Race Around the Base
It is hard to believe that 2015 is almost over. The 6th Annual Race Around the Base 10 Miler marked my last official event for the year, and what a year it has been. I am proud to say I was able to log over 1,500 miles – not my initial goal, but still something I will build upon in 2016.
The race was hosted by Langley Air Force Base, which worked closely with the Peninsula Track Club (local organization) to host this annual community event. Langley Air Force Base is not open to the public except for events like this one and Airshows, so this was a welcome opportunity to join those who support us. The only problem is PTC runner are fast!
The 10 mile course provided a nice perspective for those who rarely have a chance to see the base. We met up at the fitness center to collect our swag bag and bibs. I must say this was very well organized and we were quickly processed. As we lined up at the start line, we were unsure if were going to run on the street or use the running path. The start line was undefined at first as traffic passed by us. Nonetheless, we all lined upon the road and patiently listened to the opening remarks and then safety briefing. Right at 0900 the air horn sounded and we were off and running. At this point the mercury started to creep towards 60* with a slight ocean breeze.
Before I had a chance to check my starting pace we were rounding our first turn by the static F-15. Starting in front of the pack might have been a bit of a mistake as my watch registered a 7:00 pace. Not surprised, as I typically start out too fast, but I get excited. My goal was to keep a pace around 8:15. As we were coming up on the first mile, the majority of the faster runners were in a single file line and pulling away quickly. As I looked down at my watch again, I knew I could not keep up the pace for much longer, but I also did not like the feeling of being passed by so many.
My pace started to settle out a bit as I crossed miles five and six (maybe it was exhaustion). Also, this is when we turned away from the water/breeze and really felt the 60* temperature. I would say mile seven was the toughest mile – knowing we had to make one more zigzag before entering the flight line area. This is where I able to pass a few people (boosting my spirits).
The end was in sight (not literally) once we hit the flight line. The buildings that lined the roads previously were replaced by fighter jets. On this day, we had the pleasure of seeing the French and British Air Force fighter jets along with our own F-22s.
Arriving at the finish line was welcome relief! My finish time was 1:21 beating my goal pace by 9 seconds. This secured my spot as the third finisher in my age group.
This race came at a perfect time to springboard my training to the next marathon (One City Marathon in March). Overall, I will plan to do this race again next year. The price is right and the swag is useful…small bag, sweat towel, aluminum water bottle.