The 33rd annual Green Valley Road Race has 8k and 10 mile events - I was doing the 10 miler for the 3rd time (2007, 2009) having set my PR here last year with a 1:18:08. I was hoping to run 8 min/mi giving me a 1:20, but I really wasn't sure I'd be able to run that fast. Treadmill workouts always seem harder than outdoor running for me, and last week's runs weren't terribly easy.
The 8:45am start was a little crowded, but ran off the left side to get around some people before settling into my rhythm. Tucked in beside Jim, a fellow GTC-er and Charlotte Marathon finisher, right ahead of me), so I knew we'd have a similar pace/goal. Also saw my first rabbit from 8 yrs ago (She had her music going and she probably wouldn't remember me anyway) right there, so I'd have people to chase. Started off right on pace with a 7:50 and felt fine. Came upon another runner (TD) I see in many races, but she was fighting a sinus thing, so we didn't run together long. That was my slowest mile (8:14) and I'd new I'd have to push to keep the 8's possible. Jim got about 25 seconds ahead of me and stayed there for a bit before I sloooowly reeled him in over the course of 5 miles. Back to running by myself, occasionally passing people. In fact - I don't think anyone passed me after the first 0.25 miles. Hit some climbs and went thru the third mile in 8:05, then ran a 7:41 to get back on my goal pace. (4 miles in 31:52). Kept thinking this race really didn't seem too far and the miles kept coming pretty quick - in my head at least. Got the to heart of the hills and ran consistently 8:04, 8:00 and 7:51 as I passed a few more people and caught and passed Jim around mile 6. So thru 7 in 55:49 - still right on pace. I had started thinking in the back of my mind that a PR was possible, but I didn't know exactly what time I had to beat (1:18 something...). If I pushed hard...I could break 1:19 and then it would be close. Picked off 3-4 others from miles 7 to 9 running 7:45 and 7:48. Was mostly a gentle downhill thru here, some on the Swamp Rabbit trail, but I knew there was a small rise in the last 1/2 mile that I never enjoy. Still saw some people I wanted to catch 50 yards ahead, so kept at it, as I kept thinking I was hearing footsteps behind me to push me even harder. I also knew my wife and daughter would see me finish, so I wanted to have a strong finish too. We got onto the mall at Furman and I passed 2 or 3 more as I was intent on one more guy ahead of me. Passed him with 30 yards to spare and finished with a time of 1:18:32! I was very happy with that (even after finding out I missed a PR by 25 secs or so). I really enjoy the course and the distance - not exhausted afterwards but feel like it's still a good challenge. Any run can be a challenge, but still!
Team DNR All Stars (our relay team for the Palmetto 200) had a good showing, Terry and Dave finishing around 1:16, Kerrie ran well I'm sure although results won't be up until tomorrow, and Kathrin snuck by in 1:36. Christina, Ken and our team leader Chris all ran the 8k too.
Other noteworthy events:
Reedy River 10k in 2 weeks...not sure I can do 7:25's to PR there...
and I finally registered for the Chattooga 50k on June 6th!