On April 21st (I’m just a little behind…) hubs and I ran the Uxbridge “Run for the Diamond” Half Marathon hosted at Wooden Sticks Golf Club.
I first ran this race in 2011 during what I like to call my “hay day”, where I ran a 1:46 on this grueling course even after a 6 mile “warm-up.” Those were the days…. As I’ve said before, it can be hard to check the ego and return to races where I’ve been successful in the past, since I am running much slower at the moment. That being said, I was really looking forward to running it this year since it is such a
challenging beautiful, varied course and I thought it would be a great way to have some fun with a long run.
It was great to see Robin when we went inside to pick up our race kits. We got organized back at the car and then hubs and I set out to run 6K before the race, in an effort to continue building up our long run distance. We headed to a trail that we remembered using last time, but sadly it was closed for bridge re-construction. We ended up doing a simple out-and-back on the streets in town.
We made it back in time for a quick wardrobe change (it was a cold morning, but warming up in the sun) and potty break before lining up to start. I always enjoy this small, low-key races where you can wander up to the start line just before the gun. After a couple of minutes, we were off!
I remembered the course being broken down into three distinct parts – the country roads (with some notable hills), the trails through the woods, and finally the golf cart paths. The entire route is very challenging overall. It’s almost impossible to settle into a pace, but the mixed terrain and scenery definitely helped keep things interesting.
I had planned to run the race right around my typical long run pace, although that effort felt quite a bit harder given the hills. I ended up having one of those races where I went from feeling really good to really tired to really good and so on almost the entire time. I ran mostly solo and zoned out with music, tackling one section of the course at a time. It breaks down into almost even thirds from roads to trails to paths, so it was a great way to separate the distance mentally.
I had deja vu of the Angus Glen 10-Miler a few weeks ago as we started hitting the toughest hills of the day in the last few miles. I had to walk a few times, and when I was running it often felt like I was doing so at a walking pace anyway. Oof!
Finally, the finish line. I was content with a 2:02, as was hubs with his 1:42 (he is on the comeback trail from an injury that benched him August through January). I got to see Robin again at the finish line and congratulate her on a PR finish. Way to go, Robin!
It was a great day overall and I’d love to run the race again – I definitely recommend it if you’re looking for a challenge or something a little different.
Chip time: 2:02:00