Before I get to our ladies' 2nd podium sweep this year (the first was at the Valentine's Day 5k), I have to note that I was on the news! I've been on the news before, but in the past it's been seconds after I cross the finish line and I have sweat stinging my eyes and my brain is totally fried so anything I say could be questionable (when I won my first marathon I told the news I drank a lot in college...?). This time I got to do a sit down interview in a studio with time to fix my hair and put on mascara and overall appear to be somewhat put together. It was a really fun opportunity and I'm stoked that Channel 7 wanted to talk to me! And I don't even sound stupid: http://www.thedenverchannel.com/video/30971262/index.html (I'm just doing the half this year, in case that was misleading - leaving the full up to Nicole Chyr!! Course record!!!)
Okay. On to today's glory. Today was the nation's largest 5 mile race - the Cherry Creek Sneak! I, for whatever reason, was not looking forward to this, then got really nervous, then just wanted to go home. I felt tired and scared (?) and not into it. But got my head together for what I think was my best performance of the year. I started just a smidge too fast, thinking I might catch up to my f'ing ridiculously fast teammate Kara Lubieniecki... ha! Psych. I told myself to chill out and focus on a good time because a win was NOT happening today. I was afraid that my start would ruin things later, and maybe it did a little, but I kept it under control and stayed strong and steady the whole race. Another teammate who's super tough to beat, miss Kelsey Jones, passed me around mile 1.5 (and actually my first thought there was "i need to start working out more" 'cause she is FIT) but I let her go and focused on my own race. Staying fairly even, I ran with Dan Spale for a bit and then slowly worked my way to yet another teammate, Jeanne Cooper. She was staying really strong, too, but aparently she raced yesterday as well... She was a little worn and I was lucky :) I passed her around mile 4 and, for the very first time this year, kept a solid pace for the last mile. It was slightly uphill and I could feel the work I was putting in, but, again, felt like I was in control and stayed focused on the finish. Kara won, Kelsey was second, I was third, and Jeanne was 5th (nipped by the speedy Christie Foster in the end, nice work to both of them!). Roost swept the podium and grabbed four of the top five places! I'm not disappointed I didn't win, I'm really really happy with the way this race went. I haven't felt this strong all year and am really glad to see my mental game coming together.
On the men's side, our guy Keith Solverson was back to defend his win this year and just barely missed it. What a battle he and the winner had going - matching each other stride for stride up til the very last second! I know what it's like to not win a race you really really want to so I hope he knows his performance was top notch and we're all still super proud of him! Tyler rounded out the top five, and looked mighty hot doing it (this course has a few turn-arounds, which, while painful, do allow for some good viewing opportunities)! Here are the results: http://results.active.com/pages/searchform.jsp?rsID=127117
This race has become more competitive over the past few years and it's great to see our team keeping up with (and, um, passing) the competition!
Native Eyewear marketing maven Jax is finishing up her 365-day running mission (which is super impressive) and ran the 5k today - racing without a single day's rest this year!! My friend Charles Hillig won the 5k ("did you annihilate it?" "yes") and my former teammate and 2:43 marathoner/2nd American at Chicago won the 10 mileer. (Tristan Mitchell, who's on his way to a rockin' race at the Colfax Marathon, ran a great 10 miler, too, but I didn't check the complete results...)
More than anything, I really needed to have some validation that running a smart race is worth it. I tend to get nervous and want to fight for the win right off the bat. I have the Greenland Trail 25k next Saturday, which is on a challenging course. I really want a course record there and I know it's possible but now, I have a better idea of how to attack it. As in, don't try 5:30 for the first mile. If I can stay strong but conservative the first half, I'll have it in me to push the start of the second half (a lovely uphill stretch for 5 miles) and crush the last 3 miles (downhill!). I can't wait! Til next time...