Hillbilly Hike today. Same half I've done here in Carlisle three years in a row now. Goal was a PR, I've had pretty good workouts lately and my fitness has been solid since coming back from my injury. Was really hoping to skip the 1:16's all together and possible hit somewhere in the 1:15's, but that was a super stretch goal. My backup goal was a PR of any type, with the hope of sub-1:17. Flew in last night, normal prerace routine for everything. weather was pretty good - 41 degrees, light winds, spitting rain occasionally. Goal was to start out aggressive and stay on it as long as I could. Here is how it went down:
2- 5:49 (11:44)
3- 5:46 (17:30) first 5k was 18:05ish, exactly on 5:50 pace
4- 5:44 (23:14), mile is downhill, always the fastest of the race, I decided to let it ride and bank time - turned out to be a good, though painful decision
5- 5:47 (29:01), was somewhere near 28:49 for 8k
6- 5:53 (34:54) 10k was around 36:07, 18:02 2nd 5k
7- 5:52.3 (40:48)
8- 5:52.3 - same split! really steadying out the pace (46:43)
9- 5:55 (52:38)
10- 5:57 (58:35, starting to get a little difficult here) we turned eastward into the SE wind and it was noticeable, also was feeling somewhat tired and stomach was starting to not feel great) really good 10 mile split though)
11- 5:55 (1:04:30)
12- 6:02 (1:10:32, slowed down considerably here, just lost focus) had a walker on the course run into me right after this mile, kind of snapped me out the funk i was in and i started just going for it the last mile
13- 5:50 (1:16:22)
.11 - 31.2 (5:07 pace)
TOTAL -- 1:16:48, 5:51.4 avg mile pace, a PR by 34 seconds!!
Recap - it was painful, I was definitely feeling it the last 5k and I almost puked at the end, but this was a great effort and a well-earned PR. I fought the whole race and even when my pace started going south around mile 11 and 12, I persevered and knocked out a strong last 1.1 to finish under 1:17. I think this is as much as I have in me right now. the sub 1:16 was not a possibility today. I think I can get there next year or two maybe, but in the meantime, I need to reflect on how strong of PR 1:16:48 really is. I've trained really hard for this and despite added adversity this fall with not only coming back from injury but the stress of international travel upcoming, I was very pleased to run such a great race!