One of my goals this year was to run all 7 of the NE Grand Prix races so at the end of the season I could earn an iron runner jacket. Yes, on a quest for the jacket. Going to be tough as twice I will need to double road races and triathlons in the same weekend. Plus will need to run two marathons in one year... Boston and Bay State.
Sunday was the first race, a 10-miler in Amherst MA. Going in I had a 5 minute window for a goal ... 1:10 to 1:15. Weather forecast originally wasn't good but then the storm slowed and seemed as if we might make it through the race without the cold rain and snow. Funny side story, my gf called Sat morning to see if I was still "up for it." Of course, I said yes. She laughed and said I knew you wouldn't bail!!!! Weather doesn't mean much to me ... I race. Period.
Pre-race was good, warm-up and such. Although at the last minute I thought I needed to change up into shorts, but didn't. In the end, a good decision.
Plan was to start conservatively, given the course, then settle in and give it more at the end. I did well. Mile splits were irrelevant given all the hills, but overall did run negative splits. I looked at my time at mile 6 and realized that to get a 1:15 I needed to pick up the pace. I maintained the next mile, then picked it up. The rain started at mile 7, but still my last 3 miles were good! As I came into the finish, my girlfriend was cheering -(who finished about 3 minutes ahead of me because she rocks)- and then said, "you have company" so I picked it up to the finish. Final time, 1:15:45. I'll take it. Truth be told, wasn't sure I could go 1:15 so was very happy.
It has been a long time since I crossed a finish line not only happy, but stoked! A feeling I thought I might never feel again. I love that feeling ...
Called my coach on the way home ... answered the phone not with a hello, but "how did it go?" When I gave my time, he said really nice job. Not something I hear very often from him. Very good feeling.
Ready to tackle the remaining six races. God, it feels good to be back!!!!