Run for the Animals Background:
This is the home of my 10k PR (2010) and it is mostly flat, with a few small "hills", but nothing major. The race is a combo 5k/10k.
It turns out I was the oldest person running in my age group today, so I had no dreams of placing in the top three. However, in my race next Saturday, I will be one of the youngest in my age group, so maybe I'll AG place a little higher than I would have otherwise! Anyway, going in to today's race I wasn't quite sure how my short speedy training runs would translate into a 10k race time, so my goal was to start a little on the conservative side, then let loose the 2nd half of the race. The forecast was for upper 70s at start with high humidity.
Anyway, I went to the race with my dad who was running the 5k. We met my sister and her husband and kids near the start line. They would be the cheering section for my dad and me.
|My dad, me, my nephew, sister and niece|
Here's something I haven't had to write about a summer race in a long time: But, just before the race started, the temperatures started to drop and the wind picked up (wow, did I actually write that?)! So, there actually are summer races where the weather is cooler than planned - go figure.
|A couple of minutes before the start|
Mile 1: I started off too fast because the wind was to our backs, we ran gradually downhill and I was trying to keep up with the 5kers. Running this pace, however was so effortless, since my training runs had been fast. I was barely breathing hard or sweating. 6:23/mile.
Mile 2: Running through residential streets, I tried to force myself to slow down, but was not successful because dreams of a sub-40 10k started dancing in my head. Four minutes into this mile, the 5kers started to turn up the speed because they only had 1.5 miles left, I again, got sucked up with them. Unfortunately, I still had 4.6 miles of racing left! 6:18/mile.
Mile 3: Despite the weather being in the upper-60s, it was still humid and my shirt was getting drenched. At this point, I realized I needed to slow down, or I would be walking by mile 5! Near the end of this mile, we lost the 5k runners and headed on the 2nd half of the course, which would take us through a park with a lake. 6:28/mile.
Mile 4: This is where the race started to get lonely real fast as about 2/3 of the runners were running the 5k and had left us. On the positive side, it was a relief that it was more quiet and solitary. On the negative side, there weren't many runners pushing the pace to get swept along with. Lots of nice neighbors were handing out their own water. Oh yeah, that slow start with a fast finish strategy was thrown out the window at this point! 6:36/mile.
Mile 5: Apparently they made a new course this year (as opposed to 3 years ago). We got to run through "North Park" and around and over the bucolic little lake that is the centerpiece of the park. We got to run over a couple of quaint little footbridges. A police truck along the course was blasting out "In the Mood" by Glenn Miller, so I shouted to the guy, "In the Mood!" and he said, "looks like you're in the mood!" By the way, this is the best version of the song IMO. It's a mashup with Glenn Miller and Rage Against the Machine! 6:45/mile.
Mile 6: All hope of a sub-40 race had gone out the window, there was a headwind, and I felt like it wouldn't be such a bad idea to walk it in. As I considered throwing in the towel, a couple of much younger runners passed me. Although I had no energy left to respond with, I was determined to not lose contact with them. If only I'd run five miles/week more the last few weeks, they would have remained in my rear view mirror, but what could I do? My shirt and shorts were drenched and I was hitting my limits. 6:56/mile.
Mile 6.2: Turns out I had a little more gas in the tank, but just a little. The two runners ahead of me accelerated just as I accelerated and they were out of reach. I couldn't see anyone behind me, so I ran over to the sidelines to high-five my nephew, sister and dad (who had already finished the 5k) and darted to the finish line. My nephew said that at the finish, my clothes looked like I had been in a pool for 16 hours! 6:23/mile.
Total time: 41:11
Age Group: 1 out of 26 (On the last day of my old age group, I was first! Yay me!)
Overall: 21 out of 608
My Dad's Results:
In the 5k, my dad got first out of three in his age group (75 to 79) and placed in the top 50% overall! Awesome!
|My dad finishing #1 in his AG|
It was nice winning my age group, as I was the oldest person in that group. However, I need to pace myself better now that the hot summer temps are here. I also need to get some rest for next weekend's half marathon, but I'm itching to get in one long run between now and then!