Great race yesterday. No wind, flat course, cool temps. It was held in downtown Reading; the start was near the RACC campus. The student center was open for registration, which meant access to bathrooms and water fountains.
I arrived about an hour early, and began my normal warm-up procedure including a 1.5-mile run. My goal was to go under 19:00, but I felt a little sluggish. The race went off at 10:00, and I went out at a fast pace, and found myself in the top ten. I hit the first mile at 5:40, and actually felt good. After mile 1, another runner passed me, and that was the last person to pass me. I had another runner about 5 yards in front of me that I kept my sights on, but I never was able to close the gap. My paced dropped off a little by mile 2, but I was able to hang on the last mile and finished in 18:48, which was: 12 below my goal. The finish was a little tough. I like a long straight, which gives me a clear view to the line. This finish passed the original start then made 3 hard lefts to the line.
18:48 ties my PR from two years ago, which made this race special. I still have room for improvement, and I’m still improving despite closing in on a half century. I was 7th overall in the race, and second in my age group (40-49). The runner in front of me beat me by :02 for the age group win.
After the race, I ran my cool-down with Curt M., who finished ahead of me, and Tim H., the guy who finished behind me, and who knocked me off in the last mile of the Kris Kringle race back in December. We also ran with the woman’s runner up, Katherine D. It’s always nice meeting new runners and sharing the camaraderie.
The timing and direction of this race was superb, and the course was nice except, like I stated earlier, the finish was funky. Nonetheless, I highly recommend it.