Run the Rock 5K at Beaver Ranch in Conifer was a pretty fun course. I was hoping for more technical downhills after a handful of moderately steep climbs but they were more rolling and "easy" downhills. Blah. Overall good race with a fantastic start/finish lodge and super clean bathrooms.
I arrived at the race start an hour early so after packet pickup/registration I sat in my car facing the start line and just people watched.
I love people watching. There were young and old, scrawny, athletic, and chubby. Couples, Moms with kids, high school track/cross-country, wifes cheering on hubbies, all sorts of people. I immediately picked out the sponsored clad elites: AKA those that will kick my ass pronto and sat there admiring. I got some good giggles out of some of the runner's pre-race routines and running attire.
The last 5K I had done was on the treadmill with sucky weather, so my plan was to try to go as fast as I could and see where that left me. I stripped down to the bare essentials: no pack, no water, no GU (it's a 5K people...). I just had the shorts, shoes, and shirt on me plus sunglasses, ipod, and gaiters. That's about as light as I get.
It was actually a weird feeling, borderline f****g uncomfortable.
I have been doing long distances for quite some time now that my hydration pack with all the "stuff" in it had become just an extra appendage to my body. When I shrug it off my shoulders after a long run, in all its foul B.O. smelling straps, sticky used GU wrappers tucked in one pocket, and sweat soaked back I kinda feel like a piece of me is removed.
***on a side note, I keep telling myself I should wash this pack. Seriously, it smells. Smells real bad like a boys locker room after a week of games. The funk is so thick you could scrape it off and shmear it on toast. Gross. However, every time I convince myself "just after this run, I'll wash it. After this run" I then get home and think to myself, "why wash it when I am going out tomorrow for another run. It'll just get stinky again." Maybe I should at least wash it before the TransAlps, or would leaving it funky be like a badge of honor: THIS is how much I've trained for this bitch.
Anyhow, what this race taught me? I need to work on my speed drills. BAD. Granted, I wasn't horrible, but I felt I could have knocked off at least 2 minutes to my time.
3.1 miles of decently rigorous climbing and casual downhills in 28 minutes isn't shabby for a trail run. Horrid for a road run- FOR ME (i'm not judging anyone else but myself), but not too bad for a trail. I am going to work on some drills for a bit and attempt that 5K on my own to see if I can do it in 26.