Thursday, January 1, 2015

New Year’s Day Challenge 2015–Robin

January 1, 2015 – Auburn, CA
Hill Climb 1 – 3m Old Foresthill Rd
Hill Climb 2 - 1.2m Raley's Hill
Resolution Run - 10m Trails
Time / Place:
Hill Climb 1 – 18:03 / 2nd (PR 16:56, 2014)
Hill Climb 2 – 6:35 / 2nd (PR 5:52, 2014)
Run - 1:23:56 / 3rd  (PR 1:16:04, 2011)
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Part 1: The Bike
It’s the chilliest morning of the winter for sure!  Karen and I head out on the warm-up loop.  The boys (Jeff, Jesse, Kayden, Lance and Troy) wait for Troy to fix a flat.  We all meet up at the Confluence where Flor is warming up on her trainer.  We all agree that that was the way to go today!
I know that I’m not in the same shape as last year but with that in mind I know I’m not off the hook and cannot slack…Ironman Coeur d’Alene is 6 months away…yikes!!
CLIMB #1: Karen and I are the first to go.  The start times vary to even out the field so that we all finish close together.  Ready, set, go!  Right away my legs are screaming at me.  Karen takes off and I try to relax and let my legs adjust to the strain. 
I look back and see Flor coming now so I push my way to Karen.  I know she’ll eventually catch me but I’ll try to hold her off as long as possible.  By Mammoth Bar, Flor has passed me and is flying up the hill.  Now, I need to hold off the guys!
A few miles up the road flattens out and I try to capitalize on the break and hammer.  I look at my watch and see that breaking 17 mins is not a possibility.  Can I even break 18 mins?  Always need to try no matter what!
The road keeps going and going and the clock keeps ticking.  Finally I see the Stop Sign ahead.  Go, go, go!  I sprint and cross the line at 18:03.  Oh, so close!  Good effort!  I’m glad I held off the boys.  I’m tired!  Thank you Jesus for getting me to the top! 
I congratulate Flor and Karen.  It looks like they both had a personal best today.  The guys finish strong.  We group up for a photo.  Rob Hodges, Flor’s husband and our recorder for the morning, takes our picture and we are on our way!
CLIMB #2: We line up in the order we finished on Climb #1 just before the Foresthill bridge.  This climb is short but steep.  Ready, set, go!  We time-trial across the bridge and hit the hill fast.  Quickly the group breaks apart and I watch as the guys and Flor take off.  It’s Karen and I fighting for the next spot!
Ugh, this is hard!  Come on legs!!  I pull away from Karen for a time.  Mentally I am struggling to keep pushing.  Soon I hear Karen coming and I try to hold her off.  We are pushing hard.  Almost there…one last push!  We strain to the top and finish seconds apart. Whew!!  I’m done!  Thank you Lord!  Even though a lot of this felt like torture, I am glad that I woke up and got to the starting line.  I congratulate Karen and the others.  Time to ride home and recover as much as possible for the run.
Part 2: The Run
The girls are racing the 5K today while Troy and I are running the 10miler.  This will be Ariel’s 1st Resolution Run.  Jeff Landauer volunteered to run with her and support her through it…what a great blessing!
We get our race numbers and warm-up and stretch.  My hamstrings have improved since CIM but they are still quite tight.  The plan is to take it out slower than normal and then try to ramp up the pace. 
I line up with Flor, Karen and Troy.  We are the first to go with the 10K 15 min after and then the 5K 30 min after.  Not sure how the start time changes with affect the 10 miler since all 3 courses overlap with one another.
Ready, set, go!  Everyone takes off quick.  It’s basically downhill for the first 2.5 miles so folks are flying.  Downhill running is definitely a weakness to begin with and with a slower start I’m falling back quickly.  I look to the Lord and ask for patience and peace.
Mile 1 is 7:21.  Legs are okay.  I cannot see Karen or Troy now.
Mile 2 is 7:28.  Down, down, down!  I see a guy with a Leadville 100 Mile Run shirt.  I ask him about that race and other races he’s doing.  It’s a nice mental break to chat!
We get to one of my favorite short climbs, Cardiac Bypass.  I’m hoping to make up some ground on other racers there.  I say goodbye to my new friend and head up the trail.  Whoa, it’s much harder climbing after riding hard!  Halfway up my legs start feeling better.
Mile 3 is 8:35.  Okay, nice a flat for a bit!
Mile 4 is 7:56.  Downhill again!  We follow the Dam Rd. down most of the way and turn off onto the trail. Back up a bit and then flat. Again the legs are in shock and it takes a few minutes to adjust.  I see Jesse Warda and he’s feeling nauseas.  I encourage him to hang in there. 
Mile 5 is 7:32.  That just might be the last sub-8 min split for the day.  It’s a steep climb up to the Western States Terrace Trail which runs below Robie Point. 
Mile 6 is 8:40.  I catch up to Gary Carpenter tell him good job.  It won’t be long before I get to the other side of Robie Point to see runners coming back.  Who will I see?  I notice a gal up ahead and catch up to her.  I pass her and tell her good job.  She picks up the pace and we start to go back and forth some.
Mile 7 is 8:01.  I see Brian Hacker coming back…then Bailey…then Troy.  Go!  I pull ahead of that gal.
I see the 10K turn-around and start looking for mine.  I don’t see a turn-around in the normal spot and it looks like we are running all the way to Hwy 49!  Here comes Karen…then Jason Shykowski and Kayden Kelly.  Go!  I hope to catch Jason and Kayden!  My hamstrings are doing pretty good but there just is little speed and fluidity.  I’ll take what I can get.  Thanks Lord!
Mile 8 is 8:03.  That gal is really close behind me.  I hope to make the climb up to Robie Point count!  I see Kayden and Jason.  Halfway up I realize that they are running strong and I’m not gaining any ground on them.  I make it up to Robie and then it’s right back down.
Mile 9 is 8:55.  I’m almost done!  That gal passes me again and try to stay near.  I hope to make my move on the last few hills.
I catch up to Kayden and tell him good job.  Jason is still out of reach and continues to run strong.
I close the gap on the last few hills on that girl.  It’s going to be close!
Mile 10 is 9:42.  The finish is around the corner and that girl is right there.  As we make one of the last turns I go to pass her.  She senses me and takes off.  My hamstrings are too tight to be able to move fast and I cannot go any faster.  She finishes ahead of me by seconds. 
We congratulate each other after the race and find out we are in the same age group.  Her name is Jennifer.  I find out later there was another girl in our age group less than a second ahead of Jennifer!  So 1st and 3rd (myself) were separated by 5 seconds!  Wow, a strong kick was the key today.  Too bad I didn’t have that!  I feel the frustration building…I ask the Lord to help me be content.  I have a lot to be thankful for…like a wonderful husband and 2 wonderful girls!