The Muddy Trails 5K has been held the last couple of years locally in conjunction with a crawfish festival, this year was the first year that they have offered a 10K race option...and I jumped at the chance to take on my old 10K PR.
This is an evening race, with a 5:30 P.M. start time. It was fairly warm and a bit humid at the start. I wanted to beat my previous PR of 1:16:45 (from 2007) which I figure I should easily be able to do, but I also did not want to run so hard that I would have an extended recovery which can take away from the last of my Lone Star 70.3 training this month, so my goal was to finish somewhere around 1:12:00. I also ran this race without my Garmin as I wanted to see how I would run without relying on it as a gauge of my pace.
Most of the first mile was on the road before the course turned onto the nature preserve trails. The 10K course had an extra out and back, plus a loop portion, before merging back in with the 5K course. My first mile went by in about 10:20, which is faster than I had planned to run. I was able to slow a bit but still ran mile 2 in about 11:00. The third mile went by in 10:40, putting me at 32:00 at that point. At this point I knew I was comfortably ahead of a PR and I concentrated on a pace that was not quite an easy pace, but was still comfortable to maintain. Somewhere after mile 4 we merged into the 5K race path and I was passing a few stragglers/walkers doing that race (the 5K started 10 minutes after the 10K). Right before hitting mile 6 we ran down and back up a large drainage ditch [whose idea was this anyway!]. I hit mile 6 right around 66 minutes into the race and I ran in comfortably to finish in 1:08:25 for an 8:20 PR! I feel like I ran over my head for pretty much this whole race, but was glad to set a big PR while also knowing that under other circumstances I could beat that time again.
The race did have a bit of controversy as the 3 leading male runners were apparently pointed the wrong way on one part of the course. After a post-race conference with the top two male finishers, it was determined to declare these other runners as the overall male winner, male master's winner and an age group winner, after the top finishing runners agreed these other runners would have won if they had stayed on the proper course. I avoided any race controversy by finishing 29th in my age group.
Now it's time to concentrate on finishing my training for the Lone Star 70.3 coming up on April 25th. That will be a long, but hopefully rewarding, day.