Saturday, May 21, 2011

5-21-11 YMCA Spring Run/Public Agency Challenge 8K

8th year in a row here. I've done the 2 mile race a couple of times, they used to have a 10K, but today I am back to the 8K distance. The course has been fixed since the last time I ran it three years ago and should be much closer to the correct distance although not certified. The race was moved to the week after Capital City races and it seems like a much smaller event than in previous years. The races have a little fewer than usual, but the walk and the Public Agency competition seems much smaller. I only recognize two other runners; ten year old Dylan Miller and Martinho, a Club Oly runner who is about 19 years older than me, but beat me in the full marathon by 4 minutes just six days ago. I have felt great all week but have not run fast in a long time and expect the effects of the previous marathon to show up during the race. So no pressure today and I tell Dylan not to worry about me, I am sure that he will beat me. Its cloudy with a little drizzle that stops just before the race begins. Great running conditions. Day of race registration is easy and costs $21 with the no T-shirt option. I have enough T-shirts!!

Start - Only a few fast guys want to line up at the front and with a nice wide road and small contingent of runners I am able to place myself just behind the start line in this non chip timed event. We start right on time. I had a short but good warm up and am able to run fast from the start. Heading downhill helps too. Flying down to the lake at 6:30/mile pace. Now on level ground and slowing but still going faster than planned. I hope for a 36:30 finish time, which will calculate to be my fastest "age graded V-Dot" result of the year and boost me up in the standings of the Brooks ID program Race Series. Just by running this race I get one point.

Mile 1 - Catch one guy and we actually talk a little bit. At this pace it is hard to have much of a conversation and I need to focus on what I am doing. But we both are relaxed and settling in for the rest of the race. Eventually he speeds up and I can not keep up.

Mile 3 - Have been gradually gaining on Dylan. I am going much faster than I expected and he is not having the best day. I am able to pass him. Martinho is behind me somewhere. Would be unexpected and cool to beat them both. We shall see, but here comes the uphill.

Mile 3.5 - Tough grind up the hill and my pace is slowing for sure. But so is everyone else.

Mile 4 - Back to flat and soon the long downhill on Capitol Blvd. Passing lots of 8K walkers who started earlier. Have to dodge around some of them who are walking four abreast. Reel in one more runner and put on a big surge to pass him and break away from him. I think it was a little risky to pick up the pace like that, to an all out sprint that I know I can not maintain, but I did it anyway. Now I do slow some, but still feel good and the downhill is here.

Finish - Hold pace and finish strong. No one to work with in the last bit. Just kept passing walkers. Very pleased with my time.

12th place of 101
Race # 236

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