A couple weeks ago, Ryan was searching for a flat race and stumbled upon the Hop For Hope 10K. The race was in the Akron area but listed as flat so it sounded like a winner. Ryan signed up right away but I waited to make sure my leg wouldn’t give me any issues. I eventually signed up the week of the race as I was pretty confident I could run it.
The day of the race was a little colder than I had expected. We had such nice temperatures during the week that I was surprised at the 35 degree temps for the race. While driving to the race, I was seeing a lot of hills. Looking back, I guess this was a flat race…by Akron standards.
Luckily, we were able to drive the course on the way to the race so I was able to see what these hills were like. I also warmed up on the course so I got to feel the last .75 of the race so I knew what to look forward to.
This race had a 5K and a 10K so at the start I had to tell myself to be careful and not go out too fast. I had a plan to PR so I was determined to stick to my plan and my pace of about a 7:10 pace. However, early on I was in 4th female overall place and didn’t even know if the other women ahead of me were in the 5K or 10K.
As we neared the 5K turnaround, I passed 1 girl and was closing in on the second when the second girl turned. Phew, only had 1 more to catch. Sadly, the next girl was so far in front of me that I couldn’t even see her!
However, I didn’t know how close the next girl was to me so I kept my pace and kept pushing. When I reached the 10K turnaround, I could see the girl in first was so far ahead that unless she started walking, there was no way I was going to catch her. It looked like I had a pretty solid second place position but I had no idea if I would die out on the way back or if someone behind be would just negative split the entire second part of the course so I picked up the pace.
As I got close to the finish line, I started to feel sick to my stomach but was hoping if I didn’t kick at the end of the race that I wouldn’t puke. I literally did not kick at all to end the race and as I saw the clock I figured they started the clocks late because a 43:45 sounded crazy fast. I was hoping for a 44:30.
After hounding everyone to find out the distance of the race according to their watches, I found the course could be anywhere from a 6.12-6.2. I decided to add some time to my finish time and call it a 44:30 just in case the course was short. So it’s still a PR! It will be interesting to see how I run in the next 10K I sign up for. I am definitely itching to race another one now to see if I run in the 43’s again!