Queens Half, RR: HOT HOT HOT

How do you manage to have a good race and an kick at the end in a half marathon in 90 degrees (feels like of 94)??

Don’t know? Well, I would say having a good memory (or a blog!!!) made the difference this time. I’ll tell you how.
I had been dreading this race all week because of the weather. I even figured I could “oversleep“. But that would leave JohannaTS waiting in the corner at 5 am. Then I thought maybe I could “pretend” to run it and tell everybody my chip didn’t work… Ah, OK, I set these goals myself, can’t lie to myself, I AM running. GRRR.
Against my will, I met Johanna at 5 am and the train was really crowded with runners, which I always think is strange and cool. I found Blaise in our corral and we both knew we wouldn’t try to go out “fast”. I was determined to NOT race, it’d be an easy pace for me thankyouverymuch. If I wasn’t going to PR, then why suffer the whole way? If I go slow enough, this could be ok. And I figured this would be our “summer moonsoon”. We did a 16 mile run in February in the middle of a monsoon, crazy winds, downpour, cold, and ITBS (I like it rough post), but after that day, every run I did with the ITBS was cake. This could be our new “hot summer” standard!!!!!
So we set off together, mile 1 was 8:04. He thought that wasn’t bad as he had wanted to stay in the low 8s, but I knew then that there was no way I could hold that pace for the rest of the race. So, he went, and I slowed down. The course had a few outs-and-backs and I got to see a lot of my friends out there (even fellow loopster BattleSoul), which always keeps me entertained. Of course I shouted at every one I recognized, but I got passed a lot. Like, a LOT. Then I had a thought: they were not passing meI was letting them go. I was just trying to enjoy the race and I needed to slow down even a bit more, my heart rate monitor said so. By mile 3, there were already people walking or collapsing left and right. Then a genius thought popped in my head: if I had been able to run easy and relaxed in Boston, how would I not be able to do it here, when the weather is horrible and I have nothing to lose??
Just like that, my body gave in and relaxed. I found my rhythm and I was fine. I was stopping for water and Gatorade in every single mile and taking my old sweet time, thanking the volunteers and cheering on the runners. I didn’t have to walk once, which is usually my problem in hot races. And between the water cups I was pouring on myself and the sprinklers… I had never run so drenched in my life! This wasn’t so bad. I felt like the Queen of the world for conquering my body and being able to pace myself smartly.
Then Blaise appears from behind, seems like I had passed it at some point, but he was struggling and couldn’t stay with me. I finished really strong, way under 8 mm for the last two miles, which made me really really happy. I got to pass a couple of women I had run with for most of the race to finish 7th in my age group. Finish time was 1:49:30, five minutes slower than my PR (but most people were at least 10 or 15 minutes off their PRs); and an average pace of 8:22, which is closer to marathon pace. But today, I took it all as a major WIN.
I jogged around a bit after the race, I still had tons of energy. Not a surprise, I had a huge bowl of pasta and a full jar of dulce de leche for dinner. Nutella, you’ve met your match!!!!
The Old Spice moment you know was coming: I always find that all those things I dread the most end up surprising me, in a really good way. I am very happy I showed up to this challenge today. And I am very proud that I was able to hold back and pace myself  in a smart way. I think that’s my biggest accomplishment in my running this year. I am, obviously, on a horse!
Horse needs some water and rest today. We’re off to the trails upstate tomorrow for a few hours of running. Need to speed-recover: ice-bath, refueling, and major napping. Ah, the post-race high!

blog post photo

Johanna and I after the race
———————-
Not so dear 2010 Summer,

What happened to you? I loved you; you used to mean fun, pools, tiny dresses, sun, rooftops, sandals, beaches, vacation, funny tan lines, coconut smelling lotions, and friends…
 
And now, you turn into this?? Why treat us so badly? What have we done to you? I am not sure what you’re after, but I can tell you right now YOU ARE NOT GONNA WIN.
Just like I screamed my face off to my ITBS a few months ago, I will not let you step all over us now. It’s not gonna happen. You might slow us down, make us cut some runs short, get us dehydrated, but we’re not backing off. We’re united and ready for the battle. IT IS ON. This is your two weeks notice.
 
Remember this past weekend? Huh? Yeah? You hit us with “some heat“.
You made me feel like I was running Badwater. Yes, I dreaded the pikermi all week, during the first miles I wanted to poke my eyes out and you slowed me down me a lot, but you didn’t kill my spiritAnd you know what? I had a wonderful race, thankyouverymuch! It was not about the results. Because, YOU KNOW, it is NEVER about the finish time. I conquered my pace and my willingness to turn a bad situation into an opportunity to celebrate what running has brought into my life. Thank you for this lesson.
 
Because of you, yes, thanks to you, I’ve been feeling like the Queen of Queens. And I have proof. In case you think I am bluffing just to scare you off. Check this out.

There is proof in the form of video. That’s me clubbing you on minute 3:55, my end of the race. Pretty ridiculous how badly you lost this fight if you ask me.
 
Yes, it was hard. I have pictures where you can see in my face and my form how badly you were making me feel (and you can also see a famous Queens landmark in the back, you have seen it in Men in Black).

blog post photo

blog post photo

But what doesn’t kill us only makes us stronger (and faster come fall), right? Look how strong I looked later…

blog post photo

blog post photo

The more you tortured me, the stronger I felt:

blog post photo

I am mentally done with you. SO over you, but thank you for putting up a good fight and challenging me. I appreciate the lessons I learned, but I see you shaking now.. HUH?

blog post photo

See? I WIN. You should know better and back off now, before it’s too late.
You can slow us but you can’t stop us. We love this too much to be brought down.
Advertisements

One thought on “Queens Half, RR: HOT HOT HOT

  1. Pingback: 2017 Queens 10K Race Report | runningandthecity

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s