Monday, October 6, 2014

A Day Late And A Dollar {Paul} Short{8K XC}

I wasn't the biggest xc fan growing up,in high school xc was running around the soccer pitches at Charlton Park and my one xc race for my first club Kent AC was in December when it was cold and rainy and I got covered in mud which did little to warm me to it.
A couple of years later John Treacy won back to back World XC C'ships in Glasgow in 78 and in Limerick in 79 which rekindled my interest in xc but I still wasn't having it as a runner untill I began my masters track career and I came to embrace xc s the natural bridge between the end of the outdoor track season and the start of the indoor season ergo waking up at the ungodly hour of 5.10am on Saturday morning to be at Jefferson train station by  7.10am to get out to Jenkintown to catch my ride to Lehigh University for the 41st annual Paul Short XC race.

I heard great things about the Paul Short race,and having jogged the 10k course twice since August in prep for Decemnbers Club Nationals 10K I was ready for the slightly shorter but no less challenging 8k course.
The forecast was 100% chance of rain which never bodes well but at almost 51 as oppossed to 13 when I ran my first xc race the prospect of getting wet and muddy didn't phase me like it did way back when and after a two mile jog of the back part of the course where I got suitably soaked I declared myself certifiable but ready for the 10.10am gun time,by which time the rain had actually stopped which was a blessing.

I took my place on the starting line w/ almost 500 other runners for the open mens race,from a spectators view the start must resemble the fight scene from ''Braveheart" as the "hordes" go charging across the field into the first corn's just as spectacular from a runners prespective let me tell ya!!!.....although I kept the "they may take out land,but they'll never take our freedom!!!!" battlecry to myself.......maybe I'll save that for Club Nationals!!!!
Given 8k is 7k above my prefered distance I knew not to go out too hard in the opening mile but in a field of almost 500 it hard not to get swept along 5.47 for the opening mile 5.30 would've been too rich,6.00 might have been better.

12.02 at 2 miles,even though I was towards the back of the field I was still in contact w/ other runners which made life easier,conditions underfoot weren't too bad and I was actually enjoying myself....a far cry from my last xc race  2012s Club Nationals in Lexington Kentucky which was a low point of my entire career and a motivator to this xc season.
18.12 at three miles,I was still picking off runners ahead of me which always helps w/ forward momentum although my legs were beginning to feel the effects of a dip in training of late,I kind of knew today would be the "bitch slap" I needed to get me back into the swing of training,10 weeks till another 2k back here on Dec 13th.

24.37 at 4 miles less than a mile to go as I came back onto the main part of the course hopefully come Club Nationals I'll be a lot sharper than I was on Saturday ie no more blowing off training runs like I have in the past 10 days.....bad runner,shame shame!!!.
30.51 at the finish,I was hoping for 30.00ish so all in all I can't be too dismisive of my efforts over 8k xc I think it ranks 5th fastest of 8 so lets see what the New Jersey Cships bring in three weeks time.

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