My last three races were marathons. MARATHONS! They were Philly in November of '08, The Watchung Winter Ultra in January '09 (in which I fell and broke my rib), and Boston in April '09. The last time I ran a 5K it was the RVRR Summer Series #4 in August of '08. So I have been mentally and physically prepared for nothing but big distance runs for more than 6 months! I had two Tuesday track workouts in before this race, with two weeks of skipping them before this first XC race of '09.
So I ran this one on Tuesday night barefoot. Finished in 20:17 for 4th in the 45-49 age group. That time would have won 35-39 and 40-44! Also note, this race comes just 3 days after the Towpath "Train"ing Run where I ran 27.3 miles. (Perhaps I should not make an issue with that, because the winner of this XC race, Mike Dixon, ran the entire 34 miles of the D&R Towpath on that day.) I didn't feel like being barefoot slowed me down at all! I was surprised how I could run on the cinder path with no problem. I did use the grass next to the cinder as much as possible. My legs were definitely fatigued from the "Train"ing Run and my habitual lack of sleep. I did not have much strength up old Red Barn Hill, but I felt I was cruising the flats very comfortably.
I am feeling a little Achilles strain on the left side after the race. This may be because I have not done any fast running barefoot. My track workouts were in spikes for the fast parts. My average pace barefoot is 8:30-8:45 per mile. My pace was 6:32 for the race.
I ran in Mizuno road race shoes last night to give my Achilles a little rest. I need a day off.
The next RVRR Summer Series race is June 23rd, in two weeks, and it is my birthday party!