On Saturday, I ran in Maine's premier road race, the Beach to Beacon 10K. I woke up early to meet my running buddies and make the trek down to Cape Elizabeth.
|So early, but beautiful.|
It was overcast with temps in the 60s. Such a welcome change from the oppressive heat and humidity of the last two years I ran this race.
We hopped on a bus that shuttled us to the start. This was much nicer than where we got dropped off last year when we had to walk approximately a mile to get to the starting area. We got there in plenty of time to use the port-o-potties twice.
|Ready to run!|
I eventually made my way to line up halfway between the 8- and 9-minute per mile signs and ended up standing right next to Superman.
Soon we started moving forward and two minutes after the gun, I crossed the start line and was off. I mentioned in my last post that I wasn't planning on racing all out and wanted to enjoy the race. And that is what I did. I ran comfortably hard at around 80-85% effort. By the time I got through mile two, I felt like I could sustain this pace forever. I was pleasantly surprised that miles one and two were both 8:22. There were water stops at each mile and didn't stop until mile three. I was starting to get hot and wanted to make sure I got through the hills in the last couple of miles.
Mile three - 8:16
The crowd support was fantastic. People lined the roadsides for a majority of the course and I was able to smile and enjoy the scenery, something I didn't do the two years prior.
There was a little drizzle coming down and I felt strong. My legs were feeling a little fatigued, but I was able to push through the discomfort and kept plugging along.
Mile four - 8:25
The fifth mile is when the hills start and I felt so good. This is where I had to do a death march last year and my only walking race picture was taken. But not this year! The hills didn't feel as big or long. I powered right up them, passing people left and right.
|White shirt, pink skirt and shoes on left|
|Previous three photos courtesy Maine Running Photos|
Mile five - 8:17
My average pace was right around 8:20 and I knew at this point that I had a course PR in the bag! So excited!
I arrived at Fort Williams before I knew it. I could not believe how quickly the race flew by.
Mile six - 8:32
I kicked it into high gear for the last .2 with my pace dropping down into the mid-6s! I crossed the line, said hello to Joan Benoit Samuelson who was congratulating runners at the finish, and reveled in the glory of a 2-minute course PR.
Could I have gone faster? I'm sure of it. But I'm loving even more that I was enjoying every moment of this race and PR'd the course without even trying. This just further confirms how having a go with the flow and stress-free outlook positively affects my performance. (And cooler weather.) I wasn't nervous at all, I was out there to have fun. So that's what I did.
Final stats: 52:07, 8:24 pace, 2169 out of 6247 overall, 666 out of 3135 females, 112 out of 495 in AG (35-39)