Saturday, August 23, 2008

HTC Leg 33

This was it -- the oft misunderstood third leg. Like the Trinity, we have a grasp on the first two (The Father and The Son), but you never fully understand the implications of the third leg (The Holy Spirit) until you experience it.

7.71 miles, 51:41, 6:42 pace, avg HR 157

Many of you who read this run races and know the toll it takes on your body. But there seems to be an exponential effect of fatigue when running three races in eighteen hours. The beauty of running is on full display when you answer the call to run despite total exhaustion of body and mind. I looked to my teammates and competitors and knew we were all riding in the same boat.

In short, it was a blast.

I toed the exchange point, nervously wondering if I could live up to my self-imposed expectations of running a strong eight miles. Time wasn't my concern so much as strength. I didn't want to give anything less than my best, which is easier said than done. Aided by some restful sleep (I'm pretty sure I led the van in that category) I took off and ran a mile on feel before looking at the Garmin for split information. 6:32. After that the rolling hills began. They weren't so challenging except for the fact that they came on my third leg. Almost everyone else had more elevation issues than my relay legs, so it seems petty to even mention it. But the hills did slow me down, and I tried my best to take advantage of the downhills by focusing on my form and turnover. 6:43 mile 2.

Mile three was even slower at 6:48. My teammates met me here and gave me water. I picked up the pace and tried to look good for them. It helps when you see your fellow runners in good spirits because a positive attitude is contagious. My new pace was good, so I tried to keep it up and ran a 6:32 fourth mile. At this point I'm over half way done. The next two miles were slow (6:38 and 6:46).

But even though I'm slowing down, I'm mowing down the competition. During this leg I passed around ten people and I wasn't passed. I pushed through the final stretch and handed it off to Jeb.

I'll write more later because my battery is low.

1 comment:

mccainiac said...

You were awesome! Thanks for coming out to Orygun and running with the TryAthletes. Everyone had nothing but nice things to say about you. I'm looking forward to showing you some more great running here in Portland.

Believe it or not, the cool, overcast weather makes for perfect running conditions. Not too hot, not too cold, just right... until of course, I return home to the Gulf Coast and am totally unprepared for the heat and humidity because I'm no longer acclimated! :)

Take care and see you next month.

Geaux Tigers!