I run like a girl ... and am proud of it.
This morning, S and I ran the Montrail Run Like a Girl 8K at Pocahontas State Park and despite being forewarned about the hills and pretty sure that I would probably collapse on one of them, I was rather excited going into the race. S and I were joined by 400 other women for the 4.97 mile trail run and with my Garmin ready (pointless, since most of the run was under cover) we headed out at the front of the pack.
But that didn't last long. Within seconds of starting, the two of us were engulfed by runners. But we trekked on, hill after hill, praying for it to be over (I told you I don't like to run.) We had been told there were water stops at about mile 1.25 and 3.75, so when I passed the first stop I thought to myself, "Oh that first mile or so went by pretty fast. I feel good and those hills are nothing." Yeah, I should have known better. The stretch between the two water stops seemed to drag on and on and on. By this point, S and I had seperated. I was slightly ahead of S, and since I didn't really know where she was, I used her as motivation. I just kept thinking, "If I stop and walk up one of these hills S will kill me."
By the time I got to the second water stop I really thought I was going to have to stop. I was beat. But again, the voice in my head kept me from doing so. Then sudden happiness hit me, the one mile to go sign!!! So I kicked it into high gear, and then a SUPER HUGE hill stood in front of me and I couldn't make it all the way to the top (my heart rate was 197 at this point), so I walked to the top and ran down all the way to another huge hill, where I walked again. Finally, I could hear the music of the finish area, so I sprinted (seriously, like at 100m pace) the last 400 meters of the race.
And I am so happy that I did. By my watch I finished in 41:56 and the race clock was around 41:58 when I crossed. I improved my 8K PR by 1:20, super awesome considering I walked some and the race was hilly (especially compared to the flat to downhill run of the NTELOS 8K). And although I am waiting for the official results, I am pretty sure I finished in the top 30. So, basically I'm psyched. It's awesome to run like a girl!!
UPDATE: I finally got the results of the race, and here's how it stacked up. My official time was 41:57 which placed me 6th in my age group (out of 60) and 33rd overall.