KY Running Blogs: Brittney Hansen, Bowling Green

 On Saturday, our team ran a very tough race. We ran at the Trinity/Valkyrie Meet up in Louisville. I have to admit, every meet you go to there is going to be some tough competition, but not like this one. This meet was packed with some excellent runners who I know will throw down some good times. As soon as we got to the meet I was pretty nervous because of these other runners. Our coach said that he was looking for times this week not place so this thought made me feel a little better. When we started our warm up I felt good. When we went on our warm up I could already tell this was going to be a good race. Usually on warm ups I feel a little tired and shaky but on this warm up I felt great and “tall”. I have no idea what this means but I just felt really tall like I was over powering everyone. My dad asked how I felt after my warm up, as he usually does, and when I told him I felt “tall”, he smiled and said that means you feel light on your feet. This made me feel good about the race. We headed over to the line after we were done stretching and praying. When we got to the line we were pleased to know that we were in lane one. This was a great lane because instead of piling into the middle, we got to go straight. The only thing bad about our lane was the porta-potty right next to us! I felt great before this race and everything was going perfect for me, now I have to see how my race goes.

        When the gun went off, our team had a decent start. It wasn’t the best but we made up for it during the race. When we hit the first turn our team was split up. Two of our girls were about three seconds in front of me and my teammate, and I had no idea where our other two girls were. Usually during races, we are a pack, but this race had so many runners, it was kind of hard to stay together. So as I move up to catch our other two girls, I thought my teammate would follow me but she got stuck in this pack on the inside, which is awful. So I thought to myself, just work your way up and try to do the best you can and try not to worry about what was going on behind me. So my two teammates and I work our way to the front. We passed our first mile at 6:00 minutes. This kind of worried me because last year on this course, I passed the first mile at 5:45. Then I thought about it, last year I died on the second mile because I went out too fast so maybe this is a good pace. We continued our pace and kept moving up and passed the second mile at 12:08. Now the last mile was the hardest. At least I thought that. About a minute after we passed the second mile, my teammate leaves me and keeps pushing the pace. I tried so hard to keep up with her but I just couldn’t. Instead of worrying though, I just used her to push me. I didn’t want to keep slowing down, so every time I saw her pulling farther away from me, I kept picking it up. When we got to about a 800 left, she picked it up a lot and I was going farther and farther back. I don’t know what it was that made me sprint at the end. Maybe it was my dad telling me that I needed to go, or that I was in 28th and top 25 get awards, or that I realized how close I was to getting the time I wanted, or maybe it was a combination of all those things. All I know is that I had a kick at the end, that I haven’t used in awhile. As I sprinted in, I passed four people. One of them was my teammate. I wish I could’ve told her good job but I could not breathe, so as she finished I made a point to give her a hug and tell her what an awesome job she did. As the rest of our girls finished I told them all good job because we did phenomenal. We finished in 3rd place which was a great surprise.  We had done something that no one had expected us to do and that always makes me happy.