March 20, 2011

Pacing - Just Do It!

Last weekend I ran a 23k trail race on a moderately technical singletrack in Kentucky - the Land Between the Lakes Trail Race. I ran as hard as I could since I was going for the win, which I missed by 15 minutes! Ack! I was 2nd overall - quite a gap between the two of us. I really didn't stand a chance. First place was a superstar!

Today I had another race! This one was a road half marathon - the Rock CF Rivers Half Marathon in Grosse Ile, MI. It was the inaugural running of this race, which raised money for cystic fibrosis research. The race was incredible, so well-organized with great volunteers, well-marked courses, ample, well-stocked aid stations and amazing post-race chow (Panera bagels!). You really would never know it was their first year!

Having raced last weekend, I knew it wasn't reasonable to expect I'd be at my best today. I really wanted to support Rock CF, so I was going to participate regardless, but I figured I'd just have to make it a training run. Well, I found an even better solution. I became a pacer!!

I knew my friend Jaime had a specific goal in mind for this race. I also knew her goal time would be pretty easy for me. Problem solved. Pace Jaime! Of course, I'd never done it before, so I knew it'd be a great mental exercise for me. It takes a lot of concentration to keep even splits, especially when the pace is pretty easy. I was proud of myself, but even more proud of Jaime. She struggled through the last few miles, but came in under her goal time. Our goal was to go sub 1:40 and we finished at 1:39:24. How bout that!?  :-)

It was immensely satisfying helping someone else achieve her goal. I think I even enjoyed it more than racing for myself! This pacing thing - highly recommended!

I even came in 2nd in my AG and got a nifty coffee mug as a prize. Ha! :-)

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red's 2011 race schedule