by Jeff Walker
Wow. Another stunning day to race. We’ve had a very hot summer/fall but have been extremely lucky on our race days. Twin Brook doesn’t get any better than this.
Given my marathon Sunday, I was unsure if I’d race. I took Monday-Thursday off and ran an easy 5 miles Friday. Marathon recovery went well. By Wednesday I had no soreness although I had calf soreness during my friday run. I had decided to race The Craig Cup by Thursday and Friday’s run confirmed the decision.
My PR on the course is 19:36ish. I thought I was in sub19 shape but given my marathon training (with no speedwork) and marathon, my goal was a PR 19:30. For those that have not run this course, Twin Brook is about 1:00 – 1:30 slower than a fast road 5K. Many people run it closer to 2 minutes slower. The first mile is a race killer. The last mile is a pace killer. I thought I would run a 6:20 first mile, then 6:15, then see if I could just hang on.
Bam! 6:19 first mile. I didn’t even use my watch! I thought by the end of this mile that I had zero chance of running 19:30. But then, Bam! 6:14 2nd mile, again no watch (ok I peeked at the half-way mark, which only I knew). Now I had all those thoughts of ok I’m cooked. I cannot hang on to this pace. But there’s only 1 mile left… If I can just…Bam! 6:04 3rd mile. OK hang on, it’s a slight downhill 0.1 mile and Bam! 18:58. Sweet!
Props to Matt Lunt for taking home The Cup! Thanks to Blaine for the beautiful pictures and to Jamie, Ryan, Val, Rick, Kate, Dave Howard, and Cacky for all of the race day help (although there was a lot less than I’d thought I needed thanks to USATF Maine).