Well, the Baltimore 10-miler was a big ‘ole mess for me! I am really disappointed in my performance. Yes, the course is really hilly; yes, it was hot. BUT–I was in shape for this. I really have no good explanation for what happened.
My plan was to go out at a 7:30 pace for the first mile and eventually average about a 7:18 to 7:20 pace. My PR–from this spring–is a low 1:13. I knew this was a much tougher course and it would be much hotter. But I also thought my fitness level could make up the deficit and that running a high 1:13 to a low 1:14 would be realistic.
First mile went according to plan. Second mile, too fast, a flat 7:00. Still…that shouldn’t have ruined my race. I got back to around a 7:20-7:30 for the next couple of miles. But my legs were feeling bad and they just felt worse as the race progressed. In the end, a 1:17 flat was my time. The silly thing is that the overall second and third place women were from my age group, as was the master’s winner, leaving me first in my age group. Should make me feel better, but it doesn’t–for me a good race is about time, not hardware.
A couple of bright spots: My friend Janelle, who is MUCH faster than me, had a bad day too, and we eventually ended up together. I’m sure by mile 7 she could have ditched me, but she was kind enough to run as my wing man and encourage me through the many tough spots. I can’t imagine how ugly my time would have been without her! And my friend Jess, who took the relaxed attitude into the race, went 1:12. Great job on a tough day!
So my dilemma is where to go from here. I can’t really point to any one factor that brought me down in this one. I am now a mental mess about my racing. Am I overtrained? On paper, I would have to say no. But the last couple of weeks, my legs felt bad, until my last few days pre-race. I am not mentally burned out–I’m still hungry. So that doesn’t sound like overtraining. But something’s going on here and I need to figure it out so that I can salvage my season.