This year’s Old Fashioned 10 Miler was going to be about redemption. At least, that was the plan. Last year’s race went off the rails almost immediately. Despite not really training more for the distance (I’ve been on the bike a lot more this winter), I was determined that this year would be better than last. I did everything I could to make sure this year left me with better memories. I managed my taper, my fatigue, and my meds carefully in the lead up to Sunday. But you still never know. You gotta toe the line and find out.
One of the most frustrating things about being an athlete with Addison’s Disease is that sometimes you can do everything right leading up to a race, taper, stay hydrated, take your meds, and yet somehow your body chemistry still drifts off and you end up with a performance that is less than your best.
This is exactly what happened to me this past Sunday during the Old Fashioned 10 miler in Foxboro. I went out a little fast but not completely crazy, yet by mile 3 I was fighting an intense internal battle not to pull up and stop completely.
Here’s a free tip. The night before a half marathon don’t stick your face in a bucket of tabbouleh salad and eat till you’re stomach swells with bulgur and parsley. It won’t end well. There were some nervous moments in the hours leading up to the race and a few frantic twinges in the middle miles, but (spoiler) everything ended up ok and I actually had a pretty solid race in a unique twist to the annual Old Fashioned Ten Miler in Foxborough.
As you’d imagine, there are not a lot of mid-winter races in the Northeast, a couple, but not a lot. One local race that I’ve been trying to run for going on four years now is the Old Fashioned 10 Miler put on for the last 30 years by the Wampanoag Road Runners. It had never been canceled in it’s history until I signed up. Or so it seems. In the past three years, it’s been canceled twice due to snow storms and shortened to 5 miles due to icy road conditions.
This is the second year in a row I braced myself and signed up for a road race in February. And for the second year in a row, snow derailed the race. Last year, we had a snowstorm raging the day of the race and it was ultimately (and wisely) canceled. This year, we had a snowstorm the day (and night) before the race and, while it wasn’t canceled, it was significantly altered. The Old Fashioned Ten Miler turned into the Old Fashioned Sorta Five Miler. Still, the opportunities to race in January and February are pretty slim in New England and you have to take what you can get.