Great race for me today. I ran a shake out of about 2.5 miles in the morning and it felt really good. Throughout the day I tried to focus on school work. 45 minutes before the race I did 2 miles with the guys racing, and felt good. Almost no coughing. Did strides before we started and felt pretty good.
We get to the start line, and there is about 25 people on the 5 lane track. It was super crowded. I was in lane 1/2ish with a lot of guys. The gun goes off, and I start moving aggressively, but just get pushed down from behind and roll. I'm not sure exactly what happened, but the gun fired again and everyone came back to the start. I had a scraped knee and a hole in my shoe, but other than that I felt okay. The official asked if I still wanted to race. Of course I did, I've been looking forward to this for a long time. So that was that.
When we restarted I didn't want to fall, so I started slow. I was near the back. My first lap was easily my slowest. I tried moving up on the straight-aways and I felt good getting up there. We were 55 on the first lap(it's a 5 lap per mile track), so that made me a bit uneasy as we were planning on 53s-54s for the first mile. Rory was pacing the first mile of the race, and he had a bit of a lead on me, so I tried to just keep moving up. I stayed on his tale for the rest of the first mile, where he ran 53s-54s. A UVU guy passed me, and I just tried to have patience. We came through the mile at 4:30(goal pace was 4:28), and I stayed with the UVU guy for a bit, then passed him, then another UVU runner passed me, then I passed him, and he came around me again, then I came around him. This was all in the course of 1.5 laps. Well, with about 3 laps to go I made a move to get a good time. It seemed that my goal of sub-8:20 might be out of reach today, but I just kept pressing. With a lap to go I saw I needed to run a 52 last lap if I was going to get it. Here I started moving. I just tried my best to go. When I hit the final straight, I saw the time slowly move up and I thought I wasn't going to make it, but I was wrong. I crossed right at 8:19. Chase Horrocks came in about 5 seconds after, then Patrick and then a big group. It was a lot of fun to race again. I was surprised that most of the guys I've been training with weren't up there with me. We have a solid group of guys that didn't travel during cross country that all train together, and I expected at least three other guys to be right up around 8:20 as well.
Cool down was for about 2 miles, but I kept coughing really bad, so I had to stop a few times. Later I ran another 2 miles.