As Purse mentioned in her last post, I ran the Santa Cruz 10k last weekend and am happy to report that I broke my PR (set 2 years ago..last time I ran a bloody open 10k) by around 3.5 minutes to finish in 36:46 and place second overall and first female!!! This was huge for me because it is nice to see some progress in my running with all the painful zone 4 runs Paulo gives me!
I love racing in Santa Cruz and always seem to do well there, perhaps because the chill people there balance out my “high-strungness” or something. Matt decided to come along and be my sherpa (read: scream at me at every mile marker) for the race. At the start of this race I told myself that I just wanted to run even splits and not blow up and die. I have a history of going out too fast and then melting into a pool of death by the end of any race. Matt has plenty of video evidence to back this up. The gun sounded and I took off at a pace that I thought was relatively manageable. I was in about seventh place after a few minutes and then after running up a long, steep hill, I found myself in second place. This was unimaginable for me. I felt strong and smooth…something that I’ve never felt before! SECOND PLACE?!
I continued on and came across Matt (who had ridden ahead) at mile markers. (And no, he does not do this in triathlons and was not riding with me because that is illegal and annoying.). He looked surprised and screamed out that I was “killing it.” He was also cheering on the competition behind me, probably just to make me angry and go faster or something. His surprise and animation grew with every mile marker and by mile 5 the guy was almost peeing in his pants with enthusiasm. Apparently somebody was creeping up on me, because with half a mile to go I heard him scream that I better pick up the pace or was going to get third. At this point I was in some other world of hurt. One of my goals for this race was to just let it hurt, because I don’t think I push myself to hurt enough in triathlon running. As per tradition (I loudly told him to STFU at Kona on mile 25.5 of the race in front of my parents), I told him to shut up, which he interpreted as I must still have something in me. I passed him, ran onto some long sand section and finally crossed the finish line..excited for a new PR! (note to race directors: sand is evil and totally unnecessary. One can evoke the “beach” feeling simply by including a couple of inflatable palm trees and fruity beverages at the finish line.)
Purse, being the competitive person that she is, decided that she would have nothing to do with me breaking her 10k PR, so she promptly signed up for a 10k this weekend in DC. Let the BICOASTAL sloot battle of the 10ks begin! If she does break my PR, I’ll be forced to sign up for another 10k and take along my secret weapon – the screaming sherpa! She is taking applications for her own personal screaming sherpa.