(Me, all smiles having reached the top of Black Mountain. Photo By: Randy Atkinson)
When I first started "racing" or entering races, I used to start out pretty conservatively because I had no clue how to race as well as no expectations. I'd start out conservatively and then pick it up from there if I felt good, which I often did. AND I HAD A BLAST! I also performed well. Somewhere along the way however, I started to push a bit more from the start and co-incidentally this is around the time when racing became not as much fun. I have still done well but my mental state throughout the races has been pretty shitty.
My last 2 races, Knee Knacker 50km last weekend and 5 peaks 14km today (the following weekend) I started out fairly easy. In fact today, I seated myself in the 3rd heat which meant that I left the starting gates 1-2 minutes after the lead packs.When you start a bit further back, you don't get caught up in the pack. Also, sometimes you end up going a bit slower than normal and if the trail narrows and you get stuck behind people. This isn't such a bad thing at the beginning. If it's too painfully slow of course you politely pass and carry on. Today I just gained momentum and had legs to run every single hill. Pretty much everyone around me (men and women) were walking the ups and I wouldn't blame them, the trail was like stairs but for some reason I just didn't stop running. I eventually caught up to the lead female with 2 km to go and hammered it on home. Thanks "Money" for getting me into the race!
Woot Woot. Good luck to everyone racing this weekend. There's a lot of people both biking and running 100 miles!
See you on the trails!