My runs this week were as follows:
Tuesday: 8 miles at 8:51/mile pace
Wednesday: 4 miles at 8:39/mile pace
Thursday: 8 miles at 8:51/mile pace
These paces are all assuming a flat, road run, which none were. So my splits on the 8 milers were somewhere in the 9:20 range. As for the 4 miler...uhhh...
See, it started out mellow enough: I arrived at the trail with plans to run an out and back of 4 miles. Then, she came whizzing past me as I locked my car. She being a 40 something woman in amazing shape, cruising by and uphill at a pace I assumed was somewhere in the neighborhood of my proposed pace.
So I gave chase. And then realized that she was somewhere in sub 8 minute miles. Naturally, I slowed and backed off, reminding myself that my pace was to be about 1 minute/mile slower than muscley, fit woman's trotting pace.
KIDDING I PASSED HER AND KEPT UP THE PACE FOR ANOTHER 3 MILES AND RAN 7:18/MILES
It's this competitive side of myself I'm nurturing. In a previous entry, I talked about how even in kindergarten I was non-competitive. It's time for this to change.
In the sport of ultra running, I've gotten quite used to the fact that yes, while I'm fast in big distances, I'll likely never finish in the top 10% of the pack, so I've grown content at hanging somewhere in the top 25% of finishers and having fun in the outdoors with the other crazies. But somewhere within those confines, I have to remind myself that it's totally acceptable to "compete" against others. It doesn't take away from the other elements of the sport that I enjoy. It adds to them.