Sunday, June 8, 2014

crack of dawn, part 3

Well, I did it again.  Because I'm crazy and/or a bit of a masochist, I signed up for the Crack of Dawn 8k road race, which careened down the Millcreek Canyon road starting at 6:30 a.m.  This is the third time I've done this race (first time here, second time here).  The first two times had 6 a.m. starts so I was grateful for the extra half hour.  I assume they pushed the start back for visibility/safety reasons: cars heading up Millcreek Canyon early have the sun right in their faces and certainly wouldn't be expecting hundreds of runners staggering downhill right at them.

V for victory at the finish on Wasatch Boulevard

H dropped me at the start - the seasonal gate closure - around 6:15 a.m. It was a very nice temperature for running, cool but not cold (although my hands got cold) and we didn't get to the sunshine until we were almost out of the canyon.  I picked out a couple of like-paced people to follow and headed down canyon.  I actually felt really good on this run, even though I had only done the full 8k distance once in my training.  Knowing how hard the all-downhill had been on my quads in the past - as in, not being able to go downstairs later that day - I tried a new technique on the steeper sections: taking really small but quicker steps.  The main downhill portion seemed to pass pretty quickly (I was pointedly not looking at my watch) and it was only the final, slight uphill finish that was difficult.  H met me at the finish; I got a piece of chocolate and some water; we watched the rest of the racers finish before departing for my prize: breakfast at Ruth's (omg that bacon was delicious).

This is why I run the dang race: breakfast!

I like this race a lot.  It's low key, it's easy on the lungs, it gets me five miles under my belt before breakfast.  But it does effectually ruin me for the rest of the day.  My quads were much less sore this time than previous runnings, no doubt due to my new technique, but I still had to take a 1.5 hour midday nap and when we just hung around the house for the remainder of the day (H was having some work stuff come crashing into our weekend), I wasn't too upset about it.  Still, I struggle with this every year when it comes time to sign up: it's fun and I like it, but I'm not entirely sure it's worth sacrificing that much of my precious weekend time.  But I don't really have to worry about that for nearly another year now, do I?

Race stats:  40:53.07 race time (down from prior best of 41:09.75); placed 65th out of 174 overall; placed 5th out of 23 in my age group/

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