The Race: 1 crown down, 2 crowns to go
I went into the Garden 10-Miler this morning with only one expectation: to run like it was any other Sunday morning long run. It paid off. I ran 1:40:00, exactly 10:00 miles. While my uncharacteristically relaxed mindset did not transform me into a crazy speed demon over night, it did allow me to run one of my most consistent races ever.
As I've said before, I'm a distance girl, there's not a speedy muscle in this body. That said, I spent miles 1 and 2 settling into the course. Miles 3 and 4 started to feel familiar and more comfortable, despite a burning left IT band. Between miles 4 and 8 I was in runner-girl-paradise. Even with the IT discomfort, the miles seemed to fly by. At about mile 9 I was ready to be done; that's where you're leaving the park (and scenery) and heading into the final mile which always feels ridiculously long to me, even in shorter races the last mile feels like it drags on into eternity.
I finished feeling good, nothing really hurt even after 10 miles of pavement. I am also confident that after more time on hills and at altitude I'll be able to slash some digits off my time. For now, however, I am perfectly satisfied with today's race.
After the race I did what any sane and loving dog owner would do: took my darling for a 5 mile hike at the Crags. This hike was complete with funnel clouds, thunder, and hail.
Then, because the only time I can really sit still and enjoy a movie is after racing, I went to see the Fault in Our Stars with my friend/running buddy/boss. This was a great idea because it allowed me to cry out all the water I had consumed while simultaneously providing an opportunity for me to reach a level of emotional exhaustion on par with my post-race-and-hike physical exhaustion. Aside: seriously, it was a great movie - such a good portrayal of the book :-) If you do not spend much of it crying, you likely do not have a heart and therefore cannot run for lack of circulation.
Sitting still turned my hip flexers into cement, so the next step was to take a really hot epsom salt bath followed by a cold shower...weird, yes, but oddly satisfying. The logical next step was alcohol, known in the Purple and Gold Nation as "the recovery drink of champions."
Now, I'm off to torture myself with my beloved foam roller.
To all of you who killed those hills this morning: WAY TO GO!