Race Report - 2012 Summer Cross Country Runs 1 & 3 Miles (Week 3)

6/20/2012 11:06:00 AM

More heat, more humidity, exact same time in the 3 mile race as last week. That about sums it up. Well, almost. I took it very easy over the 1 mile distance, chatting with Cary Long and hearing about his Chattanooga Stage Race adventures (or would suffer fest be more appropriate;-) from the previous weekend.

Me right between masters runner "par excellence" Marty Clarke and local ultrarunning legend DeWayne Satterfield...in a race?...yeah, for about 2 seconds;-)

For the 3 mile race, I wasn't even sure if I was going to race at all or just trot along. It took me a little bit of looking around to find a couple of runners that had beaten me in a few of the shorter distance races lately and I figured it was time to see if I could "return the favor" so to speak. I won't mention any names, you know who you are, but it has been eating at me just a little that there are a couple of runners who I recall beating in some races last year that have been beating me in these same races this year. Nothing like a little healthy (or unhealthy) competition to make myself train and run harder:-)

I started the race at my usual pace, but slightly slower than last week. The return leg felt harder this week, so I backed off a little and tried to do the hills slow but steady to preserve some energy for later. I had passed one of my "nemises" about 1.5 miles into the run and I spotted the other just ahead of me. I decided to get behind him and try to relax. I had no plans to push at this point, just hang with him to see what happens. When we ran the final loop around the soccer field, I decided I would see if I can pass him on the final .25 miles. Just as that thought crossed my mind, Kathy Youngren passed me, and might I add with ease. No matter, I am man enough to handle being chicked, especially by a great runner like her;-) I kicked it into high gear, hoping I had enough push left to pass without getting passed again. I don't think I've kicked that hard in a race in a long time. It took all I had and I could her his footfalls right behind me, picking up the pace along with me. We pushed each other to the finish and I managed to stay ahead...for the first time in quite some time.

I L-O-V-E healthy competition to push myself to the max on the final stretch. Thanks guys.

P.S.: Good luck to Rob and Kathy Youngren who are about to embark on a great adventure in Hungary at the Ultra Balaton and to HTC's "el presidente" Eric Fritz, who will be challenging the great Western States 100 Mile race next weekend. I hope both Kathy and Eric recover from their recent injuries enough to not only do well but to enjoy the experience. Good luck, guys!

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