off to rest and ice it, so that I wouldn't be sidelined again for this race. It was very painful to be on the sidelines in 2010 and I enjoyed it so much last year that the thought of not being able to run it this year brought me great sadness. I had only run a few times in the 4 weeks since my Ironman 70.3 Cozumel and after hurting my ankle again, I was a extremely nervous on race morning... but I was committed to try.

We met up with several ladies that morning for Team Usual Suspects photos, decided on a post race meet up spot and we took off.
Team Usual Suspects!

Me and Tania

Lisa, Me and Tania
About to get it IN
My friend Tania got a bib at the last minute to run with me. She really helped to pace me for the first 3 miles and then she had to take off at her usual speedy pace. Pier was being her usual Spectator Extraordinaire self and showed up at mile 1 and mile 5. I was so surprised to make it to the 5 mile mark before 1 hour (it usually takes me 1:05 to run 5 miles). The bands and spectators were amazing and some of the runners were mind blowing! There was a guy running and playing a piccolo the entire time! The 14th Street bridge kicked my butt again this year, but I got across it by taking it light post by light post, alternating running and walking. There was a lady who told me that I was pacing her the entire race and I couldn't stop now. When I started to walk in mile 9, she was right there with a positive message to get me going again. I started to think about how my friends would be at the finish line when I finished. I decided to push through my exhaustion and try to achieve my stretch goal, which was to finish in under 2 hours. My goal was 2 hours flat, but with that lady pacing me in Mile 9, I knew that my stretch goal was possible. My legs hurt, I was exhausted and thirsty, but I kicked up the pace and finished strong in 1:55! I cut 10 minutes off my 10K time and finished the entire 10 mile run 18 minutes faster than last year!

Me and Pier

If I do this race again next year, I will push for 1:45 with a stretch goal of under 1:40. I may not be racing at all next year (more on that later), but if I do, I will try my best to meet these goals.