Earlier this month I enlisted the help of a runner named Jimmy Dean to help me train for my second 100K race, the Miwok 100k. Before we could nail down a training plan, he needed to see where my fitness level currently was. And to be quite honest, I've been ready to get a better assessment also.
Here I go. 7:30 am, I'm at the start with my friends Eric and Kelly. It's my first race in California. And a very festive-themed one also, the 31st Annual Santa Monica-Venice Christmas 10K. The gun goes off and so I follow. My heart begins an anxious beat, followed by another and another. I quickly start checking my Garmin like a speedometer. The only three things on my mind from start to finish are how fast I am going, how hard am I breathing, how much energy do I have left. I'm hovering at a 6:45-7:15 / mile pace. Back and forth, faster and slower. I decide that I want to negative split (my second 5k to be faster than the first), and around mile 3 I realize I'm cooking about as hot as I can, and I better just go with the flow. My second decision is to pull away around mile 5. And so I push a little harder, but all I can do is stay steady, with maybe a few quick bursts. Speaking of bursts... now I decide, and this is typical of any race I do, that in the last quarter mile I'm going to sprint for the finish. Well, I really tried, but then I felt a quick heave come from deep inside. I keep it cool, coast, then hit the engines with about 50 feet to go.
Time: 43:39... a NEW PR (personal record) by over 2:37!
#10 in my age group! But, what aways gets me is when I look at other results and realize, that if I ran a 6:50 pace... I could have contended for 5th position. Well, I know I can do it. So, I'm going to. I'm going to run another 10K at a 6:50 pace.
Onward towards January 10th. That's the day I find out if I made it into the Miwok 100K. My destiny.