Nashotah Park Trail Assail 10k

Nashotah Park 10K Race Report

58:47

My past week went by way to fast, I'm not sure if it was the marathon or just a busy week. I hardly could remember and get my act together before my race. Sorry, no flat shot this week. However it was in the low 60's so I wore a tank top and shorts. The night before the race I went over to visit with my parents. My dad usually watches my daughter while my husband and I run in the trail assail series. I'm not opposed to pushing her but on trail I think it would be a little more challenging. My dad asked me what pace I planned on going. I replied back probably 1:02- 1:03.

Someone sent me a message last week asking if I ever set time goals for myself and how I set them. First thing, I do set time goals for myself- not ever race and not overtime. The first step I take in establishing a time goal is my previous race history, I've ran this race course approximately 10 times already. My range in times have been 54:39- 1:10:16, so roughly a 15 minutes times gap. The second thing I ask myself is what are my current training status. I'm currently not training my hardest given that a ran a marathon a week ago. i've been trying to keep my flat road training around 8:30- 9 minute miles. The third question I ask myself is how does my body feel. My body feels great no aches and pains that are effected by running. I typically run trail races at slightly slower than road races. Therefore , I estimated I would finish around 1:02- 1:03.   

We got the race and I have a ton of friend running this series this year so it's really really nice I think maybe I know 10-20 people per race. I made my rounds talking to all my friends wishing them good luck before we head out on the course. All of the trail assail series start cross country race style, that means a gun goes off and your clock starts no matter if you did not start over the start line yet. You also usually start in a wide open field until you get to the trail path. I really enjoy this race start line because it makes a U- shape. So I typically can wave to my friends before we all separate into our running paces.

This race makes two 5k loops. So I tried to tell myself to settle down a little and control myself through this first loop. I think I did very well maintain my pace in the first three miles. People say this course is hilly but compared to Lapham I really see this course as a breeze. There is only one spot between mile 2- 2.5 and that I find to be a little difficult. I made it through Lap 1 and there were two girls around my pace. I typically don't race to be the best and am usually not competitive but for some reason today I just felt like being competitive.  I really dug deep in those last three miles, pushing up every hill. Hearing myself breathe- knowing deep down I was giving it my full effort. I would watch them walk or slow down on the hills and want to slow with them. I kept telling myself  "The only way you get stronger at running hills- is by running hills." 

As I approached the finish line my dad reached over giving me a high five- he had a big smirk on his face because he knew I raced 5 mins faster than what I told him I was going to. Seeing that smirk made this race worth it to me. After the emotional blow of last weeks race of feeling like not being there. I felt like maybe it was time to give up the running for a bit. But, today after finding the competitiveness inside of me and seeing the smirk from my dad I know my heart will always belong with running. Plus, my daughter looks pretty cute collecting race bling.