This was the first year I ran this race and I loved it! Granted I feel like the weather this February was a fluke compared to past years so I was probably spoiled. Anyway, this race sells out really quickly. It is capped at 1,000 runners but it’s also only 25 dollars so I figured why not give it a try!
I went in thinking the course was going to be full of hills and I would just do the lower end of my tempo pace and keep it relaxed. My best races seem to happen when I don’t plan to race at all, like today. I am just relaxed and enjoying the run. The scenery, the crowds, the fellow runners, everything.
The race started at 9:45 so I got there early around 8:30 because I wanted to try to get in some warm up miles to reach my 18 for the day. I ended up running three easy miles on the track before then headed to the start 15 minutes later. I still hadn’t decided if I wanted to race or just do a tempo as planned 7:30-7:50 range.
The gun went off and I decided to keep it easy which I would have done for the first mile or so regardless. The first two miles had a lot of downhills so I had to keep my pace in check and ran around 7:40’s. I would say until mile five there were rolling hills but nothing crazy. I like courses like this though I think hills are one of my strengths.
I crossed the half at around 37 minutes and realized it I ran the second half the same pace I would get my PR. Granted I have only run two ten mile races including this one, so a PR is more likely. I decided to pick it up the second half, keep it pretty comfortable until the last two miles.
I thought the last two miles were going to be sight uphill but it wasn’t bad at all. I would say there wasn’t a hill until around the last half mile and after that you are basically at the finish. My last two miles ended up being 7:06 and 6:38!! I finished in 1:12:56 which is a new PR by at least a minute.
The best part is, it was comfortable for me and I definitely had more left. I still felt like I didn’t race it so I am super excited to see what I can do with shorter distances when I take a break from marathons. In the meantime I can’t wait to see what Napa has in store for me.