Sunday, September 27, 2009

XC Relay Report

Another weekend of hills seemed to be on the agenda for me. I headed to the Tornado's XC relay on Saturday after a day of setting up for another event later that evening. My formal attire was stashed in a friend's hotel room before I left because I knew there was no way I could make it home before the banquet started. The plan was to be the first runner and then get straight to my car afterwards and fly down the freeway in time to get there before the 6:30pm dinner. This race was much harder than I remember. The last time I ran this was year before last and I was in much better shape. This year I was happy to get through the race in one piece. Definitely not an easy time. Either way after the heat and hills and some short recovery it was back to Clear Lake for a nice dinner and good company. After the program my phone rang so I stepped outside and my friend Jackie told me we placed second overall. I was pretty surprised but I had a good team and they were able to really pick it up and smoke the course. I enjoyed meeting all the girls and I look forward to another good team next year! The rest of the night included some good beverages and dancing (as best I could on sore legs). All in all a really good end to the day.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Toughest 10K

I got a strange idea last week about entering a race. What better to do after several months of very little running but enter a race? Actually the slower more relaxed approach I have taken to my runs has been a good thing for me. I think I forgot how to enjoy just taking a nice jog with friends. Anyway I decided to run the Kemah bridge on Thursday morning with one of my favorite running friends. We survived (much to our surprise) and it put another idea in my mind. Maybe I should run the Toughest 10K on Saturday. I really had no idea if I could even finish. My long run has been only 6 miles and no hill training. I showed up at the boardwalk Saturday and decided to just run how I felt and walk if I needed to. I really enjoyed seeing all of the running friends I had missed over the last several months. A long lost family member even showed up (my second cousin). Very interesting. So we chat and catch up and then the race starts. I go out easy and just try to stay comfortable because I know the bridge is sitting there waiting and I have to make the climb 4 times. Ouch. I get through the first two climbs OK and I try to keep the fit people in view. The third time up I am starting to feel bad and I really want to walk but I keep chugging. Finally the last climb is behind me and I move forward to the painful finish. Thankfully my family is there to congratulate me on my finish. I hurry home and on the way I get a call that I left my age group award behind. I really did not even think I could place on such a tough course so I was happy. This was over 7 minutes slower that my 10K PR but I think my performance was better than I have ever done. Good times with friends and a workout that kicked my butt (in a good way)! All in all not too bad...