What would bring me back to a 10k that has the word “hot” in the name of it? Good question! This is actually a very organized and fun, local race in Jonesboro. It was not on the Grand Prix schedule but it did offer some overall prize money which was just enough to lure me back. After mentioning it to John I decided to register since it was worth a shot. I also really wanted to see if I could beat my 10k time there from last year. In most 10k’s I can run 38 or 39- something but I’ve learned not to expect that in Jonesboro in August! This race combines heat and hills (and a course that tends to measure slightly long) so if I broke 40 minutes it would be a really good race. Last year I ran 40:14 there. I really hoped to break 40 this year but didn’t know what to expect 3 weeks out from a marathon.
John and I arrived in Jonesboro around 5:45 Saturday night. The kids were spending the night at my in-laws since we knew we’d be getting home late. The race didn’t start until 6:30 so I had plenty of time to check-in, warm-up, etc. I knew of another Little Rock runner I hoped to pace near. My goal was to run between 6:15-6:20 average which would get me under 40. I knew this would get more challenging on some of the middle miles with the hills but I hoped I could do it.
Mile 2- 6:19. Still feeling good but the hardest section was about to start.
Mile 3- 6:29. This was a tough mile but I pushed through and was actually glad to see sub 6:30.
Mile 4- 6:31. The first half of this mile was still uphill but I picked it up on the downhill the second half. I didn’t pick it up enough (was hoping for low 6:20’s) so I started to get discouraged on my time.
Mile 5- 6:22. This mile was better but still out of range. By this point I was following a lead pack of 3 guys. I stayed fairly close behind them but it was getting tough.
Mile 6- 6:41. I knew this would be the hardest mile of the entire race (A LOT) of uphill and I was ready to be done!
Mile 6.32- 6:15 pace.
I’ll probably do this one again next year so I can try for sub 40 one more time. I know I have it in me but it will take a good race and 3 weeks post marathon is not ideal. I did enjoy having a date night with John (we went to dinner afterwards) and the prize money was also a very nice bonus. ($200!) Until next time Jonesboro….