To make up for yesterday's half-assed attempt at a long run I decided I wanted to run the Bruiser course at Bradbury relatively hard this morning. My goal was to break 2 hours, which I didn't think would be too hard to do, but I usually never run the 12 mile course that fast in training.
Emma and I were joined this morning by Valerie, Lily, Jeff, Brett, Sara and Owen. We stuck together pretty well for the first 2 miles but then we started to get spread out a bit and by 6 miles Emma, Owen and I pulled away from the rest of the group. Some of our slowest miles were the early ones, we were averaging slower than a 10 minute pace and I couldn't figure out how we were going to pick it up enough to average better than 10's. It's amazing how a 10+ minute pace can feel fast, and like a lot of work on those trails.
The middle section of the race course contains some of the easier miles and we were able to pick the pace up. Emma hadn't originally intended to run at my pace but she was worried about losing her way so she decided to stick with my plan. Owen didn't seem to have any trouble keeping up despite this being his first time running with us (and at Bradbury).
I had stopped checking my watch by the time we entered the O-Trail, didn't need any distractions, so I wasn't sure how close we were to meeting my goal. I was actually surprised that we did manage to break 2 hours, but relieved that what felt like a lot of effort actually paid off. I still don't understand how some people run this course as fast as they do, 1:29 was the winning time at last year's Bruiser!
distance: 12 miles
weather: low to upper 70's, clear
conditions: unbelievably dry for Bradbury
gear: Inov-8 Mudroc 280, Balega socks, shorts, t-shirt, hat, Fuel Belt