REEDS LAKE 5K/10K RACE REPORT, Sat., June 28, 2008
Preliminary results (my watch time): 5k, 33:54; goal: 35:00. 10k, 1:15:26; goal: 1:15. So I made one goal, and came close on the other.
It was overcast, almost stormy looking at the beginning of the 5k but also very humid (72 degrees, 81% humidity). Pretty much a sweat fest. My goal had been determined from my last 2 5ks and the fact that I was doing the 10k after. I wanted to hold back enough to feel good through the 10k. My first mile was under 11 min., very comfortable, yet faster than I expected. I walked through the first water stop. Mile 2 was just slightly over 11 min., so I took a 30 second walk break. I didn't need it, I just wanted to slow down. Mile 3 then was about 33:34, so I did pick it up just a little to get in under 34 since I was so close. I was glad to be done and also realized I didn't feel too bad, other than sweaty.
I had 11 min. before the start of the 10k so headed to my car to get my sunglasses. The sun was starting to break through the heavy cloud cover and I didn't want to chance not having them. Plus, I like being able to hide behind them. I feel like a voyeur that way, like I am invisible: I can see you but you can't see me.
I ran into Don after this, chatted a little, and he told me he was going to go stand on the corner near where his car was until I came through, which as it turned out was past the 5k mark. I also saw Alison from work--I recognized the race shirt she was wearing from a race we had both done. She wasn't running today, however. And suddenly I realized I only had about a minute to get to the start line, waaaay down the street. Now I was going to have to run and hope to make it. So I guess with that little jog and the warmup at the beginning of the 5k, I probably ran 10 miles today.
Because I had to hop into the lineup, I started pretty close to the front. I held my pace and eventually the masses passed me. I was trying to decide what to do for pacing: run 10 min. walk 1? Run to the first water stop? Run to the first mile? As it turned out, I ended up running a full 20 minutes, which put me right at the first water stop. I walked about 30 seconds here and started again, hitting the second mile in under 24 min., so slightly ahead of what I had planned. Here, though, several women I had passed before the first mile now passed me. I let them go, secretly hoping I'd catch them eventually, but also figuring I might not.
I wasn't sure where I was in the race. I was either at the front of the back of the pack or totally at the back of the pack. After this, I decided to time walk breaks every 10 minutes. The sun was out full force now, but thankfully a lot of the course was shaded. My next walk break then came on a long upgrade, and I didn't mind that at all. This helped when we came to the biggest hill (of the 5 on the course), this helped me not really have to walk up that monster, although my pace wasn't much more than a fast shuffle. Shortly after reaching the top of the hill I was hearing the chirping of the timing chips and figured there was a mat somewhere near and then discovered it was at the 5k mark, so much as I wanted to walk here I pushed through the 5k mark and then took in the rest of my gu and some more water. My time was about 36 something.
I kept up to the next 10 minutes and was going to take another break but decided to wait until I got through an intersection where cars were waiting to go through. I also passed two younger runners here who when they passed me at 2 miles I heard the girl say her heart rate was 184. If mine was that high, I'd probably be having a stroke. And so I wasn't surprised to see them walking.
I finished through the intersection and was coming close to another runner but I stuck to my plan, did my walk, and then continued. I saw Don here, and I'm sure he was glad to finally see me so he could leave!
I continued to gain on the other woman but resisted the urge to pass her. We were now at 4 miles and I held out the urge again to walk until 10 minutes. I was so sweaty by now there were times when it would cloud over for a minute and I wasn't sure if it was sprinkling or it was my sweat flinging off myself. I continued gaining on the closest person but it wasn't until she stopped to walk that I was able to get past her. Then it was up another short incline and around a corner and here I saw the 3 other women who passed me way back at mile 2. They were still a good ways ahead, but they were there, and I was surprised and pleased. There was also a woman walking here, so she was an easy target to pass. My walk break was coming up, but it wasn't until after the 5 mile mark. I was so glad to see that!
I realized, looking at my watch, that I still had plenty of time to make my goal, and it was also here that survival mode came into play. I was starting to feel a little queasy, mainly from the heat, so I made the wise decision to walk at 5 minutes, which I kept up until practically the end.
I was coming into the last 3/4 of a mile, knowing that the finish line could be seen but still was oh so far away, and my stomach wasn't doing well. And who do I see here? Two more women who passed me at 2 miles. One walking completely, the other slow shuffling, walking, running, shufflling. I knew the one who was walking would be my next target; I just didn't know about the other until after I took another walk break and then she was mine. I passed her, and went into the home stretch of the race and suddenly my stomach was not doing well at all. My breathing was getting very catchy too, and I just had to walk. I told myself when I got to the traffic light I would run, the traffic light, the traffic light. But then slow shuffler was coming by me again and I had to take her on. The instinct came from years of racing, at a much faster pace, and the knowledge today that I could beat some people who had only done the 10k.
Right at 6 miles, a woman who walked a loooong way was now sprinting to the finish, urging me to join her. I couldn't. My stomach wouldn't allow it, and I was starting to tighten up. I had all I could do to finish. I saw Alison here again cheering me on. I raised my fist and was so happy to be finishing this thing!
The sun was out full force here. No shade at the finish line. I saw the temperature at 78 degrees on a bank thermometer. That's not really hot when you're just standing around, but running, and running nearly 10 miles, with the added 70+% humidity, and you get the picture. My clothes were so wet, I could actually wring them out when I changed. Nothing like high humidity and heat to suck the life out of you.
I think I did okay. I couldn't help but think about a year ago, when my max pace for any distance was probably about what my ending pace today was. So I have come a long way in gaining back some strength that was never there last year. For that, I am happiest.
Time and place in the age group were not the goal today. Finishing both races in my goal time was and that was achieved. Now, its on to my swim.