Monday, July 28, 2014

Waunafest 10 Miler 2014 Race Report

On Friday I went out for one of those "longish runs".  I was targeting anywhere between six to fifteen miles.  Wanted to see how I felt.  I felt slow and sluggish and actually got passed by two runners on my route - including one lady speeding past with a jogging stroller.  Ugh.  I just wasn't feeling it.  After each mile clocked in at around 10:30 I decided to head back home and finish with ten miles.  The clouds were dark and the rain started at mile 9 and I was blessed with some light sprinkles during my final 10:30 mins.  I finished the ten miles in 1:45 - which is tragically slow for me.  The watch reflected even slower times than I was feeling out there. 
Oh well, a run is a run and it's done and I didn't regret it.  I had a ten mile race on tap for Saturday.  I was glad I didn't run more on Friday and totally trash my legs - and my mental game.   I wasn't sure what to expect for Saturday's race and really went into the event with no expectations.  This would be my sixth or seventh time competing in the Waunafest 10 miler (HERE)  and I have crossed that finish line anywhere from 1:25 - 1:35 in years past.  Who knew where I would end up this time.  Hopefully just with a smile on my face.
Hubby and I grabbed our packets on Friday afternoon, as we were heading through the only Waunakee in the World on our way to a tour at Wollersheim Winery in Prairie du Sac.  We set the alarm for 6:15 on Saturday morning, so that we could squeak into the start line at 7:30 am.  I love close, small town races!  I ate some Honey Nut Cheerios, greek yogurt and downed an energy shot.
We parked nearby and used the restroom at the park, since we didn't have to go inside for our packets.  I had my handheld water bottle, filled with water and stashed a mint chocolate Gu inside to consume during the race.
With the shot of the cannon we were off on our ten mile route.  The route was pretty similar to year's past, but was altered a bit as well.  The first couple of miles would meander through an industrial park and then head out into a really nice, new neighborhood, a second neighborhood and then out past Waunakee high school.  The route had been a little different every year I ran it, but was always spotted with a lot of hills.  I loved the course this year - probably my favorite of all of the year's I've ran this event.
At mile two, I spotted a gentleman that I have seen at almost every small local race I've ran in.  We always end up running together at some point and he passes me and finishes ahead of me.  I lowered my music and told him that I recognized him from so many events.  We chatted awhile.  Turns out his name is Sam and his daughter's name is Jamie.  I was glad I finally introduced myself and hope to see him at another event.  I never saw him again after mile 2.  I also lost site of Hubby at mile .1!
My watch was clocking in much faster than my ten miler the day prior.  8:50-9:15.  I was ecstatic and feeling great.  The hills pushed me and I got stronger with each one.  I enjoyed all of the hometown race support and the small groups cheering along the entire course.  There were a ton of water stations, but I was disappointed when I asked at each one if there was sports drink and the reply was always no.  I downed my entire bottle of water over ten miles and never grabbed a cup of water.  I could have used a boost from sports drink at some point (or two).  I sipped on my energy gel around mile five and that gave me a good boost.
I saw hubby at the turnaround loop, around midway through the course.  He said he could tell I had some bounce in my step.  I turned on the my strongest running songs on my workout playlist and repeated a few of them.  I could feel my pace increasing.  I played Katy Perry's "Roar" and Mumford and Sons' "Roll Away Your Stone" a few times.  It kept me going.
With two miles left to go, I could see a familiar face up ahead.  Kristin and I always run a similar pace and end up finishing marathons together.  Coincidentally, I was approaching her again.  I ended up passing her and game her a thumb's up as I continued to gain some speed with "Roar".  I looked at my watch and thought I may just have an outside of shot of finishing under 1:31 or 1:30.  Holy buckets!  I started counting backwards in my head, tried to "focus on my breathing; not on my legs" and charged ahead.  I knew that extra push was in me for the finish line.  We headed down around the track and around the baseball diamond to the finish line.  I passed everyone down the hill and around the track.  I had my tunes CRANKED, but could hear strangers cheering as I pushed it into the finish and I could hear Hubby say "Good job, Babe!" near the finish line.  I plowed past the finish - and further.  And I looked down at my watch and it read 1:30:04 - just a smidge over 90 mins.  Not to shabby. 
It's amazing how this run built my confidence back up.  The run the day prior kind of broke it down, but it took just one strong finish to build it back up.  20 miles in two days, with minimal training.  I was happy.
The sweat from my brow started pouring into my eyes.  As I was reminiscing with other runners and family, I suddenly couldn't see.  I hate when this happens.  It's miserable and doesn't go away.  With my diva-like makeup on for race day, I had to be careful and headed to the restroom to douse my face with cold water.  The lack of papertowels forced me to be patient.
We then watched the dozens and dozens of awesome little kids run in the kids race events, went out for a comical breakfast and some bloody Mary's and headed home for a shower and a nice afternoon nap. 

187/ 322 overall
10/21 age group
66/158 gender

Ten Miles:  1:30:04
Pace:  9:01 min/mile

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