Nordic Race Strandparken

Photo by J.P OCR/Sport foto

Nordic Race is only 5km, so it's not a distance I prefer. I definitely prefer the 15-20km races, with the short races, there are no room for mistakes, as they are so fast, intense and short!

Those I have spoken to the weeks up to Nordic Race knows that I actually was pretty determined not to race. Bad planning and an OCR confidence that wasn't too good resulted in me signing up for a 15+ trail race the day after Nordic Race, which I was WAY more excited about. My plan was to go all out on the trail race, therefore, I wasn't planning on running Nordic Race.

The week leading up to race day, I started thinking about wanting more OCR training where I combine running and obstacles, because I feel like that has been a struggle for me at my last race. I was having my doubt whether I wanted to race, the only decision I could make was to make the final decision on the morning of race day.

I had a good night sleep and woke up on the morning, thinking "I want to do this". I quickly wrote down my goals for the race, focusing on the fact that it was a training race and I wasn't going all out as I needed to save energy for my trail race the following day.

 My goals were:

  1. Keep my own pace
  2. Push the running
  3. Remember it's training
  4. Don't worry about placement or wristband, it means nothing
I was concerned about how I would tackle a bad placement or the loss of wristband, but tried to convince myself that any weakness exposed would be welcome as I could focus on improving that towords the OCR European Championship next month.

Course map Nordic Race Strandparken 

The race
I have never in my life been so calm before a Nordic Race as I was here, my focus was on myself and no one else.
The race starts and everyone is running fast, I get over the wall and to the slam ball carry, which was just a little akward. At this point I am probably 9 or so, I look at my watch and realize that I am wayyyy too comfortable in my pace πŸ˜‚ I pick up my pace, do the rope climb and off to Monkey Valley.
Last year I was slow on this obstacle but this time I was efficient and moved well, so well that i actually passed a lot of people on the obstacle. Off to the A-net, and then a running stretch before the cute little atlas stone 😍
A few more obstacles and next up was the Balance beam. I think it's safe to say I was not smooth on that beam, lost my balance, but on the bright side I had caught the little support rope in the middle, so I was just hanging there, until I got my feet back down on the beam; I get through, which resulted in a "yay", I was really enjoying this.

Training training training
Though I decided not to focus on placement, I knew I was in 7th place at this time. I felt good on the running, and got smoothly through Rabbit Hole, at this point I'm in 5th place, and get to Ball'n'chain. I know I need to keep pushing my pace between obstacles, thats's why I was there, but at this point I was alone! Luckily I catch up with Katja, this forces me to push my pace and not walk up to obstacles, whenever I get to one. The last 2-3km where I ran with Katja was actually the best part of the race, because I got to push the running and not waste time on obstcales, this was the reason I was there. The only obstacle where I actually allowed myself to take a few breaths before attempting it, was the Drop, as I tend to go into shock when jumping in cold water with a high pulse.
Photo by: Tommy Jensen

I guess either the water wasn't too cold or all the extremely cold showers I have taken at Fitness dk over the winter has helped me prepare for this, or of course perhaps my pulse wasn't too high πŸ˜‚ But I didn't go into shock or start hyperventialting, I was able to control my breathing. Now there was only 4 obstacles left, got through Power Pull, and to Power Push. This obstacle was the only one where I needed 2 attemps, on my first try I just didn't get the 6kg slam ball over, luckily I got it over on  my second attempt. Off to Nutramino Big Rig, which ironically as an Nutramino athlete, has not been my friend last year 😁 I got through on my first attempt without too much trouble, on to Staircase, and then cross the finishline. 

Lessons learned
This was definitely my favourite Nordic Race I have ever done - despite the fact that I have been on the podium at Nordic Race. I kept to my race plan and only focused on pushing myself and not anything else. And best of all, I really enjoyed it and had a good time out there. 

The race proves to me that the most important part of the race is for me to focus on my OWN race plan and not go too hard at the beginning. I am much better when I keep my own pace and that's when I succeed! πŸ˜€ More importantly I am doing the right things in my training, I was a bit nervous as I don't do as much heavy lifting as I normally would do, but my training is going the right way and I just have to keep it up leading up to the OCR European Championship. And thanks to this race, I am confident and excited about it 😊

And for my trail race, I won, so it's was woth holding back at Nordic Race πŸ†πŸ˜Š

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