The temps were a lot colder than expected, so brought a bunch of clothes, and got to Castlewood early. Got in some warm ups and chatted with everyone for a bit, wasn't sure what to wear though. Decided on the shorts, long sleeve light top, singlet, AND the blue jacket... Might have been a bit much.
Headed to the start, but held back with a group. Didn't want to push hard, but honestly got stuck behind some people that were going slower than I should have. Made the first loop pretty easy and uneventful. Moved out from some slower runners when I could, then stayed with a couple guys for most of the loop. They were doing the 10K so started to push it on the last mile.
Grabbed 2 gel packs and dropped my jacket at the halfway check, then dropped 1 gel, doh! Second loop started pretty good, had a female runner out a ways in front of me, so tried to pick it up just enough to reel her in. Took a little longer than I thought, but got to her just before the stairs. Had to pass her at the top of the stairs, needed to get moving and push up the first hill. Passed a guy in there somewhere too, but apparently didn't pick up the pace as much as it felt.
Either way, felt pretty easy going. The second big hill... OUCH, that one bit back, had to walk some at the top. Pushed on after the hill, once the legs came back alive. Most of the second loop was alone, didn't see too many other runners. Started to hear the finish line are approaching the last mile or so, so figured it was worth pushing now. Last mile was the fastest, and felt good. Finished with plenty left in the tank, but really enjoyed the run!