A quick glance of coolrunning.com showed that there was the 51st Annual Fred Warren 5.5 Mile Road Race right by my house Sunday night. A race…by my house…in the evening…and a never-before-run-distance…perfect!
So getting there an hour early (duh) for the 6:30pm start found a pretty large group of people to run. Most of which were talking about how hilly the course was. Ya, I mean I know there are hills out here so I didn’t think anything of it…big mistake.
|My quads were screaming!|
As the race started I figured the best thing was to try and settle into a 7min pace for the first few miles to see how the race shook out. Hitting the one mile mark on 6:42, I heard the high school track kids running the race telling each other the pace was too fast and they needed to slow down for the “rest of the race”…uh oh…do they know something I don’t?! Well, nothing to do but keep going. And then the hills came…ooph. Mile 2 was on 7:33 and I figured out that the course would just be a series of short, steep hills to get over and try to gain speed on the backside…and then mile 3 came. The course turned cross country as we climbed to the 3 mile mark (on a 7:50), so I figured the guy yelling time splits was at the “top” of the hill as we were running up to him. Sweet baby Jesus was I wrong. As we climbed to the 3 mile mark…to turn right…to a MONSTER hill…that you couldn’t see the top of. This is a hilly course? Indeed! The hill was just as mentally crushing as it was physically. Some of the people that were in front of me at this point, were walking up the hill. Walking! Son of a monkey hammer that hill hurt to get over. How much? I turned in an 8:52 for mile 4! Mile 5 was just spent trying to catch my breath and get back into a decent rhythm and all I could manage was a 7:42. That last half mile was just gutting it out to the finish. I ended up with a finish time of 41:15 which landed me 34th overall and 7th in my AG. Not a great time but a new distance on a very hilly course in new schnazzy kit. I’ll take it. Now I need to get on the foam core roller and a nap!