This was the big weekend. My first attempt at the 10K distance. I ran in theCircle of Friends New York Mini 10k with about 3500 of my close friends. Me and Lornah Kiplagat...tight.
The race is actually a blur to me. I remember snapshots. The start, when we were massed on Central Park West in the cool blustery morning. Thousands of women listening to speakers and wishing they'd be done with it, already, so we could move.
The first mile up CPW was my slowest. I was cold and needed time to warm up and I was also gazing around. I mean, how often do you get to run up the center of a major avenue in Manhattan without having a cadre of police officers chasing you?
I remember turning into the park at 90th Street. There was a group of Reservoir Dogs, I believe, cheering for us. Thanks, Dogs!
Once we were in the Park I was feeling pretty good. I didn't feel like I was going too fast. My split for mile two was 18:42. Very comfortable.
Mile three had a good bit of downhill, so I picked it up and did it in 8:31. Wow! My 5k split, according to NYRR, was 29:30. Pretty good and still feeling fine.
Mile 4 was 8:45. I was getting fairly even mile splits. This was going great.
I think I saw the Dogs again, with their pompoms somewhere in there. And there were plenty of guys in the park, cheering on the field from the outside lane.
I stayed pretty fast for mile 5 - 8:29. I remember thinking when I saw the 5 mile marker that I was now entering unknown territory.
Mile 6 was my fastest - 8:23. There were markers up from 800 meters out telling us how far we had to go. After many weeks of track workouts, I'm now familiar with just how long 800 meters is and I was sure I could pull out a 4 minute or better time for that distance. I was feeling amazingly fresh, so I started to speed up into my interval training pace. 400 meters out and I'm still going strong. At about 200 meters I could see the finish line and I think I got a bit dizzy with speed. I poured on even more and just starting whooping and hollering as I got down the chute. Unfortunately, most of the women in front of me decided to slow down as they approached the end. I was forced to weave to avoid running people over. I probably looked like the biggest goof, but I got my first 10k in 55:29! How fantastic is that?!
Chelly ran this race, too. A few months back when I told her I was planning a 10K in June she said she might come and cheer me on. This turned into her coming to the park for a long run and meeting me at the finish line. Next thing you know, she signed up to participate. We discussed what our goals for the race were. My gold medal ideal was to beat 55 minutes. I just missed it. Chelly had her gold medal as a 1:15 finish. Well she didn't miss it by much and finished in 1:16.52. I think the medals we got for finishing were a big incentive. Congrats Chel!