Friday, November 27, 2009

Turkey Trot

Silicon Valley Turkey Trot yesterday. My cunning taper plan involved running some hilly trails in the desert, hiking at the top of the mountain with my son, eating too much, and drinking too much beer. So despite weighing in at 155 (I was12 lbs lighter at my lightest) I was rested and carbo loaded!

Goal was a PR (38:22) and hopefully sub 38 minutes (6:07 pace). Weather was perfect (mid 40's, sunny, no wind). Course flat and certified. A "no excuses" race if ever there was one!

It was a big race with 11,000 runners combined for the 5k and 10k. I started a couple rows back and had a clean start.
  • First mile seemed really fast, but there were some buildings so maybe garmin got confused as it had me going at 5:45 pace. I hit the mile marker in 5:56, which seemed a little more likely.
  • Mile 2 was better, and I settled into low 6 minute pace. Passed the marker at 12:03, for a perfect 6:07 split.
  • Mile 3 I slowed a little and was feeling it, kept going about 6:10 but crossed the marker at 18:19 for a 6:15 split. The 5k runners had turned off and the course really thinned out. This is not my best time in a 10K and I was not having any fun. But 18:19 was 1 second faster than my 37:59 plan so I was still in this race!
  • Mile 4 was a battle to keep going strong. I just hate mile 4, and always slack off. Managed to get thru it in 6:14. Feeling bad, and now about 6-7 seconds off pace. sub 38 was looking hard and the PR was now seriously at risk.
  • We hit the turnaround right at the start of the fifth mile and I decided it was time to STFU and run. I caught and passed the 2 people that had been 20 yards ahead for the last mile. Then started the long home stretch. Got down to low 6 pace for a bit but was struggling. Ended up doing mile 5 in about 6:14 so my little kick at the turn hadn't helped all that much! 30:48 at the marker, against a plan of 30:34.
  • Mile 6, just 8 minutes to go. Picked it up and got back down under 6 minute pace. Hurt a lot, but I can do this for just a few more minutes and I held off the runner behind me. Mile 6 marker came up quickly after 5:44, so I knew it was wrong (should have been 5:55). I was at 36:33 against a plan for 36:41. However, if mile 6 is short, that usually means that the next part will be long.....
  • Final .213 miles. This should be about 1:18 at 6:07 pace and I was going faster than that. However it was more than .213 miles and I took 1:32. Crossed the line at 38:05, barely missing the sub 38, but at least salvaging a 17 second PR.
Official result was 38:07, 31st plcae out of 3,200+ runners, and 5th in my age group. Too fast in mile 1 (as usual) and then sloppy in miles 3/4/5 but with a fairly good finish. I did a good job running the tangents on the curvy streets but really need to watch that early pace and somehow find a way to gut it out in those middle miles.

Next up is the Bah Humbug! 5K in San Ramon on Saturday December 5th.

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