It has been a long time since I wrote a race report. I’m not sure if I remember how to do it. Thought I’d give it a shot though:
Yesterday I ran the Gardiner 5 Mile Road Race. It was the last race I did before I started those round of operations last year. I’m in better shape than I was last year at this time, but apparently not like I was in 2003 – 2004.
The plan was to run by heart rate level, keep the monitor reading between 165 and 170 for the first 2.5 mile loop, and then let it creep above 170 for the last 2.5 mile loop. I hoped to be around 35 minutes total. That didn’t happen – before mile one was over my heart rate was above 170. Oh well, I had started a little conservatively, but passed two people in the first mile. I didn’t want to be one of those “pass people early and then be passed before the end of mile one” runners, so I kept running at the same level.
I ran the first mile in 7:22. That was the pace I thought I was running even though my heart rate was high, so I was happy my pacing sense was accurate. I knew I could run a little faster due to some tempo runs I had been doing, so I pushed my pace up a bit for mile two. My heart rate stayed in the lower 170’s so everything was good. Mile two took 7:10. It wasn’t my goal pace of 7:00 but I was pleased. I was running at the effort I thought I could, and the pace was what I kept telling myself I was running at.
The 2.5 mile mark was near where we started. It was a loop around a residential area in Gardiner. Sort-of, kind-of flat, but more rolling with small up and down hills. They yelled the 2.5 mile split to everyone, and mine was 18 minutes plus some seconds. 18 + 18 = 36 so I knew 35 minutes and something probably wasn’t going to happen. I wanted to run each mile faster than the previous one, so I kept pushing my pace. My heart rate crept above 175. Mile three was in 7:12. I thought that was ok. It was two seconds slower than mile two.
Mile three I started to get a little flaky. Every mile was marked by a yellow cone. The course was two loops, but the loop was a little less than 2.5 miles. So the end of the race was about a quarter mile farther down the road than where the race started. This made the mile markers skewed. For example, when you start running, after a little bit you see the end of the race and it is marked “mile 5.” As you run straight before you get to the first corner you see mile marker 3 (this is when you start the second loop.) Mile marker one eventually appears. Well anyway, when I was on mile 3, I was thinking mile marker 4 was positioned where mile marker 2 actually was. It’s a little confusing to write about, but long story short, when I was racing I came up to the mile four marker about a half a mile before I expected it! I lost concentration during this mile. Mile four was 7:17. Not too much slower than the previous miles, but disappointing.
Ok, I only had one mile to go. My heart rate was in the upper 170’s lower 180’s, but I knew I could run hard the last mile. Around a half mile left the person behind me started to speed up. I sped up to. However, the person passed me. “Racing” him the last half mile helped make it the fastest mile of the race 7:02. I’m happy to say I passed him with 100 yards to go or so. The total time was 36:06. The average heart rate was 179.
I came in 9 out of 50 racers, 2nd in my age group. I would have won the age group just below or above. It rots turning 40!
Here is the 2.5 mile loop that we ran twice: http://www.runningmap.com/?id=16707