We had two racing opportunities this week, the first of which was at Warren. Since it is an odd year, the girls race first for Conference races; unfortunately, we were a bit rushed learning the course and getting warmed up. The weather was kind during our race, and the course was in pretty solid shape. At the gun, we did not get out very fast, and we certainly did not run the tangent to the first flag; we need to get smarter about running straight lines in races! After a slow start, we started moving up in the race. Most notably, Lainey went from the high teens to finishing in third overall. Most of our pack moved up, but not as dramatically. The number of PRs was pretty impressive during this race: Janelle, Steffany, Carolina, Tianna, Carmen, Helen, Emily, Lainey, and Ashley W. Additionally, Kayla completed her first 3-mile race as a ZBXCer! :) After our race, the clouds opened up, and we were drenched within minutes. I am most impressed by the way we handled this obstacle. When I arrived in the field house after the thunder, I was pleased to see our whole team circled up, stretching and counting. We are getting MUCH better about handling the "little things" that denote dedicated teams. Nice work! Equally impressive was the assistance you provided to the boys after their race was postponed. We are truly becoming linked! Keep up that giving, supportive mentality!
On Saturday, we had the opportunity to race at Wauconda's course again. Shout out to the F/S women who put up with my lack of reading skills and showed flexibility during their prolonged warm up. The F/S squad started things right! We earned 10 Lifetime PRs in this race: Janelle, Julia, Heidi, Steffany, Juliana, Carmen, Emily, Jessica, Iman and Michelle. Taylor earned a Season PR, and Ivory completed her first 3-mile race as a ZBXCer! Nice work, women! This young group showed that they are starting to understand race tactics. Post-race, we talked about getting stuck in a line in the woods, when to kick, and how to use downhills to our advantage. I can't wait to see this group race again!
Varsity took the F/S words of advice and ran a smart race. Although we got out a bit too slowly, again, we "grew" into the race. I could tell that there were some heavy legs in this group, thanks to the killer workout they completed on Thursday. Despite this factor, Justine earned a Lifetime PR, and Karyn ran a Season PR. More importantly, she raced pain-free for the first time in months. I was impressed by this group's desire to debrief post-race; I believe the race and the discussion will help us as we head into a great week of racing on our course and Warren's!
Finally, the Open women enjoyed, in my opinion, the best weather of the day. Anna completed her first 3-mile race as a ZBXCer, and we had four Lifetime PRs: Tianna, Ashley N., Kristina, and Odalis. Additionally, Ashley W. and Sam earned Season PRs. I was really happy to see Kristina feeling healthier and racing hard, as well as Tianna returning to her summer form. Ashley N. is going to be a force once she kicks this cold, and Ashley W. ran with courage despite her irritated Achilles.
On the day, we earned a total of 15 LPRs and 4 SPRs--not a bad day! If we can continue to grow each race, we will be unstoppable! In the meantime, I encourage you each to reflect on this week and set some new goals for our two fast courses this week. Both races will provide great opportunities for more aggressive starts--something I know we need to work on. The workout Thursday PROVES that you are fit...now you need to be willing to be uncomfortable during the race so you can show off your fitness. Let's go!