Sunday, February 17, 2013

Race: Dirty Love Trail 10k

The Dirty Love Trail Run 10k

I know, I's not an ultra..but it was a great race! With sick kids, sick wife, cancelled snowshoe race, and raging to run something hard this weekend, I was lucky to get out and sign up for the Dirty Love Trail Run 10k which is about 10min from me on trails that I know well.

I can't recall the last time I actually raced a 10k on the road or trails, so this was a PR and a CR for me :)

I got in a nice 3mi warm-up on the icy/snowy trails, shed the tights & fleece cap for shorts on this sunny day, lined up and decided to just run hard and try not to ease into a comfortable pace. There were just under 300 runners and in short races with this many people, I rarely place in the top....

The course is a great mixture of a creek crossing, singletrack, bridal trails, and lots of good variations in terrain. The hardest part was trying to get decent footing on the icy trail. Staying on the edge of the trail where there was a dusting of snow was the best bet...then just hoping for the best when slipping around.

The strategy was to start smart, run the tough hill, Ox Lane with an average of 19.5% grade at a decent clip, push over the top and try to keep it under an 8min/mi for the rest of the race.

That's the race....up the hill, along some good rollers...then ultimately back down and to the finish.

Lessons learned: It hurt, just like it should! Bit by bit, I chipped away at people in front of me....reeled them in one by one. Bombed the downhills, pushed the uphills, and tried not to chill out on the flatter sections. It by far was one of my most well played races. As my buddy Dave said "You may have found your distance!" Maybe...especially when this is not what I train for.

Results:  I finished at 47:38 (7:40 pace) for 12th Overall, and 2nd in my AG which is really good for me in a field that large. Had the footing been better, we all would've run faster...but I was REALLY happy to finish that close to the top 10. I am amazed at the top male (John S.?) who averaged 6:27/mi over that terrain...astounding!

I only got in 9+ miles that day of running and about the same on Saturday which was -10 miles I wanted over the weekend....However, it's early in the season and I have solid miles in so I am not fretting it. Fast speedwork counts double, right??

Shoes: zero drop Altra Lone Peaks, baby! This is my 3rd run in them (second pair) and they worked fantastic. No hot spots, great traction considering, and my ever present smartwool socks.
Overall, I was just really happy to have a great race...the day went well and I've got a nice mug to boot! See you on the trails!


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