Sixth consecutive 5 mile race in Steilacoom on New Year's day. Rang in the new year while in the parking lot of SeaTac airport, just back from two weeks in warm and wonderful Maui. Home by 1AM and the 6:30 wake up was especially tough with two hours of jet lag. Easy day of race registration. Super cold out. 21 degrees and bright sun. I bundle up, even wearing my Pigtails beanie.
Start - Good two mile warm up with some striders a few minutes before the start. Awful cold on my face, the rest of me is covered. I hear an announcement that says we will start in five minutes so I amble over to the start area. Chat with Brett and Dawn, then I see Julie and Mike and go over to say hi to them. We are just greeting each other when all of a sudden, with no announcement, the race has started. I am not facing in the right direction and I am a little farther back than I should be, but I get moving and relax knowing that we will sort out soon enough.
Mile 0.8 - A slight change in the course. We will run behind the library instead of in front of it, not cutting the hypotenuse. This will add a small amount to the distance and I do not know why we are doing this but I better stay with everyone and not cut the corner. Soon we are back on the traditional course.
Mile 2 - I ran a 7:15 first mile, but now I am slowing. Tough to breathe this cold air, legs not entirely cooperating, but nothing hurts and I am enjoying the race.
Mile 2.25 - Gary Cooper sighting
Mile 2.5 - At the turn around. 18:56 The return trip will be more of a downhill, hopefully I can hold it together and maintain this pace. Anything under 37:52 will be a negative split.
Mile 3 - Back and forth with a woman. We keep switching leads or running together. Great competition.
Mile 3.5 - Mel Preedy sighting.
Mile 4.5 - Still battling with this woman. No one has passed us and we have not passed anyone. I think there is a smaller crowd here than most years. I have my negative split and feel very good about just maintaining this pace as the woman pulls ahead for good.
Mile 5 - On to the track and around to the finish. Decent way to start the year. So happy that I feel well with no nagging injuries despite an increased intensity of mid week training lately. I have family commitments and can not stay long after the race. A short cool down jog and then I leave, hoping to race again next week.
37:22 watch time
55th place of 125