That was the phrase that pays this past weekend. Saturday I did the Quarryman challenge in Lemont. The 10 mile race is advertised as the Chicago land areas hilliest running event, and it certainly is. I did it last year and knew what to expect but the only difference is this year I did not train in the hills prior to the event, and although I have been riding hills on the bike, was a bit concerned. The group of friends I see regularly were there as first timers, and just like last week, this race looked like another edition of cat and mouse. Turns out we went back and forth during the run which kept our competitive juices flowing the entire time. Races like that keep everyone honest, and bring out the best in all of us. This event was no exception. By mile 7 I decided that if I was going to shake everyone off, I would need to do it following an extended climb, and I did just that. I took a guess that my friends are not used to digging into the pain cave and hurt for extended periods of time, and since I do have that experience, I decided to try and put the hurt on and see how it went. The plan worked, and I stayed away down to the last mile in which I dug deep and really took an extended charge at the finish leaving everyone a good distance behind. Don't get me wrong, I like these guys, but who totes the line not wanting to win? It's all in the spirit of good honest competition, and I'm VERY greatful to have been provided the ability to score my own personal victory once again. The ZOOTS compression wear ROCKED post race, and I was able to go out for an easy ride in the evening and a recovery run on Sunday. I do have heel pain probably brought on by 2 weeks of big milage races, but with no immediate running events on the calendar I can now retreat to the bike for some much anticipated time on the bike. So 2 races in the bag and a very good start to the year. Runners high once again.
10 mile quarryman challenge 1:18:29 11th place in age group 7:51 pace