Julie and I ran the 2nd Annual Run For Dad 5K this morning in Fort Worth. For some reason, we were both very nervous about today's race. For Julie, I think it was due to some recent tough runs. For me, it was the memory of the Buffalo Boogie, where I blew up about half a mile from the finish and had to walk for a couple of short stretches. Either way, it had our stomachs knotted, and our heart rates elevated.
My goals for today's race were simple:
I really felt like goal #1 should've been my 2nd goal, but I didn't want to get too greedy, and I didn't have a good sense of what goal #1 would've been in that case. I did look at a pacing chart last night, and again this morning, and I had somewhere between 8:05/mile and 8:15/mile pace in my head.
After getting up at 5:30 AM, taking a quick shower (who else showers before a race?), and taking care of other business, I had half an English muffin with peanut butter, some water, some Gatorade, and then we were off to the race.
This race was a point-to-point race, so our plan was to park somewhere in the middle, and jog/walk to the starting line. We arrived and parked with plenty of time to spare, and took a nice leisurely jog to the start. Once there, we picked up our timing chips, took a GU and some water, and I did some strides while Julie stood in line for the port-a-potty (this is usually my place right before a race). With just a couple of minutes to spare, we headed to the starting line.
Now, the race was being put on by a company that provides timing services for other races, so you'd think they'd pull out all the stops and at least have a timing mat for the start of the race, right? Wrong! Fortunately there were only 160 people entered, and while we weren't in the front few lines, we only lost a couple of seconds at the start. Anyway, back to the race...
The air horn sounded, and we were off! Initially, the course kicked uphill slightly, but not enough to be of any concern, and then we took a nice slight downhill towards the first mile marker. Within the first quarter of a mile I had separated from the crowd a bit, and settled into a nice rhythm—comfortably hard.
After the first mile marker, the road kicked back up a bit, but I was able to maintain my pace, and then cruised a nice downhill stretch. At around 1.25-1.5, I started hearing someone coming up behind me—nice and loud. It was a woman I remember seeing at the starting line who had commented that that this was going to be a fast race. She pulled ahead of me just a bit, and settled into the same pace. Had she not pulled just in front of me and then eased right into my pace, would I have gone faster through mile 2 and early in mile 3? It's hard to say. In the end she probably helped me as much as she slowed me down.
After a little uphill to the mile 2 marker, the course continued its nice downhill trend, and I was able to maintain a little faster pace, but still comfortably hard. Through a couple of flat stretches and a little uphill, we were finally coming into the last half mile. At this point I picked up the pace slightly, and pulled even with the lady who had previously passed me. I'll be honest, at the point, I wasn't really sure if I wanted to pass her or not. I couldn't tell how much she had left, and I didn't want to pass her too early, only to get "chicked" at the end.
As we rounded the turn into the final straight away, there were three of us running together, and another guy slightly up ahead. With just over a quarter of a mile to go I picked up the pace again, and surged ahead of the other two. This time I could tell that they were hurting, but they tried to hang on. Just ahead of the 3 mile mark, we caught the guy ahead of us, as he slowed to a walk. With a couple of words of encouragement for him, I kicked it to the finish.
My official time for the 2nd Annual Run For Dad 5K is 25:12. My splits were:
I finished 4th in my age group, nearly 4 minutes out of 3rd place.
Julie had an awesome run, too, finishing with a new PR by a 1:16. Her time was 27:24! She also finished 4th in her age group, 34 seconds out of 3rd place. Way to go!
Great result and awesome race report. I almost looked over my shoulder near the end.
Posted by Andrew is getting fit on 6/14/2008 1:44:01 PM
great run. and thanks for the happy fathers day note.
Posted by kevin on 6/16/2008 11:43:09 PM