This weekend I ran at Seneca Falls, NY on Saturday for a 4:40 pm 5k start time. It is the annual It's a Wonderful Life 5k, named from the classic movie where you start on the bridge where the movie is filmed. I drove up early around 12:30 pm up to the Finger Lakes region as it was a nice easy 1 hour and 20 minute drive. I headed up along the hill and dell to Skaneateles, NY one of the fancy-est finger lake towns around. As I entered the town center, the place was humming with shoppers and people were being driven along on horse and buggy. It was big-time there. I felt like I was truly in Upstate New York village what I had imagined the state to primarily be like. It was a great trip! I had the chance to see a really festive part of Upstate New York and the Finger Lakes region is amazing. Auburn was really cool with its Bass Pro Shop and Seneca Falls was so festive and quaint. I arrived around 2pm and then spent my time running around town taking photos that will be up later. It is amazing that almost 3-4 thousand people showed up for a 5k. Definitely the largest 5k I have ever been apart of. I had lunch at a nearby subway. Then jogged around. I checked in at the Community Center then headed out into town and along the Erie Canal pathway along the river. I was so excited to see such Christmas Spirit that I maybe jogged about 8 miles before the start time, maybe a reason for tightening up at the finish.
As the race began to grow, the excitement was there. I was determined to take first place. I really wanted that 100 dollar first place prize for Ashlee's gift. The Christmas lights were beginning to come alive as 4pm was here 40 more minutes. I began to jog around in my race attire and then head to the starting line. It was packed with people. Near 4:40, I hoped to squeeze right at the front of the race but of course more knuckleheads kept on getting in the way so I was about 3 people deep, which was okay considering I got out fine and everyone's body-warmth was nice too. The race gun went off and we were on our way. The pace was fast from the gun as a pack of about 5 people were apparent. I tucked into the group and just relaxed. I knew that this race would come down to a smart tactical kick. We ran across the second bridge and then hit the mile marker. 4:51. A very honest pace. At this point, I was in the lead with the third place finisher. We worked together really well and I had a great amount of energy in my stride. I was just striding along no problem. Then I continued to push the pace. It was really nice to see all of the Christmas lights of the town and the festive people along the route cheering and blasting Christmas music. Back to the race. Myself and the eventual winner separated ourselves at the 2 mile marker. We crossed the line in 9:43 which equates to a 4:52 second mile. I could tell the pace was wearing on the guy. At this point I made a move, a big one. I looked to drop him. He held on pretty well as he made a counter-move at 2.5 miles. I thought ok, let me think you have me so I tucked behind him. Once we hit the downtown, I knew about a minute of the race was left. I was about maybe 2 seconds behind the lead Ohio guy and started kicking. I caught him right into the downtown as we were stride for stride. We were glaring at each other to see who had the most. At this point I went to wide on the road and WHAM!!! My right thigh, slammed against a pedestrian crossing sign. I tripped onto my hands and scattered along the road. I exclaimed a mean word and looked up at the Ohio guy who was sprinting all-out looking back at what had happened. I then bounced back up and then sprinted towards the finish. I ran about 15:24 for the 5k about 10-12 seconds behind the winner. I really wanted a win and felt I had run a sound race but second is not bad and losing to a 15:10 is fine with me.
I felt pretty sore already and just hung around the finishline then jogged to my car and back for the awards ceremony. I won 50 dollars, a sweet vase, and a bottle of wine-not too bad for one day. It was a nice effort and I know that 5k is not my most competitive event. Make it a trail race and then you have a different ball-game. I then drove home to the lovely Christmas lights of all the towns I passed through earlier. In the dark of the night, the lovely lights made the ride enjoyable.
Still Sore- Dec 9----I have run 70 at nighttime on Sunday did a loop out on Page Green Road, then over through Blodgett Mills Road over down Pendleton Road and back home. It was a serene experience to see Cortland all lit-up at nightime from such a high vista. Pretty cool. Really makes the town look like a nice gem of a place.
Monday---Dec 10---Run of 80 minutes and 13 miles out through Homer up along Highway 11 towards Tully. Ran to the lakes then headed back. It was a warm damp day but luckily no rain during the run. I am trying to get my body back to normal and I think sleep will make that work out!
Tues-Dec 11---Run out along 13 to Parks Road then to Mcgraw North. Ran some nice uphills it was warmer without the breeze than colder on the way back. I ran about 81 minutes and 13.67 miles. Felt really good going up and down considering I am tired from the stress of finishing up school and the lack of sleep. No snow, maybe a dusting up at the higher elevations.
Here is a video of the race taken from the race website: http://fingerlakes1.tv/program-wonderful-run.php