Spring has sprung in upstate New York! Well, at least on the race calendar, it has. The Skunk Cabbage race is always a harbinger of spring for me and I was excited to have this as the first race on my 2023 calendar.
I participated in Mithacal Milers workouts for a few months prior but I never really felt primed for speed. I chalked it up to lingering effects from the Philadelphia Marathon and aftermath of taking a month off from running. During that time, I mostly focused on cross-training, yoga, and weight training. And, there was the Syracuse Half Marathon coming up just two weeks after. I knew that if I raced a half marathon at Skunk, I’d likely suffer in Syracuse. So, Amy and I both dropped from our planned half marathon distance to the 10K.
The forecast warned of a colder morning (hey, it's been colder), but warm enough for me to wear shorts and my running mittens. It was really nice to warm up in Barton Hall again after being forced outside during the pandemic. We enjoyed visiting with friends and stretching before we were called to the start line.
In Barton Hall with Laurel and Amy
The first few miles of the race are a gradual uphill. I definitely felt this, and by the time I turned around for the return trip, I was felt pretty spent. I felt buoyed by seeing other runners coming my way, though, and shouted encouragement to those I knew. Around mile 4.5, when we started to go downhill again, I realized that I wasn’t “racing” per se, but felt like I was out for a training run. There was nobody in front of me to chase and nobody behind me to spur me on, so my only motivation was internal. I set an intention to pick up the pace for the last mile and ended up finishing strong.
Fairly alone at the finish line!
After catching my breath, I traded my wet shirt in the car for the dry (and very colorful) race shirt to get a photo with Amy after her finish (see photo at top).
By the Numbers
Place: 26/329 overall, 24/144 M, 4/9 Male 45-49