I was excited, but not the slightest bit nervous. That’s probably to be expected since this race was more like a workout than a true test of my fitness. I’ve been putting in a lot of work – more miles, cross-training, and strength than ever before. I already knew that I was fit and since I didn’t taper for the race their was no unnecessary expectation or pressure that I sometimes put on myself. It was surprisingly cold, rainy, and windy so I did a little bit longer of a warm up than usual. Drills and strides went well, I felt pretty good and was ready to get a new PR. The 1500m world leader was in the race as well as many other professionals – my plan was to stay controlled the first lap and then start to reel people in (“pick them off like cherries,” my sister used to say).
During the Race:
First lap: 66 seconds, last place. Second lap: started moving up, felt kind of like I was sprinting. Third lap: felt that 1500m burn, gave in and slowed down letting a gap form between me and the group I was with. Last 300: tried not to feel sorry for myself and kicked with what I had left for the last 200 meters (unfortunately it wasn’t much). End result: 8th place, 4:23.
Definitely wasn’t sharp, which I knew going into the race, but I still didn’t run as fast as I think I’m capable of. My legs held me back, not my breathing – actually a good thing since I’m training for the 5k. Made tactical mistakes, got cut off once and wasted energy fighting for position in the first lap even though I was in last. Thankfully I can take everything I’ve learned from this race and use it at Mt. SAC on Friday. My workout this week isn’t as hard as last weeks and now that I’ve had a 1500m race buster, I’m looking to drop that PR again!