Coming off a great CF climb, my expectations for the milwaukee climb were not as high. I would not have gone--i didn't entirely feel up to it--but three other racers were carpoooling from chicago, and i didn't want to miss the opportunity to hang with them.
It was an evenign climb, so i went to work, did my day, then headed to the north side of chicago. We hung out at jesse's house for awhile, before piling into his van and heading up to chicago.
I don't know what i messed up, but i did not show up to the race feeling well. Perhaps i had hydrated incorrectly, or messed up my diet, not slept well, or i was just tired from races/training. Probably all these were factors. But at the race, i felt tired, sore, and a little feverish. We got there pretty early, so i had time to warm up/hydrate, etc. Nothing seemed to work, so when i lined up, i did my best to pump myself up, but my body didn't feel ready.
I slid back in the line until i felt i was in a decent spot. The people behind me ha done sears tower a bit slower, but i felt less confident about this race. Soon we were going, it was my turn after a few minutes, and i was sent up!
Not being sure about the layout, i pushed at a decent pace. I had a timing track that aimed to get me to the top in the low sixes. We started 4 floors below the street, and i got to ground floor in good time, and to the 5th floor in time as well, but my legs were hurting. I didn't seem to have recovered from 300N.
I backed off a bit to what i thought i could maintain. That meant every 5 or so floors i fell a floor behind where i wanted to be. I began to worry that someone from behind was going to catch me, even with the big timing gaps we had been given. That pushed me a little, which stopped me from sliding any more. Somehow, at one point, i thought i only had 10 floors left, and felt good, so i picked up the pace, then realized, after i felt kinda burned out, i had 20 floors left when i'd made my mistake, so i had to back off even more.
But soon i was on 37, and i sprinted up the last 5. I sat down and felt crappy, physically, about my race, about how i'd prepared that day. Sure, it was my first time in that building, and i had a bunch of fairly valid excuses, but i still could have done a lot better.
Downstairs, i saw my time was 7:32, nothing at all special. My teammates had gone 1-2-3 and i felt kinda bad i hadn't been able to complete the carpool sweep. There wasn't much food at the buffet for me, so i had 2 beers, and felt even crappier later.
In the end, i think my big lesson from this race is my overall base fitness needs to be higher, and when i have races close like this, i need to work more on recovery between. I probably did part of the damage with 2 long runs the week before 300N even though i did fine in that race. I also didn't eat right after those as well.
Details matter, and recovery is a big detail!
I am glad i have no more races until mid-january! In the meantime, i'm going to train hard and eat well in hopes of a good race season!