Sunday, October 12, 2008

Space City 10 Miler

On a whim I jumped into a 10 mile race today. I was planning to run 10 for Texas next week but then noticed Friday on the website this race was postponed until mid-November. Unfortunately I noticed this AFTER my hard 18 mile with Tempo run on Friday and I was committed to a club run on Saturday for another 13 miles so I was on anything but "fresh" legs. Also the weather report made me also want to skip it with mid-60s and muggy - same weather as when I raced it the prior year and scored my personal worst race of the year (1:04:51 with walking) - but I felt the need to push myself a little so I went ahead and raced it.

Race Plan - Mile 1 - 5:45-5:55 pace, Mile 2-3 - 172 HR, Mile 4-5 - 170 HR (I wanted to go for negative split so back off a little these miles), Mile 6-10 - 172 HR - overall I was expecting 57-58 minutes out of this strategy.

Race Morning - Arrived about 6:15 for a 7 am start time - felt a little flat - not my normal jazzed up race ready self. Get my bib and get all my gear set and find my race plan screwed up by a dead battery on my Garmin - must have been left on all night and drained.....grrrrrr.....I am no good running by feel whatsoever - every race I've tried that has been a disappointment. No choice today - I go ahead and line up and just try to "feel" my way thru the race.

Race Conditions - 71°F, 68°F-Dew Point (91% humidity) (I thought it felt a bit better than last year but now that I look at the weather history - it looks a bit warmer).

705 Finishers.

Gun fires - although the pace "felt" relaxed - apparently I was knocking out 5:30 miles for the first two miles according to Gerardo (apparently I dragged him out a little too fast too) - I didn't know this and still felt a little relaxed. After 3 I ratchetted back the effort a little according to my "plan" and got to the 5 mile marker at 29:10'ish (this was the only time check on the course). Race plan was to pick it up but I just didn't want to - I maintained pace feeling like I should and could go faster but just not pulling it up - a couple guys ease by me without much resistance on my part. Around 8.5 I hear more steps coming up from behind and decide not to get passed anymore so kick in another gear. By the end I pass one guy then around the corner for the last 0.4 mile dash to the finish I hit high speed to go fast by another guy (to give him no chance to fight back) - he makes a move as I pass like he might fight then seemed to figure it was futile and lets me go - I push it in the last 1/4 mile worried he'd reconsider - apparently he didn't and I had a pretty good gap on him by the finish . Iwatch the clock count up thru the 1:00:0X's until I could cross.

First 5 - 29:18 (19th place)
Second 5 30:58 (23rd place)
Total - 1:00:17 (19th place) (PR by 4:34) (VDOT 58 - a 6 month Personal Worse).

Overall I get 5th for my age group - I stuck around for awards thinking I'd scored 3rd AG award since the 1st place for my AG (Sean Wade) got 2nd Overall and 2nd place would then take the Masters leaving me 3rd - but - unlike other races apparently this race allows runners to double-up so Sean took both 2nd Overall and the Masters prizes leaving me the spot one guy refers to as leader of the loosers - 4th place AG :-). Gerardo faded less than me and at least scored 2nd AG (congrats Gerardo - watch-out for me in the 1/2 marathon). A pretty poor race overall proving to myself once again - I just don't race well running by "feel" - although truthfully I may not have known the exact pace, it "felt" closer to marathon pace than 10M pace for those middle miles - I knew I wasn't pushing it hard enough. Without the HR/Pace data to do a proper post-mordom I really can't say what it says about my current fitness. Recent training runs in cold weather - especially in California this last week make me think I'm as fast as I've ever been - I just need some nice cool weather to see if I can deliever on race day.

Next Up - Koala 1/2 Marathon - 10/26 for a last tune-up race then on to San Antonio 11/16 for the 30,000 runner big race.

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