Thursday, December 10, 2015

Li'l Rhody Runaround 2015

Official time: 56:40.  26th overall.  6th in Age Group.  Results here.

The Li’l Rhody Runaround has always been a signature trail race in Rhode Island for a lot of people, though it’s often been less than successful for me.  I rolled my ankle badly one year and last year I bowed out with knee problems.  This year I pulled the trigger on the RI 6 Hour Ultra that was scheduled for the week prior.  That race went great but I knew that I was essentially giving up a chance of success at Li’l Rhody in doing so.

It had been a slow recovery from the 6 Hour.  For the first few days I was visibly sore but by Sunday I was feeling alright.  Amanda decided at the last minute to join the race and that was good to see.  We got there with plenty of time to chat up the usual suspects.  After a short warm-up a sea of orange shirts lined up and we were off. 

And we're off! - Photo by Scott Mason

I tried to reign it in but the race goes out fast.  I did my best to keep my pace in check.  Matt Walker didn’t go by me for a ½ mile which had me concerned.  Turns out he had a strategy in place – a sound one which would net him third place. By the time we reached the playground the pace felt hard and I wondered how long I would hold on. 

Past the camp I led a couple guys who remarked that I looked strong.  Ha!  Saw Nate V cheering us on near Buckeye Brook Rd which was appreciated.  But at mile 3 there’s a small climb and my legs immediately felt tired.  My pace slowed and a series of runners began to pass me.  That was pretty much it.  With sore legs and my pace slowing I had little desire to hang on and gut it out.  From that point I took it easy and didn’t push myself on the run.  I finished about four minutes slower than two years ago.

Props to Matthew Walker for an impressive 3rd place finish.  He’s a demon now.  And shame on the bandit who pushed the pace with front runners Greg Hammett and Bronson Venable.  So a lackluster performance for me but I expected it a week removed from the 6 Hour so I'm not bummed.  Next weekend brings the race trilogy to a close with the Mews Tavern 6.9k.  We'll see how that goes!

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