My sixth consecutive year doing one of these races. With a marathon planned for tomorrow I select the two mile race over the 8K. Jared has been running some and I encourage him to join me. Maybe I will hold back and run with him. Tacoma is my priority this weekend, but I do like this race. Lots of state agency folks get out of their cubicles for this one. I am not usually motivated by ribbons and trophies but they do have very nice awards here and with all the fast runners doing the 8K or resting for other races, I usually place pretty well. Jared and I arrive in plenty of time to register. It is drizzling so we go back and sit in the car till closer to start time. I am suffering with a head cold, but it feels a little better today. In the past I have run with "stuffiness" with little problem, but I wonder how it will affect my race today and tomorrow.
Start - Eventually we make our way down Capitol Blvd for the start line. We watch the 8K start and then line up for our race. Uphill a half a mile, then flat to the turn around. Downhill finish, turning left onto the road that takes us to the winged victory statue at the Capitol building. Here at the start there are a few kids eager to get going, toes to the start line. Also I see Brad Hooper who should win. Jared and I are right behind the front row, but there really is not anyone in front of me. I might as well toe the line and know that my watch time will be the same as my official time. Jared does not seem to care if I run with him or not, so I guess I will just do my own thing.
Mile 0.25 - Breathing a little hard. Uphill climb. I did not warm up much at all, saving precious miles for tomorrow. How fast should I be going? Gonna play this one by feel.
Mile 0.5 - Hill is leveling off. Passing the kids and a few others.
Mile 1.1 - Heading back now, looking for Jared. There he is, doing fine. We hand slap and I refocus on the task.
Mile 1.6 - Not going to catch the kid in front of me unless he fades big time. I do not need to be running as hard as I am. Slow down a little to protect my foot/stride on the downhill. Not going to go all out today but I am going much faster than planned.
Mile 1.8 - The sound of footsteps behind me. Someone trying to catch me. Since I had slowed some I feel the ability to speed up and decide to not let anyone pass. We have made the turn to the statue and I can see the finish line ahead. Pick up the pace and get the job done.
Mile 2 - Strong finish but no gasping for air or feeling like I am going to vomit. I head directly back to watch Jared make his final kicks. He comes in strong. We get some snacks and watch the slower two milers and faster 8K runners finish up. Cheer for some friends. Now it is raining a little harder so we go to the car to dry off before the award ceremony. We each take first in our age groups and get identical trophies.
7th of 49 1st in age group
6th YMCA/Public Agency Challenge race