Dover-Foxcroft Pony Pride 5K August 3, 2013


My first race in almost two years. Having raced this course several times helped prevent nervousnes, but the span between races was evident: I forgot all pre/post race supplies. One of my old posts lists what I need. In the future I need to read that post.

I had a nice time pre-race chatting/warming up with my High School Geometry teacher Mr. (Gary) Larson. We went for a half mile warmup. Gary is a fellow heart rate numbers geek. I’m glad to find someone who “understands” as most people aren’t interested in the data. He mentioned his last race was around 23 mintues. I thought that was a good goal, so planned to stick close to him. He is 68 years old, 21 years older than me. Doreen got a nice picture of  us:

GaryLarsonAndMeBeforeRace

Mom took nice pictures of the pre-race pep talk, and the start:

DSC04180

DSC04181

I have been running with a knee wrap, and had a problem with it at the start of the race. First time I recall that happening. It fell down my left leg. I reached down, and slid it back up. However, it crept down again. I pulled off to the side, took it off, and re-wrapped the knee. I think it was a 20 to 30 second event, but I am not sure. It was fine during the warmup. Standing around with it caused the issue. Something to remember.

Mile one went by in 8:07. I started farther back then normal, and with the knee wrap delay, I passed a lot of people during the first half mile or so. It made me feel I was running fast, but knew it was misleading. Going into the race I had a “don’t set the bar too high” thought, so I was not too discouraged.

The course markers were well marked this time. That’s a good thing. Mile two started at the fair grounds and half of it was down hill, and  the rest flat or up hill. I got to mile two in 15:37, covering that mile in 7:30. Gary Larson was in sight, but I was not able to catch him. The rain let loose during the mile. A bunch of us ran through town. People were working hard setting up tents to stay dry as they got ready to sell stuff during the festivities of Alumni weekend.

The last mile has a nasty hill in the middle. I told Dad that seeing him on top of the hill motivates me to run hard up it. Doreen, Mom, and Dad were there again, and they snapped this picture:

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Mile three was faster than the first two miles: 7:26. I arrived at the three mile mark in 23:03. I covered the last .1 miles in a blistering 23 seconds (sub 4 minute mile pace!) The results posted here http://bangordailynews.com/2013/08/04/sports/local-sports-results-for-aug-3-4-2013/ (Pony Pride 5K) shows I finished the race in 23:26.  I was hearing footsteps behind me, and didn’t want to get passed in the end.

I certainly feel I didn’t set the bar too high, and am exited to race again.

I am bummed to say my Garmin is no longer working. I went for a run with it one day in a torrential down pour, and now it doesn’t start. Work has provided a Blackberry smartphone, and I am now using http://www.endomondo.com/ to record workouts. Here are maps and graphs grabbed for this race:

Course:

map

Pace / Elevation graph: Note – I did not stop the clock at the end of the race. The time reported at EndoMondo was 24 minutes even.

PaceElevation

The Blackberry has the ability to record heart rate, but I have not bought the equipment needed. I might do it in the future.

 

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Patellofemoral Syndrome / Iontophoresis September 11, 2011 to Today


I have to bring a pen and paper to the physical therapy I have been getting. There is no way I would remember let alone spell words like Patnellofemoral Syndrome or Iontophoresis. Ok, maybe I’d get “syndrome.” Patnellofemoral Syndrome is my diagnosis. Iontophoresis is my cure.

Sunday September 11, 2011 I was wrapping up a run. I swung my right leg past my left, and bang(!) something happened to my left knee cap. I guess Patnellofemoral Syndrome happened. I tried to continue to run for a month or so. The knee didn’t get better. I started to walk and “rebounder” more.  Still no improvement. October I went to my family doctor, then November a sports medicine doctor. January I went to physical therapy. The physical therapist said the exercises suggested by the sports medicine doctor hurt more than helped.

Here are the stretches the PT gave me. They haven’t hurt, but haven’t helped too much either:

Tensor: hold for 20 seconds, repeat 3 times, do 1 set, 2 sessions a day

Iliotibial band stretch: hold for 20 seconds, repeat 3 times, do 1 set, 2 sessions a day. Lean to right more than the picture shows.

Gastroc stretch: hold for 20 seconds, repeat 3 times, do 1 set, 2 sessions a day.

Quadriceps strength: hold for 5 seconds, repeat 10 times, do 2 set, 2 sessions a day. Squeeze a ball between knees and press knees together and then down:

Straight Leg Lift strength: repeat 10 times, do 2 set, 2 sessions a day, swing left leg out and then up and down 10 times:

Hip Adduction (Side-Lying) strength: repeat 10 times, do 2 set, 2 sessions a day. No weight tied to left leg as I think there is in this picture:

Hamstring Supine stretch: hold 20 seconds, repeat 3 times, do 1 set, 2 sessions a day. I do not think this one if for my knee. The physical therapist felt sorry for me because of how people laugh when they saw how stiff/inflexible I am, so this one was added on my second visit:

The following were added on third or fourth week of PT:

Toe/calf raises: repeat 18 times, 3 sets, 1 session every other day:

I could not find an animated picture of the last stretch: the Cook Hip Lift.  I repeat 18 times, 2 set, 1 sessions every other day.

Ice 15 minutes, often, and after every stretch session.

I am still in pain walking up or down hills or stairs. It is not disabling or anything, just enough to worry me that running would make it become disabling.

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Guilford Race To End Domestic Abuse 5k Race October 2, 2011


Doreen and I got up at 6:00AM and were heading to Guilford by 7AM. At 6:15 I took two ibuprofen tablets to reduce inflammation due to a sore left knee that has been bothering me for a couple weeks. It did the job as the knee was not a bother during the race.  We arrived in Guilford at 8:50AM.  I picked up the race packet, and got ready for the 9:30AM start. Doreen took these photos while we waited:

This is the first race in a while that needed long shirt and pants. It wasn’t too cold though, and many ran with shorts and a t-shirt, but I decided not to. The first mile or so was a gradual down hill:

and went by in 6:45. I’ll have to check, but I think that is the fastest mile I have done in a race this year.

The out and back course started at Guilford’s Elementary School and made its way to a trail next to the Piscataquis River.  Mile two can be described as rolling. That mile went by in 7:11. My overall pace was 13:56, just under a seven minutes per mile.

Mile three made it back to where the race started, back up the hill that we came down during the first mile. Mile three went by in the same time as mile two: 7:11.  Total three mile split was 21:08, creeping over 7:00 pace.

When I heard my finish time, 22:36, I was disappointed. However, I think the course was long.  My Garmin reported 3.2 miles not 3.1 .  The last .2 miles took 1:28. This is what I entered into my Access running log: 3.1 miles (5K) in 21:50 (21:06 + 44 seconds: half of the 1:28). I then entered a .1 run in 44 seconds.

Just a ho-hum race, but those are good too. After the event Doreen and I went to Dover and hung out a bit before heading to Orono to see Steven and then home:

Not sure if I will race again this year due to my sore left knee. We will see.

The elevation, heart rate, and pace graphs:

I was happy with the effort, and the heart rate line looks good to me.

I went out fast. The first 1/3 mile or so was faster then the rest of the race. From that point the pace was very consistent, I thought.

Here is the course:

Thanks for reading!

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Augusta Bond Brook 5k Trail Race Series August 11, 18, 25, September 1, 8, and 15 2011


August 11, race number one:

I like a good bargain. The fee for this series, six races for $25, can not be beat. Yesterday I ran the first of the six races. It was brutal. The course map from my Garmin does not give much detail:

The course is over new skiing, biking, and running paths the “Augusta Trails” organization is building. The aerial view is pretty cool:

This is the most dangerous course I have run. Down hills were scary. When running down, I was looking forward to uphills. Until one arrived.

I was happy with mile one: 7:32. My goal pace was 7:30. Mile two went by in 8:12.  Mile three 9:24.  After getting past the three mile mark it usually takes me 35 to 45 seconds to finish a 5k. This race is not normal. It took 70 seconds. Total time 26:19. It will be an interesting series.

Reading this over sounds like I may not have had too much fun. On the contrary. It was a blast,  and am looking forward to the next one.

The elevation, heart rate, and pace graphs:

I hope to work harder in future races, getting rid of the dips in the heart rate line.

I probably went out too fast. I think if I ran 20 to 30 seconds slower in mile one, my end time would also be 20 to 30 seconds slower. Those last hills…

Nice race photos here.

Next race is next week when I run this one again.

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August 18, race number two:

I had high hopes the second race would be faster than the first one. Before the first race my week had gone like this: Saturday 5K race in 21:16. Monday 10.27 miles with this workout: 5 X 1K;4:21;1:00 then 4X40 second striders. Thursday first Bond Brook 5K.

The Sunday before the second of this six race series I ran10 miles during my weekly interval workout, 5X1k;4:14;1:00 4 X 40 second striders. Tuesday I did 8 X 20 second striders during an easy four miler. Thursday the second Bond Brook 5K.

I thought the week leading up to the second race was easier than the first race. Also,  I knew the course better, this being the second time through. Those were the reasons I thought I would get a better time.

In the first race, I only held back a little during mile one. It has many very steep and very long down hills. I covered mile one in the first race in 7:31, mostly trying to keep up with myself, and not going head over heels down a hill.  I thought a better strategy would be to hold back even more, saving for the horrible up hill last mile.  I was 11 seconds slower, finishing mile one of the second race in 7:42.

I felt good starting mile two at both races. Down hills do that for you. The second mile is mostly up hill. By the end of it I was not feeling good. However, I was reeling week one’s time in. August 11 mile two went by in 8:12. August 18 mile two – 8:03. At the end of mile two the times were 15:44 (week 1) and 15:46 (week 2.) Only two seconds behind.

I knew I was close to my previous time. I was feeling bad due to running mostly uphill over the last mile, but thought I had a chance to finish faster than last week. I dug in and went for it at the start of mile three. However, by the end of the mile I felt worse than I did after finishing the mile during the first race. I am proud and happy to report the following times at the end the third mile: first race three mile time – 9:24; this race – 9:19. First race total time after mile three: 25:09; this race : 25:05. Four seconds ahead!

Too bad the race didn’t end then. It took 70 seconds to go from the end of mile three to the finish during week one. Total time 26:19. In the second race the final stretch went by in 74 seconds. Crap, I lost the four seconds. Well, I guess it is not that bad. Maybe it is sort of funny.  I finished week one and week two both with a time of 26:19.

The elevation, heart rate, and pace graphs:

Comparing the heart rate graphs, I think race number two shows a better effort. It didn’t dip as much, meaning I did not ease up. I think that is what it means. The average heart for this race was 178. The highest I got it to was 188. Last weeks numbers were 172 average /183 maximum. Then again, maybe race one was better – same time with less effort.

At first glance I thought race #2′s pace graph was awful compared to race #1.  However, the scale confused me. The first race had five minute pace increments, and peaked at 20 minutes per mile. The second race’s chart had two minute increments, peaking at 16 minutes per mile.  The fastest pace during the first race was faster than the second. Same with slowest pace – the slowest pace during the first race was slower than the second.  The average was the same.

Nice photos here and here.

Next week’s goal will be to go faster from the end of mile three to the finish.

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August 25, race number three:

Due to rain that may have caused slippery conditions, I decided to pass. Plan to race next week.

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September 1, race number four (my third due to skipping race number three:)

This series is turning into an interesting experiment: What pacing strategy will result in the fastest time? The first race was sort of a “control” race. I had no idea I was in an experiment, and had no clue what pace I could maintain. I went into the race with 7:30 as the goal pace. The first mile in the first race was 7:32, so I gave it a short. I did not know how steep the hills were going to be. The first (and the second) race pace ended up being 8:26, one minute per mile slower than I thought I would be.

The second race’s strategy was to hold back during the mostly down hill mile one, and then race hard the rest of the mostly up hill course. The strategy worked over mile one, two, and three.  Mile one of the second race has been the slowest of the three opening miles: 7:42. However, I was able to make up the time, being four seconds ahead of the first race after the third mile. As described in the other race report, I lost the four seconds over the last .11 miles in the second race, finishing with the same time as the first race.

The strategy for this race, my third, was to apply what I learned in the first two races. It worked! Race one and two finished in 26:19. Race number three’s time: 25:54. Woo Woo!

Here is what I learned in race number one, described by a quote from the first race report: “I think if I ran 20 to 30 seconds slower in mile one, my end time would also be 20 to 30 seconds slower.” With that in mind, I did not hold back (much) in mile one. During the race I thought I was more aggressive going down the mile one hills than in previous races. However, the time of the first mile was the same as race one: 7:32. I was hoping for 7:20 to 7:25. Oh well, it was faster than the first mile of the second race’s 7:42.

Here is the quote from the second race report describing what I learned in that race: “go faster from the end of mile three to the finish.” In order to accomplish that goal, I cheated. In this race, over mile two and three I aggressively ran down hills, but up hills I did not attack. Most of mile two and three were up hill. I ran hard, but my pace slowed significantly, falling behind the first two race times:

Mile

Race 1

Race 2

Race 3

Mile

Total

Mile

Total

Mile

Total

1

7:32

7:32

7:42

7:42

7:32

7:32

2

8:12

15:44

8:03

15:45

8:24

15:56

3

9:25

25:09

9:19

25:04

9:33

25:29

At the end of mile three I had a lot left in the tank, but I was 20 or 25 seconds behind the first two races. I sprinted to the finish line in 26 seconds! The explanation point is because it took me 70 seconds in race one, and 74 seconds in race two to cover the distance. The strategy, “do not worry about going too fast in mile one, and hold back over miles two and three to have a strong finishing kick,” worked. Race one and two times were 26:19. Race three’s time was 25 seconds faster: 25:54

But now, the rest of the story: My garmin reported 3.13 miles for the first race, and 3.11 miles for the second race. 26:19 divided by 3.12 (the average) is how I came up with the 8:26 pace for the first two races. The garmin only had 3.05 miles for race number three. 25:54 divided by 3.05 is 8:30 pace, four seconds per mile slower than the first two races! I hate it when the numbers do that to me.

Here are the courses. Have fun finding the differences between the pictures:

This week’s course, race number four, though it is my third race:Here is the second week course:Here is the first week course:

The elevation, heart rate, and pace graphs:

The heart rate line over the last couple miles shows I eased up. The increase at the end tells the story of my strong finishing kick.  My average heart rate was 176, and the highest I got it was 185.  The average/maximum from race two was 178 / 188.  Race one: 172 /183.

I did not race last week, but after a one mile warmup, I ran a four mile tempo run, followed by a one mile cool down. Here is the heart rate / elevation graph of that run:

I think it is interesting. All my tempo runs look that – lots of ups and downs in the heart rate line, from mile one to five. I am able to keep my heart rate up during races better than tempo runs.

The pace line shows my strategy: down hills the line dips showing an increase speed. Uphills show the slow downs.

Race results here. Race photos here.

Next race is next week when I run this one again, getting the necessary four races so I can legally say I finished the series. I think I will start out at 8:30 pace, and see what I can do.  My theory: the heart rate average will be low, but maybe my pace will be faster. I feel like laughing like an evil scientist for some reason….

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September 8, race number five:

Due to work, I did not make it. At 12:05PM was told I was working until 8:00PM due to power outages in New York. Bummer, and a long work day. Will make it next week for the last one in the series.

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September 15, race number six (my fourth due to skipping race number three and five:)

I felt I was set up to have a great race. I was in a step back week, so did not run a long run slash interval workout the Sunday before the race as normal. A couple days before the race, I did a “marathon pace” four miler. It was a quality pace that I felt primed me to run even harder on race day, but did not take much out of me. Unfortunately, I did not make it to the race I was set up to do so well in. It was last weeks race where work asked me to stay late.

This week, I was not so well set up. I am not in a cut back week. The Sunday before the race I ran the long run slash interval workout. The interval part went great. However, after the intervals were over, at the 7.68 mile mark, I felt pain/discomfort under my left knee cap. I immediately stopped running because of the strangeness of the feeling. I recall reading about runners complaining about sore knees, but have not had the problem before.

After a tenth of a mile or so of bewildered walking, I started jogging again, making it back home. Up hill was when the pain came. Flat or down hills were fine. The next day I did 40 minutes on the rebounder – cross training. I did not run Tuesday. I usually run every day. Wednesday I did another 40 minutes on the rebounder. The knee has not improved, but has not gotten worse.

Between 3PM and 4PM on race day I took two ibuprofen pills to help ease the pain. In the future I think taking them three to four hours before the race would be better than two to three hours. During my warmup mile, around 5PM, I still felt the knee pain. By the time the race started at 6PM, the drugs just started doing the job. The rest of the night my knee felt good thanks to the ibuprofen wonder drug. Later I googled “runner knee pain” and found a post that suggested taking ibuprofen after running, but never before. I wonder why?

To top it all off it was a rainy day. The week before the weather was perfect, I was well rested, and in no pain. This week was a wet day, and I may be starting what could be a long time to heal injury. However, the requirement to get into the final standings of the series was to run four of the six races, and I had only run three of them. That was the reason I ran this hilly, crazy course on a rainy day with a gimpy knee. Probably not too bright.

I did not run as hard as I had in the three previous races. The first mile is a down hill stretch I know pretty well. The previous races I covered the mile in 7:30 to 7:40. This one took 8:16. I was holding back.

An unfortunate thing for the race directors was the damage Hurricane Irene did. It caused a change in the course. I kind of liked it though, letting me see different parts of the Bond Brook Recreational area. The second and third mile of this race was different than the first three races I made it to. The course went over a “single track” instead of a “double track.” Not having too much experience running over such ground slowed me down. Mile two went by in 8:44, slower than the 8:00 to 8:30 mile twos in previous runs.

I am happy to say mile three of this race was the fastest mile three of any race in the series. Not that I was setting any records. My previous mile threes were 9:25, 9:19, and 9:33.  This will probably be the only time I will be happy to report that in a 5K race my mile three time was 9:09.

The final stretch, my garmin measured .13 miles, went by in 51 seconds. Total time 27:00. The results can be found here.

I thought/hoped this race series was getting me in great shape. It was over root-sprouting, rock-sticking-out-of-ground terrain.  The course was used in winter for cross country skiers, and designed to have fairly steep hills, which I felt was making me strong as I ran over them with a lot of effort, even though the pace was not that fast. I did not think that the flip side of the series getting me into great shape would be that it may cause an injury. It is too early to draw a conclusion. I enjoyed the series, but may put it in the marathon category. I did one of those, but will not do it again.

Here are the useful to me graphs and maps:

The previous courses had cut back to include more hills. This one was more circular, avoiding some hills. Always a good thing in a race.

The heart rate line looks more like a tempo run effort than a race. It had some dips where I was not pushing. I am ok with the effort.

No big surprises with pace chart.

I have to schedule races in October, November, and December to complete the “run once a month 2011 goal.” I am in the home stretch. Thanks for reading.

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Dover-Foxcroft Pony Pride 5K August 6, 2011


I have raced today’s 5K course four other times: 2001 21:59, 2002 21:27, 2007 20:15, and 2009 20:58. I enjoy trying to predict race times based on past training. 2001 and 2002 were long ago. I do not think that information is applicable. I went all bohemian in 2007, not recording stuff, not wearing a watch, etc. The training worked, it was the fastest time for me. However, it took a big chunk of enjoyment away. I have a list of the workouts I did back then, and duplicated them, as best I could, in 2009 and again this year. I have not been able to get back to 2007′s times.

Comparing the 19 weeks leading up to today’s race to the 2009 race revealed I ran 40 fewer miles, and the miles I ran were slower.

These two pictures accurately describe the race, and my 2011 racing, very well.
Here I am in front of a racer just after the 2.5 mile mark:

Here I am well behind the other racer just after the three mile mark:
To race better, I need to run more and faster.

Here are the mile times, splits, and overall pace:

Mile Time Split
1 6:54 6:54
2 6:47 13:41
3 7:00 20:41
.1 0:35 21:16
Overall Pace: 6:52

The elevation, heart rate, and pace graphs:

The heart rate line surprised me. I do not like to see those dips. I may have coasted down hills, though I do recall increasing pace. Something to think about.

The pace line shows the slow start I had. I was not close enough to the start to go out at the pace I wanted. I don’t understand how the pace line goes up at the end. I thought I had a good kick.

The course:

I have not signed up for a September race.  Will try to find one close to Gardiner/Augusta.

Results: http://www.sub5.com/results/results11/ponypride5K.pdf

Thanks for reading.

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Auburn Emily’s Run 5K July 24, 2011


When we woke up this morning, one of the first things Doreen said was “I have no idea why you put yourself through this!?” Oh boy, I thought. For the most part Doreen keeps her valid racing thoughts to herself.  Every now and then she lets me know how she feels.

I kept wondering why I was doing this as I did my warmup mile in 8:34, and then rubbed elbows with fellow racers after getting in the starting line. I am an introvert. Being with so many people isn’t my cup of tea. Road racing is an individual sport. I think that makes it enjoyable for me.

My goal was to run 6:59 or faster pace. Over the first few hundred yards/meters my Garmin reported 7:40 or so pace.  I started too far back in this crowded event. Eventually the runners thinned out. I was happy to see on my Garmin, and hear from the mile one volunteer, 7:03 as the time of the first mile.

The paragraph above, and other posts, shows my habit of throwing numbers, charts, and statistics around: minutes per mile, heart rate averages, elevations, etc.  That is another answer to Doreen’s, “why?!?!?” question.  Hey, I know my monthly January 2011 weight was 176 pounds.  So far this month, it has been 162 pounds! Isn’t that good to know? :)

Mile two was down hill:After a mostly uphill mile one, mile two was a blast. It was the fun part of the 5K the race director wrote about in their brochure. A good analogy is the classic question, “What is so great about hitting your thumb with a hammer?” The answer: it feels wonderful when you stop. Mile two went by in 6:49. Those down hill, fast miles, especially after uphill, painful miles, is another reason I put myself through the stress and pain of racing.

One bad trend in my 2011 races has been “the fade.” Here are my year-to-date mile splits:

January: 7:21, 7:21, 7:25 (ok, that was pretty good)
February: 7:20, 8:03, 7:45 (slippery roads)
March: 6:57, 7:15, 7:40 (I went out too fast)
April: 7:09, 7:09, 7:27 (last mile up hill)
May: 6:50, 7:00, 7:08 (I thought this and …
June: 6:52, 6:56, 7:10 …this race was well run. Splits don’t agree)

This race had a 7:03 mile one, and then a 6:49 mile two. Mile three? … Stupid hill:Just as I reached the top of the hill, a spectator behind me yelled to a racer, “DEAD MAN WALKING….” I looked ahead to identify the sorry runner. The spectator then said to the runner right behind me, “…. ON TOP OF THE HILL!” Hey, he was talking about me! :) I guess he was right. Disappointingly, but typically this year, the last mile was once again the slowest: 7:25.

Thanks to the “dead man” comment, and a nice down hill/flat end to the race, the final .14 Garmin reported miles went by in 58 seconds, a good strong finish – a 6:54 pace.

The total time was 22:15.  Here are the results. Once again there are great pictures posted here. This is my favorite:

Who wouldn’t want to be in an event with that guy?

Below are the elevation, heart rate, and pace graphs.

The heart rate line has some dips in the down hill mile two. That is sort of forgivable. The pace line shows the slow start, and the fast finish. That third mile uphill was a killer.

Course:

Thanks for reading. My next race is Foxcroft Academy’s Alumni Weekend 5K on August 6.

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Fairfield Joseph’s 5K June 18, 2011


“I would like to have a faster running year in 2011 than I did in 2010. The more I race, the more chances I will have of getting faster.”

That was the first line from my first 2011 race report: January 1 Set the Pace 5K.  In hindsight, “run faster in 2011 than 2010″ is an easy goal. I only raced once in 2010:  The Old Hallowell Days 5K July 17 2010. The time of that race was 22:46.  Today’s race, the sixth of the year, Farfield’s Joseph’s 5K, was 21:38.  I am checking the “faster in 2011″ goal off my list.  Will have to think of another one.  I will continue the strategy: race once every month.

One of the biggest challenges to today’s race was finding it. Man, Fairfield has a lot of ball fields. The address on the race application was 9 School Street. The form mentioned the start and the finish of the race was on the track. There was a baseball field and maybe a soccer or field hockey field around 9 School Street, but I could not find the track.

Several summers ago Steven and I drove to Fairfield every Wednesday to play a pickup soccer game. It was two streets over from School Street. I did not think there was a track in the area, and I was right. I drove over to it, and saw another baseball field. My search for the race continued.

I felt confident the track would be on the street between the one I was on, and the High School’s street.  I was right.  Always a good start to find the race.

Doreen and Steven were riding up separately. I called Doreen and let her know the location.

Having so many ball fields around was great. There happened to be a high school softball game being played on yet another ball field next to the track. I watched one batter before heading out for my warmup, a quick mile in 8 minutes 10 seconds.

The race started promptly at the advertised time: 9:00AM. Doreen and Steven were not there, but I was OK. No warmup or starting pictures the only bad thing.  The race started on the track’s 100 meter starting line, made one loop, went back down the straight away, and then down the road I called Doreen about. As things sometimes work out, Doreen and Steven were driving towards us as we ran by. Doreen tried to snap a picture through the car window, but was not able to catch us.

My top level goal was to break 21 minutes, meaning a 6:45 pace. I started very fast on the track – seeing 6:10 to 6:15 on my garmin. I was in lane one, thinking I was running at goal pace.  The garmin saved me. Many people suggest running without a watch. I’ve done it, and have had success. However, I have also hurt badly due to starting too fast and running out of steam. I was glad for the pace information and eased up.  Mile one went buy in 6:53.

Just after mile one I passed one of those 10 to 14 year old boys. They always come in the same size and shape: short, black hair, and faster than me.  I hoped it would be the last time I saw him, but it wasn’t.  We exchanged places a couple times. He beat me to the finish.

Mile two had a few inclines. The race was advertised as flat, and the lady who gave the pre-race speech said the same thing, thinking we would get fast times. It is relatively flat. It always seemed we were running up a hill, especially over the first half to three-quarters of the race. The second mile, 6:57, was four seconds slower than mile one.  I felt I was working hard. Pacing is a hard thing to learn. Many say even or negative pacing is the way to go. However, if you push your muscles through out the race at the same effort, would the pace slightly slow each mile, resulting in a positive pace?

I felt I was working the same effort during mile three as mile one and two, but the third mile went by in 7:10.  During the last mile the Garmin reported 7:10+- pace, and I made an effort to increase effort. Pace did not improve. I ran an even-effort-race. Perhaps even a bit negative-effort, as I pushed/worked a bit harder during the last mile trying to keep my pace around 7:00 per mile. The pace slowed down, resulting in a positive-pace-race. As my fitness improves, I think I will be able to maintain sub 7 minute pace throughout a 5K by running the same effort as I did today.

I was not able to achieve the high level goal of 6:45 pace. My secondary goal was to run faster than 7:00 pace. Mile 1 = 6:53, mile 2 = 6:57, and mile 3 = 7:10.  That was 21 minutes even. I needed a good kick over the last .1 miles to get below 7:00 pace. I didn’t realize I was so close to my goal. All I wanted to do was catch the short, black haired, faster than me, 10 to 14 year old:

I did not catch him, but covered the last .1 miles in 38 seconds.  Covering 3.1 miles (5K) in 21:38 comes out to a 6:58.71 per mile pace, making my better than 7:00 pace goal.

Doreen and Steven missed the start, but made it before the finish. She got that great shot above. Here are other nice photos of the end.

Just before entering track:

Cool down:

Below are the elevation, heart rate, and pace graphs.

The elevation axis went from 120 to 210 – 90 feet difference. That is better than these 2011 races: South China: 240 to 380 – 140 feet difference; Falmouth: 100 to 240 – 140 feet difference;  Topson 0 to 140 – 140 feet difference; and Brunswick 20 to 200 – 180 feet difference. The Fairfield race was flat, but the elevation line did go up and down quite a bit, I thought.

This is a good looking pace line I think. It does climb, but not as bad as the last few races.

Here is the course:

Race results: link

My next race is Emily’s Run in Auburn July 24.

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