Sunday, September 8, 2013

Top of the Rock Recap

This post is going to be short and sweet, but I really wanted to share a race recap! This was my second race, and man did I have a much better time than the first one.

It was 45 minutes away (which was quite nice compared to the last one which was an hour and a half away without traffic) - I woke up at 6:00, stuffed a banana with peanut butter in my face, and we were off.

The JV boys ran first (I didn't really have an opportunity to take pictures of the experience, as I was busy warming up/cheering on/ and, well, racing), and about halfway through the JV girls started their warm up.

Come 8:45, it was JV girls' turn to head off.

Just know that you can't see me in this pic.

We ran at a greaaattt time because the temperature was perfect. I actually had a sweatshirt on before we ran because it was that perfectly crisp autumn air. Love love love it. 

Anyways, even though I feel like I've been doing XC for many years, this was only my second race, and it was a learning experience once again. 

For instance, I learned that I am not very good at finding my place in the beginning of the race. I am great at keeping pace, and great at pulling through with a strong finish, but I cannot seem to figure out how to get up to a good placement at the beginning. *Take note for later.

Ahhhh this run was so much freaking better than my first. No shin splints or runner's knee or sore calves/thighs/entire body. The course was in a field that was pretty much flat.

Except the race wasn't named "Top of the Rock" for no reason. At the 1.25 mile mark came...the rock.

You guys, this was a hill. Like a super steep, rocky, trail-blazed hill. It reminded me of the hill that we do repeats on *shudder* only longer and more winding. Luckily I had a girl from my team to partner up with and we trekked up the hill pretty quickly. We were winded, but not dying. I guess hill repeats aren't only for pain....

After passing the "top," I zoomed down like nobody's business. At least it felt like that. :)

Once I passed the 2-mile mark was when I sort of mentally blocked myself. There was someone I needed to pass/catch up to, but I was scared that I wouldn't be able to because of how far ahead she was. This is where the fact that I need to get better placement in the beginning comes in, because my coach wanted me in the top 5 JV girls for our team running. 

I finished up the race in 26:50 (PR), 7th on our JV team, and 26th overall with 100/150 girls. Not too shabby, even though I was expected to come in with the top five JV girls. I'll admit I was a little annoyed/upset/frustrated/whatever about the fact that I didn't manage that, because I know I could have if I had pushed myself. But I know that I need to push myself harder, and I didn't obsess about it like I'm prone to doing. It just gives me another goal to work up to. :)

After my race, the varsity boys and girls went in the blazing sun (poor kids...). But they were troopers, and the boys landed in first place with the girls in second! JV girls also earned second place!

On zee way home, I scarfed down my Clif Bar that Mommy packed for meeeee. I had already had a banana/chocolate milk post-race about an hour earlier.

Here's a little look at Georgia countryside:

A mound built by Indians...spiffy.

All in all, it was a good race, I definitely learned what I need to change, and I have some new goals for this week. I can't wait for this week's practices so I can get even stronger and more ready for next weekend's race.

Peace out, girl scouts.

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