Sunday, February 25, 2007

5-ish K


The kids' race is getting serious now

Third place at Dave's 5K Run for ALS, and for the first time ever I slipped under 16 minutes with a 15:56. Unfortunately, as the title of the post suggests the exact length of the course isn't clear. Since it isn't certified and I have a feeling it's a little short, I guess I'll keep the sidebar "PR's" where they are for now.

This is Kiera's "Resevoir Dogs" shot of me and the gang discussing the course

No big race report today, but suffice it to say I tried to run my best. The course was three loops around an outlet mall parking lot, with the third loop veering off at the end to hopefully give us the full distance. The winner of the Sun Run was on the line, and he mentioned to a few people that he hoped to take the first mile out in 4:55. A friend asked me where I was planning to run, and I told him 15:58. Yes, I'm an optimist. With the sound of the gun we were off, and in fairly short order Mr. Sun Run (his name is Carlos and he's a very nice guy) took off and grabbed a decent gap on the field. Surprisingly, even though I got off to a quick start I found myself behind a line of about six runners. For a small race in a parking lot this seemed like a pretty quick field. I made a quick decision to stay on the tail end of this group, even though they seemed to be running just above where I wanted to be for the first mile. Yes, this is where I got on the bus. There was a pretty stiff wind on the second half of each loop, and I knew that tucking in would save me some energy. With first and second place out of frame, here's me tucking in after hitting the split for the first mile-

I'm the handsome, tall guy poking out from the middle. Mile two was the crusher, as the pack I was in started to shake itself out. First place was out of reach, but now second place was dangling in front of us. Shane and Greg started to make a move from the pack, and I knew both of these runners were smart and fast enough to make it stick. I loosed myself from the rest of the pack and started towards them. As we curved back into the wind, Greg had come even with the second place runner and I was gaining on Shane behind him.

What a difference a mile makes (lap 2)

Just before the second mile mark passed Shane and moved into fourth place, though he stuck close behind me. Again I hit the split and started thinking about how much I had left. With Greg running in third just a step behind second place I started thinking about how to catch them. The breathing was really heavy and this point, but the legs were still turning over. I knew I wasn't going to slow down, but I didn't know just how much I could speed up and hold it to the finish. I was maybe 8 seconds behind the guys as we turned into the wind, and I guessed we had about 800 meters left. I thought about the 800's I ran earlier in the week, and how while they did hurt they also eventually ended. I started pushing off harder and bent my head into the wind. Greg was leaving behind his companion now and I was closing in. I could feel Shane coming back behind me now too, which made my chase all the more urgent. When we turned off the loop and started towards the finish (with perhaps 300 to go) I made one more long, hard acceleration. The road was bouncing now, I was getting ugly, but I passed number three and heard Shane's footsteps fading along with his. An eternal right hand bend revealed the clock. 15:5(rest covered by someone thoughtlessly standing in front of it). Instead of using my final breaths to curse the clock-watcher I dug in to the last strides and made it home in 15:56.

Today was a ton of fun, and it was nice to feel stronger than I did last week. Kiera and the kids were out watching (and taking hundreds of blog-worthy pics), and Haiden enjoyed the kids' race.

Special thanks to Mystery Coach for helping me see the right side of 16 minutes, short or not.

For anyone interested, Kiera posted a nice album of photos from the race here.

Training: 7 miles, w/5K in 15:56, mile 1 in 5:09, mile 2 in 5:18, mile 3(+.1?) in 5:29

16 comments:

duncan l. said...

Congratulations. Even if it's short, it was a fast race and a PR effort*. It was proof that you are training properly.
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*I can relate to "short?" 5ks dipping under 16:00.

Lawrence said...

Wonderful effort and post. Congratulations.

angie's pink fuzzy said...

right *ON*

(and I love the reservoir dogs shot)

Eric said...

i liked the reservoir dogs shot as well. nice race, mike. short or not, that's good progress.

that said, get out there and measure and re-measure that loop until mall security escorts you off the property!

Mark said...

GTG on your sub-16:00. you're moving in the right direction and now with the ceiling broke more will come

Andrew said...

Congratulations Mike. Very fast.

Dallen said...

Congratulations on the PR. I would claim it as legitimate.

I do remember once finishing at "5K" just a bit below 13 minutes.

Now I try to run certified races whenever possible.

Phil said...

No wonder the course felt a little short. When you're running that fast you're bending the space-time continuum. Congratulations on a great race and a new PR.

Love2Run said...

Love the pictures of you and the kids. Great race Mike!

Blaxabbath said...

Yeah! Get Ugly!! Woooooooo!!

Thomas said...

Congratulations! We knew you were ready for the 15:xx. Fantastic effort, as always.

Chad said...

Nice job, Mike. I like the Reservoir Dogs shot too. It's interesting that everyone is wearing a little different outfit; everything from tank top to jacket and gloves (what's that guy do if it actually gets cold?).

Scooter said...

Great race report, and great race. A good third beats a lousy win. I'd say this one was real, and even if short, shows you that you can get the job done. Second next ime against these guys?

Anonymous said...

I stumbled upon your blog by chance... I must say it is very educational, from the point of view of a barely-sub-20-5ker... however, I cannot help but chastise you for not wearing shades... good job on the suspected short-5K PR...

5th_sun

Abadabajev said...

Good point anonymous. Good race. Nice bus ride. And those fists...so tight.

Sempre Libera said...

Congratulations!