8 Seconds

I didn't meet my possibly unreasonable goal by 8 seconds in the Jingle Bell Jog. I finished at 31:09. I needed a time of 31:01 to meet my 9:59/mile goal. I guess I came in around 10:03/mile or so.

That course is really, really rough. Last time in September, I ran it in 33:27, but I was still a pretty new runner, coming off a vacation in Key West, and it was 80+ degrees. I beat that time by 2 minutes, 18 seconds.

Today the temp was hovering around 35 with light to not-so-light rain. I watched rain droplets drip from the bill of my baseball cap. The hills were horrible and I couldn't even make up the time much on the downhills because of the possibility of wiping out. I felt like I was running so slowly. My training partner sprinted ahead 1/4 mile into it and I just couldn't keep up. I battled a side stitch part of the way, knee pain, fatigue, and the elements. Not my best race!

I have to say my mind and my heart weren't in it today. I took three walk breaks in all---going up the steepest hills. My trainer had taught me to run slowly up them, but my attitude was bad today: "I hate this course. This weather stinks. This is the LONGEST three miles of my life. What mile am I even in? Another hill? YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!!" So I walked. I haven't had to walk on a 3-mile run in a long time.

I have to say I'm disappointed a little at my finish time. I've always met my goals in the past. I feel like I have a 9-minute mile in me somewhere. I know I have to take into account the conditions, but the condition of my mind and heart in the race was probably the deciding factor.