Monday was the Stratton Faxon 20k up in New Haven - honestly, my best distance run of the season! Temps were perfect, not too hot, no humidity, no rain! I couldn't have asked for a better day!
I had been looking into this race and I have to say it's my new favorite. I got a chance to spend some time with my BF and her kids which was great and got to run in a totally new environment. I now fully understand people who dream of running marathons/races in all 50 states. I met some great people, learned about other people's struggles - a guy who was running with a team was in the throes of cancer...totally tear jerker as they were calling his name as he crossed the finish. I met a woman who thought she broke her ankle but was walking on it anyway...I have to say, running the 2 half marathons in NYC have been more of a solo experience, this was so different.
The spectators were also really awesome. We were running through some poorer areas, where I'm guessing many people don't run through...the people that lived there were by far the most enthusiastic...having their own cheer sections and water stops. It was great! I felt a real sense of community, which is one of the main things I love about running. One of the best water stations was on Elm street, the whole block was out, almost forming a little tunnel - people on both sides of the street with water and some of the funniest signs I have seen in a while.
The run itself was a little hilly, I think they bill it as "flat and fast" - not so sure about that. There were about 3 or 4 hills, nothing to write home about, but certainly not flat (2 of them were actually legit hills). A bunch of bands on course as well as bagpipers around mile 10 or 11. And a Gu station, with plenty of Gu...they really stocked up!!
For me, this was by far my best run in awhile. I maintained a consistent pace and did not walk at all, I did slow down at the water stops, but I was consistent and I felt great. I also managed a blister free (for the most part) run!! Thank you Wright Socks!!! I ALWAYS get gnarly blisters on the tips of my second toes and the ball of my foot. I glide, have proper fitting sneaks and socks....it's terrible! Not so with the Wright Socks. My second toes were a little tender, but not nearly as bad as usual....yay for double layer blister protection!!
So for the official stats:
Date: Sept 7, 2009
Pace: 10:17 (I'll take it)