Wanna know how to make an ultrarunner sore? Make them run a mile!
Wednesday night was the annual Westminster Main Street Mile. A downhill mile, to be exact. My running group did this event for the first year last year and after PR’s all around were set, we vowed to come back. This year’s weather wasn’t quite as favorable – chilly and rainy – but downhill is downhill so it would still be quick! Last year I ran a 5:36 here, and was the 6th female. It was literally my first “fast” race, and knowing that I have put in some speed work this year, I was hoping to better that time. But, a mile race doesn’t quite fit into Ironman training too well, so I’d be racing on tired legs after another speed workout completed that morning. Thanks Coach! 🙂
After thawing my toes with a quick warm-up, then jogging the mile up to the start, I lined up with 25+ other Falls Road Runners. Yes, we rolled deep. It was awesome. The bullhorn sounded and we were off! Well, one guy was more down, than off. He was the only casualty of the wet roads I saw as I hurdled over him. The first quarter has the steepest part of the hill, hence my 70 second split. I began to slow up as the road levels and rises a bit through the ¾ mark. My arms went numb, my lungs began to explode, and I wondered for what seemed like forever why people actually enjoy this feeling. The timing mats were finally in view, and I was out-kicked by a 13 year old boy as I crossed the line: 5:15:59. A whopping 21 seconds faster than last year (but still 6th place!). I know I can’t expect that sort of improvement every year, but it definitely felt pretty good. Maybe one day I’ll even learn how to run it and not positive split by 15 seconds?
The best part of the night was still to come – the ice cream sandwiches! Chilly night or not, I was getting my reward for that run. The group then headed over to the local Irish pub where I ordered vegetables instead of fries with my chicken sandwich. See….I’m learning!
Note in the picture below: 13 year old who beat me, PJ – who inspired me to stick with him and run faster than I thought I would, and sneaky tall Ed who runs so fast he has 75 seconds to finish and come back and cheer us in!