After completing yesterday’s half marathon, the starting order for today’s stage was made based on the finishing times. The person with the slowest time from yesterday started first and the person with the fastest time started last, with each runner starting 1 minute after the last.
I started 11th today. I had some issues with my Garmin this morning, and as I walked up to the start line, I turned it on again (was trying to save battery life as it told me it was low earlier) and it shut right off again, I tried again, and it did the same, so I took the watch off and ran without. I always run with a Garmin, so I was a bit concerned how this would work out… would I go out too fast? Would I end up trying to run TOO conservative and not be able to get up to the paces I wanted to run? I guess time would tell.
As I headed from the start line, I held back and made sure I didn’t feel like I was doing anything all that “hard” at this point, I wasn’t going to try to pass anyone in this first stretch before the turn, just over 2km down the road. I felt good, and passed my first competitor (Susan) at around the 4km mark (I think) [Edit: Susan has informed me that it was not until 5K :)]. At this point, I decided that I was going to count how many people I passed and how many passed me. It was a while before I caught anyone else, but starting around 6km, I managed to start catching up with some more people. I kept counting as I ran along.
When I turned around the final corner, with just over 2km to go to the finish line, I had passed 9 and I realized that I had not been passed by a single Ultimate competitor and thought maybe just maybe, I could be the first Ultimate to cross the line (this of course does not make me finish the stage in the fastest time, but would feel pretty darn good). Just after I had that thought, Jack passed me. I was passed by another with 1 km to go, but I did manage to be the first girl to cross the line (ultimate or otherwise) and I managed to pass every single person who started ahead of me! I was very happy with that and very happy with my race overall. I finished in 1:13 and some seconds that I’m not sure about (I will update this when the results are posted), which was 6 minutes faster than my previous best time on this stage 2 years ago.
Running without a Garmin was different and, surprisingly, it felt really good. I think the time trial format helped out because I wasn’t alone on the course without anyone around me, I had people I wanted to catch and I had people that I did not want to catch me. I don’t think I’m going to give up the Garmin, but I will think about running without it from time to time.
After the race was over, it was time for some fluids, food, massage, the pool, and results. The gold jersey will be worn by Stefan tomorrow for the men and Catherine maintains her overall 1st place position and will wear the gold jersey for the women.
As always, it was an enjoyable post-race experience. I had a great time at this morning’s stage. I look forward to Stage 3 at Bechtel Park with the good weather forecast. It will be a nice change from the rain last year and the year before. I should now go knock on some wood to make sure I didn’t jinx anything.
Great race everyone! See you tonight for some sushi and tomorrow for another stage of the 2013 ENDURrun.