I’ve taken a bit of a break from racing this year. Since I began running in 2009, I’ve used training for events as a way to motivate myself to keep at it. My race tally stands at 22 half marathons (13.1 miles) and 4 marathons (26.2 miles).
I’ve lost count of the 5K, 10K, 15K/10 milers, as well as other fun-run activities. During “the year of the half,” I ran 6 half marathons (one every other month.)
So this year’s 2 races – a 10K in March and a 5kish this past weekend – is a big change of pace for me. I decided to take the winter off, run for the enjoyment of it, and put a little distance between me and racing.
The On Cosby Moonshine Run (billed as a 3.2 miler, rather than the standard 3.1 of a 5K) has always been one of my favorite races. The course is mostly flat, running alongside a creek. Held in mid-October, the weather is crisp, but not cold, and most certainly a welcome relief from the summer’s heat and humidity.
The race is a small one, this year officially only having 21 racers. This is down from previous years, but I’ve always enjoyed the small-town feel of the race. Also, the low numbers help out tremendously for placing in my age group.
Due to my standard-issue fall cold, I wasn’t able to attack training like I wanted. Instead of a straight run, I decided to use the intervals of 3 minutes of running and 1 minute of walking that had worked for me so well at the 10K earlier this year.
Instead of being pleasantly surprised at my time, like in March, for this race I was disappointed. My overall pace seemed like one I could have maintained with a straight run, but being away from training and racing for almost a year was sure to slow me down.
While I didn’t meet my time goal, I did meet my age group place goal. Given the small nature of the race, I knew this would be my shot to win first place in my age group if ever I had one.
After the top 3 over ladies were taking out of the a/g categories, I won the 30-39 division. (Before you ask, I wasn’t 1 of 1.)
Most importantly, however, the experience reminded me just how much I love racing. As a matter of fact, I’ve already got my eye on another race in January!