Saturday, June 28, 2014

Pineland Striders Independence 10k Race Recap

10k out at my old stomping grounds in Medford, NJ this morning.

I had debated signing up for a long time because I'm trying to take it easy this summer and not burn myself out from running.  But the desire to compete pulled me out of bed and out to the Pine Barrens for one last hurrah.  The race consisted of a 5k and a 10k and a few hundred runners showed up.

Less than a half mile into the race, a giant moving truck started to back into the lead pack of runners.  It was pandemonium as they pounded on the back of the truck and yelled at the driver while the driver just laughed his head off at all of us.

The race ran by the camp where I used to work, into the neighborhoods of million dollar homes owned by Philadelphia professional athletes, and back into the Pine covered yards of more average-sized homes.

At the halfway point, one of the volunteers yelled at me that I was one place away from the top ten.  It awakened in me a sense of competition that, despite the sunburn from the previous day's surfing and the near burnout from running too much in the heat and humidity of the past few weeks, convinced me to pick up the pace.  I started to catch up with a few of the runners ahead of me.

The final half mile crossed open fields on the campus of Shawnee High School and finished on the track.  On the track I found one more runner and gave everything I had left to pass him in the homestretch.

Running fast hurts.  This is nothing new to most people.  Taking it slow today and telling myself that it's just a small local race would have been easy, but it's the feeling at the end of the race that I am addicted to.  Getting up super early for races is not fun.  Paying for races is not fun.  The pain of trying to keep up an uncomfortable pace is not fun.  But when I've just crossed the finish line, and I'm keeled over sucking in air like I just might die, knowing I raced as best I could, well, that is why I do these races.

I must have passed 5 guys in the second half of the race, and finished in 9th place overall. Either that volunteer couldn't count, or he was simply trying to motivate me by flat out lying to me.  My cross country coach in high school used to do the same thing.


9th overall (out of 99)
1st in age group

Met up with Elizabeth at the race, a woman I'd met a few years ago when we both won the Collingswood Book Festival 5k and received absurdly large trophies for such a small race:

2011 Collingswood Book Festival 5k winners

Elizabeth won the 5k, and though I won my age group today, we joked that I was slacking this year by only winning my age group and not the whole race.  Came so close to replicating the photo from 3 years ago!

I got a medal and a $35 gift certificate to the Haddonfield Running Company (redeemable with $70 purchase).

Overall a great race today, and one I can recommend!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...