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 am in throes of half marathon training so instead of racing the 10k (as I usually do), I ran long the day before and chose the 3 mile race distance instead.
Last year, this race was not held (due to the re-scheduled Jan 1 race) but I ran this race in 2017, 2015 & 2013.
Choosing the shorter distance this year gives me the opportunity to compare my time to other Winter Series races of this distance. The 3 Mile course is offered frequently. (3 out the 5 races.)
But as you know, even running the same distance on the same course is not the same – different weather conditions and feeling different physically.
So running 10 miles the day before this race would most likely impact how fast my legs were wiling to go. And having a half marathon in four weeks also would make me hesitate to go all out for fear of injury.
That being said, my goal was a decent recovery run with running friends and no aches and pains afterward.
Then unexpectedly (even though he was very old), my cat died the night before. I was very very upset and really didn’t feel like racing but I knew it could only make me feel better.
I got lucky with the weather for the second day in a row. It was COLD (teens but single digits with the wind chill) but sunny. As usual on this campus, it was windier than anywhere else..
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. Maybe the freezing temperature scared people away.
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 wound up talking to Judy and Karen and we stayed indoors until the last minute and then made our way outside. However they were running the 10K and they lined up in a different location.
Sole Sister Heidi arrived and we started the 3 miler together.
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.
It was so cold that it was also hard to breathe…at least for the first few miles (and then of course, it was over.)
I looked down at my Garmin and it said LOW BATTERY. In the stress of my cat’s death, I forgot to charge it.
I don’t care about pace but since the miles aren’t marked, I sometimes like to see where I am in the race.
Then I looked down and my shoe was untied. UGH! I thought of stopping but it was too cold and a pain to have to take my gloves off so I just ran gingerly making sure not to trip and fall.
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 walk at all.
Runners kept speeding by me…but they were actually those running the 25k!!!
I saw Alyssa ahead of me the whole race. I was surprised since I had thought that she was running the 10k. She acted like my pacer.
Eventually I did see the finish line and saw a time for the first time in the race. It said 27:xx. I sped up and managed to crossed around 27:24. There’s no timing chip. You honestly write down your time on a piece of paper and hand it in.
I was 30 out of 80. This is a fast group, as usual.
I chatted with others at the finish line while waiting for Heidi to cross.
If it were warmer, I would have waited to cheer on Karen and Judy. But I was cold so Heidi and I went inside to warm up and have some chili (red pepper & quinoa), bread, cookies, fruit, hot chocolate. Not a bad spread for a free race.
They gave awards for the top 2 in each 10 year age group. I was 3rd this week.
mile 1 – 9:17 (crawling – 8:50 last time)
mile 1.8 – 9:18 (still a crawl)
mile 1.8-3 – ??? – (must have sped up)
WS Series #1 – 28:08
2017-18 WS Series – 26:49, 27:02
So it wasn’t a 3 mile PR or course PR (but not a PW either).
I was happy with the results and that I decided to run this race.
I get one more try at this distance in two weeks!!
Since today is Tuesday, I’m also linking up with these ladies.
Happy Running! How you are enduring the winter? Did you run this weekend?