Saturday, June 6, 2009

6/6/09 - Heights 5k - 16:41, 6th OA, 4th in AG, Course PR

16:41 Overall Chip Time
No mile markers, and no Garmin so no mile splits.

I was looking forward to this race, hoping to run a fast time, looking to get sub-16:40. Rather than two hard workouts this week, I opted for the Tuesday "tune-up" workout of 30-30s. All in all, it seems to have worked out good to have helped me produce a stronger 5k than last week.

We toed the line, and all the big names were there... well, most of them. Sean, Lou, Bill, Joe O., Vaughn Gibbs, and only a few other front runners that I didn't recognize. Lou pulled Sean through two miles, then pulled up so did not finish. Two of the guys ahead of me I simply did not know. The other names I gave all finished ahead.

As we took off from the horn sounding, I tried to be fast but relaxed. I feel good that I settled into a good pace, not forcing it early in the race. The plan was to run a faster version of what I did at the Astros 5k... even through two and try to hammer it home. While I ran 11 seconds faster, and came within 12 seconds of my 5k PR of 16:29, I know that I fell off pretty handily in mile 3. I don't know where the mile markers were, but I was moving pretty swiftly through the half-way point, right on the tail of Joe Oviedo and another guy that I just did not know. We made the turn and headed back down Heights towards the finish and I really wanted to pick up the pace there...but just couldn't seem to do it. The drive was there... the desire was there, but the engine was starting to run low on fuel. Nonetheless, over the final half of the race, I lost about 4-5 seconds on Joe. I was watching the street numbers going by...8th St, 9th St, 10th St, racing back to 18th St. As I approached 11th St, that was where I hoped to be able to pick it up strong. Instead, I was fighting my body tieing up. I would feel it, try to drop my arms and lengthen my stride. About 30-seconds later, I had to do it again. I could feel I was losing ground, but I was pushing.

Finally came the final two blocks and I was really moving at top end for the day. I feel good about finishing as strong as I could today. My watch read 16:44, but Chip time came out 16:41, so I'll take it.

I'm amazed that I was able to come in 6th overall at this race, and walk away 4th in my age group and with no "hardware". I tell ya, that's frustrating, but also just pushes me harder. While Bill, Vaughn and Joe are out there ahead of me in this age group, I'm keeping them in my sights in hopes of at the very least, closing the gap on them.

I've never been this late in the year and been in this kind of 5k shape. Even better, I'm on the way up on fitness level. Even though it's getting hotter out, and 5k times will be tough to improve on, my fitness is going up. I'm excited about that, as we get closer and closer to Marathon Training time. That warmup series of 10-miles, half-marathon, 25k, then marathon are looking like good races down the line, as long as I can stay healthy.

Off to the showers now, then to get my new Adidas trainers, then to some family stuff.

1 comment:

geoff said...

Nice race. This age group is tough. That's a great race with no garmin and no mile splits.