It’s been a
week month, and I’m still on a high from this race. We didn’t make it to the top and it rained the whole way. It was bloody hard work and I was soaked to the bone. I didn’t care, I had a blast and in many ways it was my best race to date. Definitely one of the most enjoyable.
All the usual suspects for a race were lined up – I had done the training, I had a rough plan in place, I was organised for pre and post race and not even the rain was going to dampen my spirits for this one.
I had initially thought of this race as a one-off, a ‘conquer the mountain’ and be done with it. Well that went out the window with the crazy weather conditions and I just have to come back next year to give it another shot. Which in itself is not a bad thing.
I was disappointed that we were told the course was altered but along with every other race I’ve done it gave me a chance to learn something. With this one… I found out just how steep an incline the mountain really is. It is hard work. I know where I need to improve my hill workouts for the future. I know how much I need to dig deep and push through the pain. I know that this time next year I will conquer the mountain!
Why would all of this make it my best race of the year? Because I switched off all notions of a PB, of timing and pace, and just did it. As usual my photos don’t show it, but I enjoyed every minute of it, up and back. I just ran. It was really getting back to running. I had my volume down on the phone so wasn’t hearing anything.
As it turns out I did make a PB and was slightly (10mins) ahead of my halfway time plan. When I heard the time as I approached the turn around I knew then that I could have made it to the top. The way back down the hill was certainly a lot easier. I didn’t push for speed, I just moved along, knowing I would finish easily within the time frame. I could have gone harder, I was enjoying it as it was.
As I said it rained all the way up and back, and it wasn’t until I replaced my beanie after towelling my hair that I realised how cold I was, and my head. I took off and found a shopping centre with event public toilets – you don’t think how small the cubicles are til you want to get changed, and dry off at the same time. To say it was awkward is an understatement, especially as everything was tight and sticking to me. I spent the rest of the afternoon in 3 layers done up past my chin, compression sleeves and a beanie. The cold was that bad.
I am so proud of what I have achieved this year, this was my best race for many reasons. Bring on next year – 2 marathons, numerous 10ks and I’ll have to find at least one half in there somewhere.
Keep running, be fit and have a great new year.