In honor of my man Mo Farah, double Olympic Gold Medalist in the 5,000 & 10,000m, and my new running inspiration, (after some needling by my UNH alumni racing crew) I decided finally to enter and run the famous Saunders at Rye Harbor 10K last week. Take it from me, as advertised, this race is truly a Seacoast classic.
For better or worse, here’s the play-by-play (mile by mile) of the race, my first time running this historic Seacoast 10K road race at Rye Harbor. My plan was to channel Mo Farah’s Olympic magic in this race. I have not run more than a few 5K’s this summer, so the 10K distance was going to be a good challenge for me, but I was feeling up for it and ready to run the 10K like Mo Farah. My goal: Break 50:00 and beat old man Hasselhoff.
Seacoast Race Re-cap: The 2012 Saunders at Rye Harbor 10K (6.2 miles)
- Date: Thursday, August 16th
- Race Time: 6:00pm
- Location: Rye Harbor, NH (across from the former site of Saunders)
- Weather: Hot & really, really humid. It’s swamp-like. Wait… here come the dark clouds… OK, it just downpoured hard for 10 minutes. It might just cool things off. Hey, now there’s a rainbow over Rye Harbor Beach. Love it… still really muggy though. Time to pound some more Gatorade and GU gel.
- Mile 1: AND we are off! It’s hot & humid and the starting gun went off while I was chatting up a couple of friends… I am so not ready. I forgot my iPod too. Oh well. Time to run. Let’s roll out!
- Mile 2: Oops, got to mile 2 and figured out I was flying, just like my man Mo, and went out way too fast (7:20 pace). Not good. I was hurting already. I am built for 5Ks after all… OK, just breathe and slow down! THANKS to the kid with the hose to cool us all off. You rock!
- Mile 3: Still paying for the fast first mile and I am keeping up a fast pace on mile 2 for some reason too. Mo, NOT NOW! I’m hurtin for certain now and the humidity just picked up. Breathing is not good. Too hot! I am sweating through dry fit like a gorilla in a gorilla suit… OK, gotta remember my ABC’s (attitude, breathing and cadence [stride length]). Attitude – check. Breathing – get it together! Cadence – take smaller steps and find the pace. OK, ABCs are good… I am better now! I got me some Mo-mentum now. High-fived some cool kids at the water stop!
- Mile 4: Ok, now back to a normal-ish pace and I found a pace buddy to run with. We are working the hills in downtown Rye together. She does not know this, but we are a team, just like Mo Farah and Galen Rupp in the Olympics. She completes me. Thank you pace lady in pink racing top! You got me through those hills… But hey where is the 5 mile marker? Oh-oh, starting to fade a bit. This is the longest mile in race history. I want a measurement!… Whew hello mile 5. It’s about time!
- Mile 5: Ok, the force is with me now. Mo is talking to me. I have Mo’s race Mo-jo now…. I feel good, loose, got through the rolling hills of Rye, ABC’s are great. I am going after it. We are back on Ocean Blvd. and headed back around the corner to Rye Harbor. Feelin good. Beautiful night for a run along the ocean. I love the Seacoast and sunset runs. Sub 50:00 here I come….
- Mile 6.2: Hey, two guys just passed me. What the? Oh, it’s on now! I need to catch them by Rye Harbor and sprint around the corner to the finish line… Damn I can’t read my watch, it’s all foggy. How close am I? What’s my time? Mo, where are you? Inspire me… I see the finish line. Time to shift to another sprinting gear, vroom, vroom! Yep, smoked those two guys and flew through the finish! Wait is that clock right? Oh, no Mo, say it ain’t so….
- My Saunders 10K results: Finished 254/803, ran 8:12 pace, BUT didn’t break 50:00. *OFFICIAL TIME – 51:12.
Well, maybe I will channel my inner Mo Farah in my next 5K race this fall on the Seacoast. Still, I had a blast at 2012 Saunders 10K at Rye Harbor and loved this 10K course in Rye curling back to the beach. I think this might turn into an annual summer ritual for me and my crew. It was a great workout too.
OK time to grab some fruit (they have watermelon – awesome!), snacks, Gatorades, and then head over to the “refreshment tent” to re-carb a bit with my UNH alumni crew. We are all feeling good and as my boy Jeff says, “we killed it!” It’s a beautiful summer night in Rye. Good times staying fit and having fun with good friends on the Seacoast. What could be better? Just another perfect Seacoast summer night… Next year I’ll break 50:00 and make my man Mo proud.