Well this race report is a week late and so will be short. This was the first real race I have run since the Covered Bridges Half, in early June, which was a total mess. I had attempted to run a mile time trial, but balked. So here we are four full months later and it is finally time to put the racing shoes back on.
Over the summer I have slowly moved to zero drop and when race time came, it was time to strap the huaraches on for a go. I had tried them out on the track for an R-pace workout earlier in the week, and everything seemed good. Of course they drew some attention and a few folks remembered me from last year. I hate the shout outs, but at the same time, I am running in sandals.
This is one of those later races with a start time of 11:00. Always a bit confusing on the gut, but lately my diet and when I eat is so regularly erratic, it seems to be okay as long as I do not eat too close to race time. It also meant there was enough time early in the morning for my wife to want me to go for a run with her. So probably three hours before race time, I went for a five mile saunter with the stroller and wife. Nice for my mileage, and I also think it helped loosen things up a bit.
I managed to leave my watch at home, so I had no way of pacing by watch, it was all by feel, and I think it actually turned out to my advantage. I think if I had had a watch I would have freaked out over the pace being too fast or too slow. Instead I just kept building. Mentally, I was all there the whole time, no sleeping on the job this race. I picked up people as the race progressed and definitely made ground on the hills. The downhills were another question. I did okay with them, but the finish left me hard up. I just could not go any faster. Part of it was perhaps fear, but it is a pretty steep hill and the knee bend did not help. Maybe if I was smashing my heels.
In the end, I placed fifth and won my age group, taking home a nice twenty-four pack of some UFOs. And I set a PR by about seven seconds. Not a bad day out.