|Joining Jill this morning|
Happy Saturday! I hope everyone (well, my American readers) had a wonderful 4th July, and you were as lucky as we were in Michigan to have an absolutely perfect day weather wise. I ended up in Holland, MI at the beach, and it was beautiful. I may complain about Michigan more than I should, but it was gorgeous by the beach, truly Pure Michigan, and it reminded me just how nice it is here in the summer.
Yesterday I jump started my body back into workouts by racing in the Hanover Firecracker 5 mile. On Thursday evening I traveled down to Manchester, MI to stay with some friends to prevent a 3 hour drive the morning of the race.
Arriving at the event by 6:30am (for the 8am start), it was very quiet in the village, the complete opposite to my last race in Brooklyn, NY. At 8am in perfect conditions the race started, and off we went on a 5 mile loop around Hanover. I had only run the first mile of the course on my warm up, so was not sure what to expect, but I was warned it involved quite a few decent hills, and was considered a rolling course.
I had intended on looking at my watch once between 800m-1 mile in, and then ignoring it the rest of the way, but I decided to just trust my instincts, and did not look at my Garmin until 4.5 miles in (and that was just to see how long I had left). I was conservative through 3 miles, and I felt great, the best I have felt in over 3 months in anything! I felt smooth, relaxed, and strong; a wonderful feeling after struggling through my last few months of training, and especially after no workouts to date.
I finished in 28:57 (5:48 pace), winning $100, a Meckley’s Apple Pie, and a VERY American Plaque.
I would say that was a pretty good start for my training segment. I raced it to see where I am at, and I learned that I really do race the best when I just run by feel; not worrying about hitting a certain pace, or about who is going to be looking at the results afterwards. I also enjoyed this race more than I usually enjoy races. I had a ton of fun running through the village, and picking people off as the race went by; I felt very controlled until about 600m to go.
Walking around after the finish, it seemed that everyone knew my name, everyone knew my history, and I felt like a little celebrity, which was a nice feeling, to be expected in a small village. They obviously put a lot of thought into this event, and I thought it was a great race to do (if anyone is near Hanover, MI around July 4). I was also interviewed (and called a world-class competitor 🙂 in the write up) after the race. If you are interested, the race review is HERE.
|One thing I am focusing on more this segment; stretching|
I am going to race again at the end of the month, maybe even before that…..
After the race, stretching and fueling were the number one priorities. I stretched as I waited for awards, and then we went off to find food. We ended up at Sophia’s House of Pancakes, a place I have heard about, and seen billboards for many times. I was presented with a HUGE menu, and the largest breakfast I have ever seen in my life; another truly American component of my day.
|5 egg Spinach and Feta Omlette, and Two Pancakes|
After I was stuffed to the brim, having eaten almost all that food, we headed to Holland Beach. It took a long time to find parking, as it seemed everyone had the same idea; unsurprising, as it was a perfect 78 degrees, with a beautiful blue sky. Eventually, we made it to the beach, and spent the rest of the day there. A fantastic 4th July, and realized how lucky I am to be in this wonderful country. Thank you for having me, America 🙂
With my pre race breakfast, the HUGE one at Sophias, Ice Cream, and a burger and fries in my belly, you would think I would be stuffed until next Tuesday, but I was curious what the pie tasted like, so upon return, I tried it out…..with a fork…..hey, don’t judge 😉 It was AMAZING, honestly one of the best pies I have ever had. If you can get a pie from Meckleys farm, do it. I am not even a pie person….I have a feeling that won’t make it a few days!
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