Sunday, September 09, 2012
Today, I ran the Defeat of Jesse James Days 15k in Northfield, MN. It's basically farm country in that area but don't let that fool you into thinking it's a flat run, because it sure isn't!
The first year I ran, I was basically in my running prime and finished fourth in my age group. Of course, there were only six runners in my group but I felt really good about that finish.
Every time I have run it since then, I have gotten progressively worse, which is basically true of most of my race times for the last 2 years. And today, I got my official course and distance PW (personal worst). I finished third from the last.
During much of the race, I was the very last runner and the sag wagon behind me really got into my head. When I initially realized I was last, I spent about 2 miles barely able to breathe because I was afraid I'd get pulled from the course. A DNF (Did Not Finish) was not an option and I managed to finally shake it and get my breathing under control.
I was able to have a nice chat with the girl who finished second to the last and encourage her that she'd be able to run a marathon in about a month because she was on about a 5 MPH pace. That would allow her to finish within the 6 hour time frame. I also determined to pass the older guy who was shuffling along, which helped my thoughts. Mostly, I am glad I finished.