Return to Wyola

A week after running a half marathon in Annapolis I returned to one of my favorite local races and places for the third year in a row. The Lake Wyola Road Race is in its 33rd year. It’s a small race with a challenging course that circles the lake. The route is pretty and peaceful. There are a handful of spectators along the way and two water stops on the 4.8 mile course. I recognized a number of faces this year though I actually know no one running.

The Lake Wyola 2012 race was not a great experience for me. My time was slower than my first race at Wyola in 2011. So I was determined to make this year better despite the fact that I was working the night before again. Since my husband was home on Saturday I was able to get to bed about an hour earlier than usual. This was huge for me. I felt rested and refreshed throughout the night at work. I made sure to drink lots of water at work and kept to only one cup of coffee at the beginning of the shift because I wanted to be well hydrated for the race. On the way to the race I drank an 8 oz. coconut water. This year I ate my typical pre-race meal of banana, peanut butter and some kind of bread which just so happened to be a whole grain sandwich thin.

My running has been going well. I have been doing more hill training, weight training and core work. I was determined to power up the hill that graces the first half of the course. I had a plan to run the whole hill at a steady pace, slow and steady wins the race right? My plan worked. I made it up the hill this year and actually thought, now that wasn’t as bad as I remember!” As soon as the hill lets up you hit a downhill series on the back end of the course. I just let myself cautiously glide down the descent. The front half of the course is in the sun which makes the shady back half a relief. There was a cool breeze hitting my face and I felt phenomenal.

From about halfway up the hill I locked my place behind a woman twice my height. Seriously her legs alone were almost as tall as me. She was far enough ahead that I was only able to surpass her once at a water stop. It wasn’t long before she passed me again. I figured she was running a faster pace than I was used to running so I continued to keep her as close as possible. As we rounded the last corner towards the finish line I sped up, but so did the woman. She crossed the finish line first, but I knew even without seeing my time that I had pushed myself to a PR.

Lake Wyola Finish Line
Lake Wyola Finish Line

It was an awesome race. I wouldn’t do anything different. Soon after finishing I found Carlos and Orlando.

My little guy - he would rather be back swimming at the lake, but he was sweet to come see me finish.
My little guy – he would rather be back swimming at the lake, but he was sweet to come see me finish.
Carlos was getting a little fidgety and this was the best we could get! Orlando swears he’s running Wyola next year. I hope so.

We hung around for a while enjoying the post-race refreshments. The watermelon was delicious and hit the spot. Carlos was all over the home baked cookies.

On our way home we did a little house hunting while checking out for sale properties along the lake. It was just for fun, but hey you never know. Most everything was out of our budget (if we were actually to have a budget), and the couple that were within our price range were pretty much dilapidated shacks with issues thus the price.

Oh you’re probably wondering how I did on the race. Here are my times over the last three years.

Lake Wyola Road Race – 46:35 (9:42 average pace)
Shutesbury, MA – June 18, 2011

Lake Wyola Road Race – 47:22 (9:52 average pace)
Shutesbury, MA – June 10, 2012

Lake Wyola Road Race – 43:43 (9:06 average pace)
Shutesbury, MA – June 9, 2013

How about that!

15 thoughts on “Return to Wyola

  1. HUGE PR! Congrats! I find pushing hard on the first half often gets me to keep going the second half, sounds like you did exactly that. But fyi, you should find and post photographic evidence of the 10 foot Amazon Woman who paced you! Haha, whatever works, right?

  2. WOW…what a great PR! I’m sure it must be great doing the same race each year because you can judge all of your success (whereas sometimes it may be difficult to see in the day to day). Congratulations Aimee!!!

  3. That’s so awesome that you were able to PR! Now you know the trick, get behind tall women and run at their pace! LOL. I think getting proper rest and hydration helped, too . Congratulations!

  4. Holy shizz – that is awesome! You are just getting faster and faster – I think the core work and weights are helping though!

    Love the obligatory picture with Carlos at the end – glad he and the hubs were there at the end for you!

    1. I definitely feel a difference since I’ve changed up my routine. I bet you will too once you’re done with Insanity. Notice how I said I found Carlos and Orlando shortly after finishing. Well that’s because they missed me again! I think it’s funny because it happens so often. This time Carlos didn’t want to leave the lake. Who can blame him?! At least I got a photo.

  5. Hi Aimee! Well done! I so love your race stories.

    Well, I feel inspired that you keep getting better. Surely at this point, our wisdom of our age helps us get more strategic and patient with improving–such as we can still kick ass pretty well.

    I LOVE!!! that pic of you with Carlos above. It is very pretty and vibrant too.

    🙂 Marion

    1. The feeling I get from these races just doesn’t get old Marion. I love that I continue to learn and improve. It makes is that much more satisfying. And thank you for your compliment on the photo. I spent many years “taking” the photos, never actually having any taken of me. I take a photo at each race instead of saving my race bibs. I think it will be nice for Carlos to have these photos to look back on.

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