It was colder this year at 16 degrees but there was hardly any wind so it didn’t feel colder. It was cloudy though where last year the sun was out. This year felt warmer and I was better prepared (clothing) for the race. A year of cold weather running has helped in this department. The start was different from last year. We started at the top of the oval in the park and ran down, around and out of the park. The first mile was mostly up that stupid hill. I really wanted to walk but thought to myself NO! So I pressed on. I past a lot of people on the uphill…all the people that sprinted down the hill at the start couldn’t run up the hill now. Since I was alone, I had to keep myself going. I’m impressed at how well I did. The first mile was rough as my hands were freezing. I didn’t wear gloves, I didn’t think about it. So the first mile my hands hurt so bad. But soon enough they were roasting and I was glad that I didn’t wear gloves (I didn’t have pockets to put them in so I would have been carrying them.) Even with the big up hill, my first mile pace was 11:11…not bad at all!
I don’t remember much about the middle. I know my hands were warm so that was good, I wasn’t getting over heated so my clothing choices were right. I past some people as they walked and then they past me as they ran faster but eventually I got ahead of them for good. I kept picking new people to pass and that kept me going. There was also a water stop in there somewhere. I stopped briefly to take a drink but remembered not to drink too much and kept on going. My pace for mile 2 was 11:21. I was a little concerned about it going down but then I remembered the hill…oh the glorious downhill. I loved the hill last year.
So the hill was awesome as always, my watch says I got up to 6:42 pace briefly but averaged around 8:45-9 down the hill…that helps the pace! Unlike Mankato’s hill which is long and not so steep, this one is just plan steep. I ran past so many people on the downhill. I don’t know if they were holding back but I let it go…maybe my excess weight with gravity made me go faster, I’m not sure. LOL! Of course what goes down must go up and there is a bit of an uphill afterwards. I was still passing people. We turn the corner and headed down to the park (down part of the uphill we ran at the beginning of the race). This year they were mean. The finished required us to go around the circle, uphill. Yes it was an uphill finish. I was surprised I still had enough in the tank to make the final push to the finish. I ran past many people on this uphill too. I came across the finish with a time of 33:36! It is incredible that I finished that well. The time was 3 seconds slower than Chocolate Frolic but that race was also shorter. My average pace was 10:55. Yes….that is another “10”!! This was my fastest pace ever…and it was a hilly course!
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