As I have mentioned before, the Hudson Mohawk Runners Club sponsors FREE races throughout the winter for its members. The course is pretty boring but free is free.
This weekend, they offered distances of 3M, 10K and 25K. I haven’t really started training for my March 5 half yet but I am trying to keep a 6 mile weekend base distance. So the 10K would be perfect.
For some reason, I didn’t run this race last year but I did in 2015 & 2013.
I have run a fair amount of 10ks and my PR is 57:03. I haven’t been particularly successful on this course. In 2015, I finished in 1:00:24 and 1:08:18 in 2013.
As per my “relaxing” theme for the year, I wouldn’t be trying for a PR. I planned to just run and have fun.
I got lucky with the weather. It was sunny and a balmy 30 degrees. As usual on this campus, it was windy.
I left early to get parking since these races are often crowded and there could be other events going on at UAlbany. But there didn’t seen to be as many runners as in previous weeks.
What I love about this local race is that you get to see a lot of people that you know.
I immediately bumped into many familiar faces and even some runners that I haven’t seen in awhile. (I met 2 more runners who are doing the Shape Half in April 🙂 )
I wound up talking to Sherri as I did last race and we stayed indoors until the last minute and then made our way outside. However she was running the 3 miler and they lined up in a different location.
When I got to 10k start, I found Judy who was running the 10K also.
As I’ve mentioned in my previous race post, the Winter Series races are very informal – no bibs, no starting mat, no timing chips, etc. So I try to start not too far from the front.
As usual, when you start up front, you immediately get passed by by it seems everyone. These races attract all the speedy local runners too.
I just told myself that this was simply a fun run and just take it at your own pace. Having not warmed up, my legs felt like lead and I couldn’t get moving. Then I looked down at my Garmin and realized that it was dead. I had not charged it!! Duh!
It wouldn’t be so bad if there were mile markers at this race. But there were none!!
So I just ran. No idea what my pace was. That didn’t bother me as much as not knowing if I were at mile 3 or 4 or where I was in the race.
The weather was perfect (except for the last few miles where you were running into the wind). I was a little over dressed. The sun made it feel much warmer than it was. I was sweating. I took off my gloves and unzipped my jacket but that was all I could do.
The course is very boring (zero scenery besides office buildings and highway) but it also has inclines. Nothing steep, just enough to keep it interesting. I wanted to be better about hills and not walk up them. And I didn’t for the first three miles but after that I did walk several times.
There were 1 water stop but I wasn’t sure if it were mile 3 or 4 and decided not to bother stopping or even take the GU that I was carrying.
This race proved that I do need my Garmin!!! I could tell that I was slowing down throughout the race by the runners that were passing me by. But I had no idea where I was in the race and what my pace was.
The good part was that I felt great during the whole race. No aches and pains. No blisters.
Eventually I did see the finish line and saw a time for the first time in the race. It said 59:xx. I sped up and managed to crossed around 59:58. (Phew! At least it was under 1 hour!!) There’s no timing chip. You honestly write down your time on a piece of paper and hand it in. (Without my Garmin, I’m not even sure if I got my time correct.)
I was 120 out of about 175. This is a fast group, as usual.
I chatted with others at the finish line while waiting for Judy to cross.
Then I went inside to warm up and have some soup (red pepper & quinoa), bread, cookies, fruit, hot chocolate. Not a bad spread for a free race. I didn’t eat as much as normal since I would be having brunch later.
They gave awards for the top 2 in each 10 year age group. I think that I was 5th this week.
I was happy with the results. Though it was almost 3 minutes slower than my PR, it was actually a PR for this course. Besides, I know that I would have been faster if I had my Garmin.
Race splits: NONE
As any runner would, I decided to add .8 miles so I could finish the day with 7 miles.
Then I rushed home to change out of my sweaty clothes. Judy had invited me and 6 other runners to her house for brunch. It was lovely. I am told that the food was even healthy. We chatted about running mostly, of course. I think everyone had a nice time.
Happy Running! How you are enduring the winter? Did you run this weekend?