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. With that philosophy/plan/thinking, today, Doreen, Steven, and I drove to Camden Maine, and I raced the “Set the Pace” 5K.
Before heading out, I searched my blog to see what supplies I should bring. I remember writing a bunch of things in one post. The only thing I remember was “Mountain Dew.” Searching for those words brought me to the Dover Foxcroft’s Alumni 5K that happened August 4, 2007. That post reminded me that “running shoes, change of clothes, three bananas, two energy bars, two gu’s, two water bottles, a Gatorade, and two Mountain Dews” may be useful. I didn’t bring all that, but it was helpful. A couple things to add to the list: towel and deodorant. When I search for things to bring in the future, hopefully this will help. Oh, and good luck!
It was a warm day, in the middle to upper 40’s. Maybe even getting into the 50’s. That helped Doreen’s and Steven’s comfort level. I don’t think they had too much fun though. I thank them for taking all the nice photos. Here is one before I warmed up:
I did not need a hat, mittens, or sweatpants. The blue sky in the background was not misleading. It was a warm day for January 1. I did a one mile warm up run in eight minutes, and decided to lose one layer of clothing: a t-shirt I had under the 2004 World Champion Red Sox shirt I wore. All you Yankee fans take note!!!!
Here’s an interesting photo Steven took of the start of the race. Looks like people don’t know which way the race is going. At least one person is pointing in every direction.
We figured it out.
The race was scheduled to start at 11:11 AM. It was a bit late, but got started around that time. An aggressive goal for me would be to run 21:59 or better. However, a more realistic goal would be 22:59. The pace I thought I would start at was 7:30. Too slow for my realistic goal, but good strategy to start conservatively, and plan to pick up the pace as the race goes on. Of course I started around 7:00 minutes per mile. I am not good at managing the pace at the start.
During the first mile I remember being in a pack, pulling in front, thus feeling I was “winning.” After a bit I could not hear the people behind me, but saw a pack 20 to 30 meters in front. “I am losing” was the new feeling/sensation. I continued to run at the same effort, pulling even, and then ahead of the people at the end of that pack.
The first mile ended up taking 7:21, faster than the 7:30 goal pace, but slower than the 7:00 minute pace at the beginning. I was running pretty much by myself, though I was picking people off every now and then. Mile two also took 7:21. I think it is cool when that happens, running different miles in a race at the same pace. The average heart rate of mile one was 151. It shot up to 178 by the end of mile two. Looking at the heart rate graph of the race, it appears some of the heart rate data in the first mile was bad. A graph appears at the end of this post shows the anomaly.
The course was a loop, with a little jaunt towards the middle/end, …
… and marked at each mile. When I got to mile marker one, my Garmin had 1.08 or so miles. Mile marker two was similar: the Garmin had 2.1something. I was ok with that; a long course is better than a short one. Then a bad thing happened. The third marker showed up, and the Garmin reported 2.88 miles. What!!!???!! The short mile was completely unexpected due to the other miles being long.
There was not anything to be done. I kept running strong. When the Garmin hit mile three, it had me cover that mile in 7:25. I wasn’t paying attention to mile splits during the race. I remember one time the Garmin reported I was running 8:00 minute pace so I sped up. Most of the time I kept glancing at the watch out of habit. I guess I was getting the feedback I needed, but was not consciously processing the data.
Usually at the end of a race, I finish with a sprint. Due to my thought that the course was short, I didn’t kick hard at the end. The Garmin reports an extra .05 miles in 22 seconds. That comes out to 7:23 pace. All those miles – 7:21, 7:21, 7:25, and :22 comes out to 22:31.
Garmin’s are not 100% accurate. The course may be correct. Even if it was short, it was only by .05 miles according to my Garmin. I suspect the third mile marker was a bit short.
My realistic goal was to run a 5K (3.1 miles) in 22:59. According to my Garmin I ran 3.05 miles in 22:31. I think I could have covered another .05 miles in 28 or less seconds. I will say my realistic 22:59 goal was accomplished.
This is a well done race, and one I plan to do in the future.
Here are a couple photos of the end:
Yeah, it looks like I am working, but am I really? I think I left a little on the course today.
Here are the useful, to me, heart rate, elevation, and pace graphs:
I think the heart rate dip before the half-mile is bad data. I don’t think I let up. The heart rate went down a bit at the end, corresponding to the disappointing feeling I had when thinking the course was short. The down hill last mile probably had more to do with the heart rate drop.
Hmmm.. maybe right before/after mile one I could have used the hill to gain some time. Need to think about that in the future.
Race results put up 1/3/2011. I came in 29 of 146, with a posted time of 22:23.
Thanks for reading. Next race will be soon, I hope!