Monday, October 26, 2009

halloween hustle 10k: 42:16.7

friday 10.23.2009 i took a look at the local race schedule and noticed that a 5k and 10k race was planned for saturday on the trail i intended to run on during that same time. i resolved that if i woke up feeling fresh and the forecast was favorable, i would try and jump into the 10k race. without the aid of an alarm, i woke up saturday morning two hours before the race was scheduled and i was feeling pretty fresh. i checked out the forecast, and it looked like my kind of running weather.

i arrived at the race start location at 7:30 a.m. i registered for the race, found a restroom, did a one mile warm-up and some stretching, lined up in the first row of the starters, and sized up the other runners a little. at 8 a.m. we heard the "ready, set, go!"

200 meters into this race and i was slapped in the face with a: "why in the world did you decide to do this?!" i figured this was just my system in shock from shifting into effort mode and once i found a rhythm i would enjoy six point 2 miles of up-tempo running.

mile 1: 6:26

during the second mile i found myself sliding into about a 6:50 pace. this was where i wanted to be for the day. i wanted to stay sub-7.

at the 5k turn-around cone, i was shocked at how many of the runners i was running near made the turn. i had one runner in front of me. he appeared to be in an older age group than me, and he also appeared to be running very strong. i was thinking it might be possible to reel him in later. as i looked up the trail i thought it was possible that two other runners were way up there, but it was hard to tell.

mile 2: 6:45

during the third mile i knew i was slowing another notch, but i was still hopeful of staying close to 7 and having some in the tank for the last mile.

due to this being an out-and-back course, as i was approaching the turn around, i was able to take note that i was in 4th place. the three ahead of me all looked to be running strong and it appeared that i was not going to be catching them during the final 5k. just prior to the turn around i hit a gel. i was intending to wash it down at the turn around aid station, but i was disappointed to discover that the information given to us at the start was inaccurate, i.e., no water at the turn around.

mile 3: 6:59

when i turned around, i had a chance to see if anyone was hunting me down. the next runner behind me was the first female and she was running strong.

the fourth mile was a hold-on mile. i knew i was sliding, but i didn't want to slide much. i believe somewhere during this mile the first female runner passed me.

mile 4: 7:00

the fifth mile was another holding-on mile. i was looking forward to some water at the 5k turn around location. i was thinking that once i got to that aid station, i would be able to pick it back up a little.

i did finally get my water and i put some on my head for an extra little pick-me-up.

mile 5: 7:07

during the sixth mile, i could smell the finish and i was able to get the legs turning over a bit quicker again. i was feeling pretty pleased. i was able to calculate that my time was going to be a sub-7 average and given that sub-7 average was what i was hoping to accomplish out there, i was feeling pretty good.

mile 6: 6:51

i finished the last .2 charging strong.

"halloween hustle 10k": 42:16.7 (6:48 average) [official results: here]

i had fun visiting with some local runners after my run was over. it was nice to get some bonus schwag for the day in the form of a 2nd place medal for my age division. i had a good runner's high for the rest of the day. i think with fresh legs a 10k at 6:30 pace is not too unrealistic for the near future. no regrets for impulsively jumping into this race on one my favorite running trails, i.e., the "frisco highline trail".

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