November 16th, 2013, marked the day of the annual Claus Cause run. This is another great event hosted by Runner’s Soul, and along with picking up your race registration, you are asked to bring non-perishable food items in for donation to Lethbridge Food Bank. Upon trading my boxes of granola bars in at packet pickup, I received my bib and an awesome Claus Cause Buff! This was a nice takeaway from a race, considering we all have too many race t-shirts to count!
The event had both a 5km and 10km, which started at 9:00 am down at Fort Whoop Up. The 10km route would just be the 5 km twice, which was just fine as it was relatively flat. The only challenge with this course, which I have mentioned before in previous posts, is that the curviness of the paths can sometime pose to be a mental problem.
The weather was very overcast at race start, but perfect temperatures considering it was mid November. My husband kept telling me it was supposed to snow, but I chose to ignore him. As everyone got set for the mass start of the 5km and 10km, Erin from Runner’s Soul made some announcements. When she started talking about people to watch in each event, it came to my surprise when she said “…in the women’s 10km, watch strong local runner Andrea Lammers-Pottage…” I looked at my husband, but I don’t think he knew what my face was thinking…..holy crap, now I have to do my best.
I went out pretty fast, as I knew the first loop of the route would be more competitive, since the 5km was at the same time. There were 177 runners in the 5km and 86 in the 10km, so if I wanted to be with a pack of people I needed to stay near the front now. As I made my first lap, I felt strong. I could do that same pace again! I was at this time in the lead for the female 10km racers.
I had more motivation than a normal 10km since this would be my last 10km race of the year. If I wanted to PR, now was the time. And my friend Lauren from back in Wisconsin had bet me if I ran faster than 46 minutes (my personal best was 46:32 at the time) she would donate $46 to American Heart Association.
I had one mile left and I knew my pace was on to beat the 46 minutes, but it would be close. I just kept trying to keep those legs moving around the curve before Whoop Up, and once I saw the finish in the distance I couldn’t slow down. I came in with a personal best time of 45:37, and had kept my first place position for women!
When I finished, I felt so elated and just happy to have done it. It started to sink in I had earned another personal best, and then I realized that over the course of a little over a year, I had been able to drop my 10km race time from 50:27 to 45:37…..about 5 minutes have been knocked off! And of course, I have in my mind I can break 45, given if I have someone right in front of me as a pace bunny the whole time!
So that snow Dan mentioned? Well, it conveniently arrived about an hour or so after race start. By award time, the snow was pounding down and it had gotten cold! The pictures are hysterical because it looks like I am in two different events, but it proves to be an amusing time lapse.
I have one more race this year, a 5km Santa Shuffle, in two weeks. I just registered for it, and while this Claus Cause was suppose to be last, I need to find something between then and Dopey in January! What else will I be doing until the Dopey Challenge? Well, other than getting the mileage in and doing four days in a row of buildup to mimic Dopey. I needed a race In-between to keep me competitive. And if you are in Lethbridge, look for me on the roads today and wave—At 2:00 today I am heading out on a 14 mile tour of the Westside of Lethbridge, and it looks like by then weather will be pretty solid, with a temperature of 37 F and clear skies.