Race Recap: Regionals Round #2
|January 16, 2012||Posted by Sweet Tooth Runner under Race Recap|
Hey guys! I hope you’ve all had a great weekend! Thank you so much for the lovely comments on yesterday’s post! As promised, I’m going to tell you more about race day!
On Friday night, I did what all the cool kids were doing and headed out into the cold darkness on a short shakeout run. I am now a huge believer in shakeout runs! My legs felt much better after 3 easy miles + 5x strides on grass.
I promise I’ll clean that mirror someday…
You know it’s going to be a good race when you have Smiles in your dinner.
Best pre-race meal ever!
Woke up bright and breezy, ate white toast with jam, chugged water, and hit the road.
I’m used to only having to travel short distances for local races, but this was regionals, so it was a couple of hours drive away. It made me sleepy, and clearly I was still drowsy when we finally arrived…
Bad case of morning face. Hey, I’m a poet! I totally know it.
My dad took me to the race. He is my biggest supporter and I love him for it!! A few pre-race realisations:
- Hilly course! We walked it together and there were a couple of (killer!) long inclines and some shorter steeper ones.
- It was really cold and we froze! At least it was sunny, which was nice
- It was a beautiful (but muddy!) course though that was mostly on trails in the woods. Next time I must remember to take photos when I walk the course!
- The Portaloos had no toilet roll. Not a single one. They were definitely the worst ones I’ve experienced!
- I’m still having stomach issues before races. I have tried so many different breakfast options, but my stomach is always really unsettled, and makes itself heard in the warm-up especially! I am going to continue to experiment with different pre-race meal routines until I find something that works for me.
- At big races, I need to get to the start line early so I don’t have to stand behind people!
Ready to start! We were all freezing and I was bouncing up and down trying to stay warm!
I was not in a good position, and when the gun went off, I found myself right at the back of everyone. Although the start line itself was really long (the photo is only of the middle bit), the course narrowed really quickly, meaning that I was stuck behind a lot of people at first. I soon worked my way through, but by the time I had moved forward, I had no idea how many people were in front of me.
Most of the race I ran alone, which was quite difficult mentally. For about five minutes in the woods, I didn’t see anyone else at all! A long uphill led out of the woods onto the field for the last 400m or so. Sprint to the line!
Yeah, clearly by that point my form had gone out of the window! I blame jelly legs from all those hills!
Aaaand I finished! With no idea where I had placed or in what time, I stumbled across the line and was handed a chip that said ‘26’ on it. I almost passed out. After all that, I had come 26th?! I knew there were people ahead of me, but I was sure I had done better than that! Thankfully it was a mistake, and the wrong chip was handed to me! Instead I was handed the right one telling me that I had come 6th, along with a selection letter to be part of the regional team to compete at Nationals!
Not enough energy left to do a thumbs up haha!
No, wait, I managed it!
I was really proud of myself after this race. I knew it would be a struggle to place in the top ten since I am still in the comeback phase of injury, and still the ‘the newbie’ as my teammates jokingly call me! But I did and it feels amazing! It’s strange to think that just three months ago I ran my first race with my team, and I never thought in a million years that I’d get this far! If anything, I feel like I’ve proved to myself that anything is possible. Dealing with injury is hard, and having to cope with that both physically and mentally is very tough. Having suffered with injuries throughout the whole of 2011, I am realising that I am still healing, but have become stronger for my struggles.
I choose to rejoice.