Dover-Foxcroft Pony Pride 5K August 6, 2016

Limped  into this race. My right hip is not quite right, but not too painful. This is the last race of the year so decided to go ahead with it. Finished in 23:27.  Garmin had mile one in 7:27, mile two 8:20, and then .96 miles in 7:40.  The race was not 3.1 miles, but 2.96 miles.




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Auburn Emily’s Run 5K July 24, 2016

This year’s race season started in April, and then a May race. I found a June 5K, but got crossed up registering on-line. A message appeared stating the transaction did not go through. However, an email arrived stating the credit card order processed. I contacted the officials of the June race, and they confirmed I was NOT registered. Some time later, I got a reminder email about the race. I didn’t want to spend extra running $ in June, so ended up not racing that month. Turned out I did not get charged.

For the July race, I signed up for Emily’s Run 5K in Auburn. A bit ago I searched my running blog and was surprised to see I ran this one in 2011. I completely forgot! After reading the report, I am happy to write I remembered it. I became discouraged thinking no way would I run as fast as I did back then. That turned out to be true.

In 2011 I described mile one this way: “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 only thing in common this year was “I started too far back in this crowded event.” I didn’t have a goal, runners did not thin out at all during the first mile, and mile one went by this time in 8:12 on my watch; 8:23 net time that was called out at the mile one marker.

Mile one in 2011 was at race pace, but mile one this year was more of a fast tempo run. Mile two in 2011 went by in 6:49, while 2016 took 7:23. I think the 7:23 is my current race pace. Mile two was where runners thinned out this year. I was able to pass many. 2011 race results show 496 finished. Before this year’s race, and an announcement was made that over 600 people were racing today. The results were posted quickly, and showed 603 participants.

As described in the 2011 report, mile two and the last part of the race is downhill, and the rest is uphill. A tough course. Mile three went by in 7:25 in 2011 and 7:40 this year. In 2011 I was struggling to keep the pace and not get passed. This year I was able to pass quite a few, and felt I should apologize because I had run so slow during mile one.

The race ended on a track. I usually am in the 40-second range for the last tenth of a mile. This race is a bit long as I’ve ended 20 to 30 seconds slower both times. Overall feeling after this race was, “why am I still doing this?”  Bummer.

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Gray Patriot 5K May 21 2016

The second race of 2016 was 30 seconds slower than my first race. Bummer. I could not find online race results for the first race, but my Garmin watch recorded 22:55.  Today’s race results were quickly posted, my time being 23:25.  I stopped my Garmin watch a bit over one second later as it recorded 23:26.8.

Doreen and I got up at 6AM, my normal work day start time. The night before I packed supplies for today, well documented in other posts: running outfit, change of clothes, two Gatorades, two sodas, towel, and deodorant.  I was happy to remember my running sneakers, but will say I was just about backing out the driveway when I remembered them. A thing to add to the list that Doreen suggested: a plastic grocery bag to store stuff. I don’t know how she does it, but she always sees something I am missing, and corrects it for me.

We arrived in Gray a bit after 8AM and parked. Doreen was not too fond of the parking. It was on a mowed field. Luckily the grass was very dry. I made the trip to the registration and then back to the car by myself, but then Doreen decided to join me at the start of the race. Eventually Steven showed. Doreen got a lot of photos and Steven got one nice video.

It is very flat, and if anything more down hill then up. Mile one was 7:22 and mile two and three were both 7:35. According to the race results, I covered the last .1 miles in 53 seconds, which would be a disappointing 8:50 pace.  My Garmin watch had .14 miles after the third mile, covering the distance in 55 seconds, which would be, I think, a more accurate 6:33 pace.

How is this for some creative running calculations: my Garmin watch recorded the April race as 3.08 miles, 22:55, for a 7:26 pace.  The Garmin watch recorded the May race as 3.14 miles, 23:27, for a 7:28 pace, only two seconds per mile slower. If I use 3.1 miles the April pace is 7:23 while the May pace is a whole 10 seconds slower, 7:33. I just wish I could get the Gray race to come out faster some how.

It is a very big race.  I came in 103rd place, and there were a total of 720 runners,

Here is a screen grab of Steven’s video from the start:

startHere is picture Doreen took at the end:


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Unity Unity College Spring 5K April 16 2016

I started running almost 15 years ago, April 23, 2001. This race falls just before my running anniversary. The first two times I ran the race, 2002 and 2003, I was able to achieve the goal I set the previous year. My first goal was to run a 5K faster than seven minutes per mile. That comes to 21:40 or better. The fastest 2001 race: 21:59.  In 2002 I finished this race in 21:33, 6:58 pace, two whole seconds ahead of goal.

My 2002 hope was a less than 21 minute 5K. However, I did not get much faster. An August race ended in 21:27. I fell in love with this race in 2003, when I finished in 20:18! Being naive, I thought this was how it was going to work: set a goal and if I don’t get it, don’t worry, it will happen at this race the following year. Well, it stopped working. 2003 I set a sub 20 minute 5K goal. I finished this race in 2004 in 20:06, and 2005 in 20:04. That’s as fast as I got.

This year I ran mile one in 7:07, mile two in 7:38, mile three 7:34, and the last .1 miles in 35 seconds, finishing in 22:55. That is the slowest time I have run this course: 4/15/2007, 20:28; 4/19/2008, 21:01; 4/18/2009, 20:21; 2010 to 2014 did not run; and 2015, 22:06.
In 2001 I was 35 years old. This being my 15th running year means I turn the big 5-0 this year. Doreen snapped this appropriate picture during that nice down hill stretch at the start of the race. I laughed out loud after zooming in and noticed the sign above my head.




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Dover-Foxcroft Pony Pride 5K August 1, 2015

The day before this race, Friday, Doreen drove to Dover with her parents.  I went for my Friday run directly after work, and then drove to Dover by myself without first going home. I packed all the supplies I needed in the morning.  I had a rotten meal at the Newport Pizza Hut – service and the food stunk, still makes me mad – and eventually made it to Dover around 9PM.  Race started at 8AM the next day. We spent the night in my in-laws camper.

The day of the race, Saturday, I arrived a little after 7AM, and happy to see Gary Larson again. With his niece and another runner, we did a 10+ minute warmup:

warmupAt 8AM the race director, George Rolleston, called everyone together and fumbled through the funny, but pertinent  story about letting someone know if you DNF.  There were 87 people signed up.  If someone is not accounted for at the end of the race, desperate measures will be taken to find the person, including calling their home number and telling them, ‘YOUR <relationship name>  IS MISSING!!!!!’

Everyone then got in line,

Startand we were off.

Of the 87 runners, 15 to 20 got in front of me at the start, including Gary Larson and his niece.  I ended up passing all but four. Pretty high placement, and actually won my age group, winning a subway gift card!

Mile one 7:14, mile two 7:23, mile three 7:32, and last .1 miles 35 seconds; total time 22:44; overall pace 7:20. Not really a well executed race. Even pace is the way to go, and this was not that. However, I am happy with the last three years times:

Year       Total
2015       22:44
2014       23:17
2013       23:26

My training is going well.

During the last 3/4 mile of the race, the young (less than 15 year old) runner in front of me stopped at Winter Street, turned around, looked at me, and threw his arms up in the air. I gestured ‘go left’ and yelled “left! left!”

When I got to the turn and started running down Winter street, I yelled “take the next right!” The runner stopped, turned around, and started running back to me. Oh no!  I said “Stop Stop – you were right!”  I pointed to the next turn and said “that’s the next turn.”

We did that the rest of the race. Poor guy probably lost 30 or more seconds, and ran several extra yards. Poor me could not catch him even with him running in circles every few seconds.

At the end of the race, this picture was taken of the people who came 5, 6, and 7th place in the race: a 70 year old runner who will be doing his 100th half marathon on Thanksgiving day (6), me (5), and Gary who also turned 70 this year (7.)

OverHere is a picture of me waiting for the awards:

AwardsHere are the results

A very surprising announcement was made at the end. Next year’s race will have a new course, starting at the High School not the YMCA. This was the 18th year in a row this course was run, and I have done it 8 times. Oh well, nothing stays the same. Maybe next year’s course will be similar to the High School Cross Country course I ran back in 1982.

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Richmond Richmond Area Health Center 5K July 25 2015

Looking at coolrunning’s race results I an amazed at the number of races that happened today, July 25, 2015:  Friends of the Belgrade Library 5K,  Casco Days Road Race, Lobster Roll 5 KM (Boothbay Harbor,) Down East Sunrise Trail Relay (Eastport,) MMCC 5K Trot for Autism (Lewiston,) Milbridge Days 5K,  Acton/Shapleigh Lions Club 5K, Peaks Island 5 Mile, and Richmond Area Health Center 5K.

I ran the Richmond race due to it being the lowest entry fee I could find this month. Funny though, when I was looking for July races, I didn’t see any of the other ones listed in the race schedule I checked out.  It doesn’t look like many decide what race to run based on entry price. I am sure most of the other races today were more expensive than this one, but the Richmond race had 50 runners while most of the other races had 100 or a lot more runners.

I enjoyed this race, though it was very tough, and had no mile markers. I arrived soon after 7AM and registered. I went for my five minute out and back run, ended up being 1.1 miles in 10 minutes 6 seconds. When I got back, a truck was placed in front of the entrance and exit of the lot I used, so I couldn’t get my car out. I figured it would be moved, maybe after the race started, so I didn’t say anything.  I saw someone drive across grass to get into the parking lot, and hoped I wouldn’t have to do that to get out.

At 7:45AM a call went out to the 1 mile racer/walkers. 10 to 15 people lined up, a horn was blown, a young girl ran out at a quick pace, and the others walked after her in a “look what that crazy girl” is doing way. I am not sure where the milers finished. I ran around a bit, trying to decide if I should wear my knee wrap or not. I used it today.

At 8AM we got in line to start. It was right in front of the truck that blocked the lot I mistakenly parked in. I wish it was labeled “no parking.” The starter set off a loud blaster thing and we were off. The first mile was cool. It weaved around some cross streets, cut across a dirt/grass path, and went down this very steep and fast-running down hill. I was happy I selected the race. But then the rest of mile one, and pretty much the remainder of the race was up hill. Mile one was the fastest: 7:02.

Most of the rest of the race was uphill, but not all of it. I tried to run the same pace up and down hills. Other than mile one where I took advantage of the down hill in that mile. During mile two, and some of mile three, I traded places with another male runner. Going down hills he quickly passed me. Going up hill I was able to catch and pass him.  Running like that is motivating and kind of fun. The runner spoke to me at the end of the race, and we mentioned our “battle.” Mile two was slower than mile one, 7:29.

Mile three still seemed mostly uphill, with a few down hill stretches. During one of the last down hill sections I heard a runner catching up to me. I assumed it was the same person. However, I was surprised a different runner pulled even with me: a youngish female.  We ran together for a half mile or so, but I am happy to say I finished ahead of her. Mile three went by a little faster than mile two: 7:25.

Endomomdo reported 3.08 total miles, so I think the course was a little short; not the 3.1 miles a 5K should be. The end results (link) showed I finished the entire race in 22:23, so I covered the distance from the end of mile three to the end of the race in 27 seconds. Oh well, I’ll take it as good progress. The last two races this year were 22:49 and 22:46. Net elevation for those two races were 32 and 16 feet uphill, respectively. This race was 35 feet uphill, but most of the down hill came in mile one. I feel good about the effort I gave in this race: 20+ seconds faster than the two previous races.

After the race was over and I got cleaned up, I had to go as Doreen and I were going to visit family.  The truck was still blocking me in. I asked a volunteer if the truck could be moved or if it would be OK if I drove across the lawn to get out. She tried to stare me down, to see if I would do/say something else. I have seen enough cop shows to know to not talk and just smile and wait for a response. She finally said if I don’t drive across the grass I wouldn’t be able to leave. I thanked her for giving me the ok to do it, and made my get away.

Here is the course:

RichmondCourseHere are the elevation and pace graphs:

RichmondGraphDoreen didn’t make it to the race, but she took this picture of me as I headed out. She said I look much better before the race than after it

Gardiner-20150725-00608Next race is the Dover-Foxcroft Pony 5K next Saturday August 1. I plan to send the application in this week, where it will cost $12. If I register the day of race it will be $15, which is still less than most races go for.

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Augusta Amy Buxton Underdog Jog 5K June 13 2015

The fastest 5K I have done this year was the Unity College Spring 5K April 18. I did not write the total time. I wrote the splits: 6:58, 7:33, 7:04, and then 31 seconds for the last tenth of a mile. Oh well, I’ll write the total time for that 5K here: 22:06.

The second 5K this year was the Run For Independence 5K on May 17. For some reason I am not writing total times.  I’m writing splits: 7:15, 7:42, and 7:36. I did not record the final .1 miles.  Probably because the Endomondo GPS program I use only recorded 16 seconds. I suspect the course was short. Endomondo recorded 3.07 mile. Total time: 22:49.

I am not writing total race times, but am obsessing about entry fees this year. I picked this race because it was the lowest one I found this month of June: $15. That was the same as the Run For Independence, but not a low a the $10 Spring 5K. All other races this year have higher, some much higher, entry fees.

I am still interested in other numbers. For example, the April race had a 331 foot raise and 530 foot drop in elevation; 199 net down hill.  That helped that fast time! The May race: 276 ascent and 260 descent; 16 foot net up hill. That explains why race #2 was slower than #1. This race?  284 up; 252 down; 32 net up hill. I’m taking this as evidence I am in better shape now than last month. Even though the elevation profile was slightly more challenging, I finished a few seconds faster: 22:46. Three seconds is three seconds.  The splits were 7:14, 7:43, 7:14, and 35 seconds. It also appears to be a true 5K. Endomondo reported 3.1 miles.

Doreen was not available to travel to this race. I showed up at the Augusta High School, and had a challenge finding the registration booth. After I found it, a couple people asked me where it was so I was not the only one.  I went for a warm up; five minutes out and back. Ended up being 1.16 miles:

20150614warmupThe course starts the same way my warmup went. Out .5 mile and then back for the first mile. Then it travels around a loop.

I had 30 minute or so before the race started. A person I worked with was there and we talked about the course. He ran it earlier in a training run. He mentioned that after the first mile there is a big hill that will be tough.

Before the race everyone was called off the side of the road, and the race official gave a nice speech, thanking companies that donated supplies and thanking everyone that contributed to the cause the race supported.

We then moved to the starting line, and we were off. I started too far back, and had to weave a lot.  The flat mile one made for a fast mile 7:14.

Mile two was the hill my co-worker warned me about. After mile one, the race turned left. There was the uphill climb, but I thought the warning my co-worker gave was an over reaction.  Until I made it over the first knoll. It was one of those hills where you don’t see the whole thing right off the bat.  By the time I made it to top, I understood the concern. It was brutal. Mile two –  7:43.

Mile three,  7:14, the same as mile one. Nice down hill and flat sections. The last .1 mile was a quick 35 seconds.  Results are here. I came in 19th place, 13 second behind place number 18, but the same time as the person who came in 20th.  That was an exciting finish, and I congratulated and thanked the racer for doing so well and pushing me to a fast finish.


My next race is July 25 Richmond Area Health Center 5K $15 no fee at check out

I would have done one of these, if the entry fee was lower than Richmond’s:

July 4 Winthrop Friends of 4th 5K $22

July 18 Old Hallowell Day 5K Road Race $20

July 26 Pittston Fair Fun 5k $20

Thanks for reading

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