All of this strength training and boot camp-ing has been great for my strength and foot speed. Sub-90-second quarters ain’t no thing, and on Monday I did 30 (!) consecutive push-ups.
However, it has brutally murdered my endurance.
Okay, I know. I’m sure it’s the lack of mileage that’s the real culprit. But that’s not what I was thinking at mile four of yesterday’s Peachtree Road Race 10K when I was whining dramatically to myself about how this race was soooooo looooooong and if I’m in such good shape why am I toooooootally dying right now?
Damn that SAID principle.
I mean, I kind of expected to run a shitty time yesterday. But I didn’t expect it to hurt so much.
The morning started off uneventfully. Balance Bar, Gatorade, comically packed MARTA train car. Had a solid 45 minutes to kill before the 7:30 AM start, so I did a 15-minute warm-up and hit the plastic potties (for which there were shockingly no lines!) about six times.
In my start corral, I ended up chatting with a couple of guys and totally neglected to start my Garmin before we took off. Whoops. So I guess I’m running this one by feel, I thought.
The crowds weren’t too bad and there was plenty of excellent people watching, so I cruised along at what I imagined to be mid-7 pace.
Somewhere in the first couple of miles, a familiar face strode up! I don’t know how Ms. Blondie managed to find me, being that we have never actually met, but we’ve known each other online for a few years so it was great to finally connect. We chatted for a bit and she informed me that we were running around 7:10 pace.
At which point I regretfully stated that if that were indeed the case, I needed to slow the hell down. I wished her good luck and pulled back a bit.
A few minutes later, on the long stretch of downhill approaching the infamous Cardiac Hill, I pulled a potentially-creepy-internet-stalker move and said hello to a girl in a blue skirt, betting that it was Mackenzie from the comments on Tuesday’s post. Thankfully, it was, and we ran together until we hit the uphill, at which point she smoked me.
But I kind of knew that was going to happen, because I was three-something miles in to this race and I was totally out of gas.
I chugged and huffed and puffed and pushed, but I was just done. I could blame it on the hills or the humidity, but I know it was just lack of training that lead to the grotesque show of pain and misery that I put on for the latter half of that race.
The clock said 49-something when I crossed the finish line. (Official time: 48:52.) I collected my ugly finisher’s shirt and bemoaned the apparent lack of taste on the part of Atlanta’s running community. (The t-shirt design was selected by popular vote.)
Then, after making a circuit of the finish area to find my husband and congratulate various friends (including my former co-worker from Raleigh, Bobby Mack, who finished first American), I made a beeline for the designated beer-drinking location.
Where I proceeded to stand around for two hours in wet clothes. And then walk a mile and a half home in wet clothes.
My inner thighs look like they’ve been attacked by a meat grinder. You’re welcome for the sexy image. But there’s no other way to describe it. Wet Tempo shorts are not good party clothes.
The dumbest thing about this is that I had a change of clothes in my backpack. I was simply too lazy (or perhaps too preoccupied by the beer) to walk a hundred feet to the bathroom to change. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
So, the important takeaways from my first Peachtree:
1) I have no endurance right now. I’m good for 2-3 miles of hard running and then…splat.
2) Drinking while sweaty is a dangerous activity.
Chafing aside, I’m pretty okay with how things went. Going in to this race, I knew I wasn’t going to set any records. I’d hoped to finish closer to 45 minutes, but sub-50 is fine given my lack of training.
And it’s kind of nice to know where I stand. Building my endurance back up is going to be a major project this fall. But for now, I’m happy to work on quarter-mile repeats and push-ups.