The race started at 11:00 so no need to be in a hurry. I picked Stacey up at 9:30.......she was open to a good kick in the butt.....and we headed out to Blue Lake to meet Kris and run for our lives. Last year when we got the bright idea to run a few short road races Stacey sprung a hamstring so we wanted to be good and warmed up. Warming up is only for fast folks (so we thought) and we never made it part of our pre-race routine but after Stacey's torn hamstring we learned our lesson. Kris was doing the 5K so she could get a good baseline for her M-Pace and T-Pace runs. We weren't having any fun warming up.....yeah right, we were laughing the whole time, pretending we were road runners. Kris inquired about our predicted finish times and I told her I would be pleased as punch to do 9 min. miles while Stacey gave me the standard...."Ronda.....come on". I had a couple of good excuses, first I was so sick this week and didn't run after Tuesday, not sleeping without a good shot of NyQuil, laying around coughing and blowing my nose was at least one good excuse. Also, the fastest I have run since mid July was about a 9 min. mile :). Kris had no idea how fast she could run because she has never run a 5K! So......all of this made us just laugh harder. We got a good 25 minutes of warming up then lined up.
Go! Stacey and I are off just getting in the groove but at the short quarter mile turn I see that I am 4th woman, oops too fast. Soon I am passed by a couple of girls and we hang together for about 3 miles. They keep looking back to see how close I am and it must be disturbing to see the girl carrying a water bottle and dressed like she's going to freeze to death right on their tail. At about mile 4 here comes Stacey flying by all three of us and ask her, "what are you doing"? She yells, "breathing hard"! I try to hang with her but can't. I look down at my watch as see that I am running 7:40's! Hmmmm, I think I might be able to hold this pace when just 24 hours ago I was rolling my eyes at the wind comment and now I find myself tucking behind people to avoid any wind related slowing. :) As a reward for working hard thus far I gave myself a GU.....a nice prize for running fast. So here I am at my first road run since January last year running faster at 9 miles than I ran 1 mile in July.....all very curious but it seems to be fine, only slight coughing from my cold.....things are looking good. What supposed to be good slaughtering turned into a really descent run and I am only a bit sore in the back end. I don't know where I finished but I think it was 6th girl and second in my age group scoring me a lovely red ribbon. Stacey finished 1st in her age group along with Kris who was 2nd overall girl and first in her age group so both of them got a very nice blue ribbon. My time was 1:12:47 which is 7:50 pace. The best part of the day was how much fun we had, belly laughs the whole time topped off with a great lunch at some organic only whole food place that Kris and Stacey took me to. Sorry, I can't remember the name. Stacey you can post the name in comments :).
Now that real training has started I am happy to not be so slow! I really was expecting 9's. November 3rd will be my 10K VDOT race where I will establish my starting M-Pace and T-Paces for the season. I am definitely coming into it a ton higher this year so that's good news and bad news. The good news is there is concrete improvement in my fitness, the bad news...all my paces are going to be faster.....ouch those track workouts are going to be killers! I can't wait!