Sunday, June 23, 2013

Fitzgerald Lager 5k Run, Glen Ridge, NJ. 6/23/13

Right now my focus is to build volume safely over the next many many weeks.  I have not been working on speed, with the exception of that first silly mile at the 5k this past Thursday.   I was hoping to log about 30 miles this weekend before I got to the Lager Run.  Logging the miles were more important to me than running fast.  I actually only managed 27+ miles between Sat and today, which is close enough.

Today, I ran my first run late in the morning abt 10:30 am, after we took Enzo swimming before it got too hot for him.  It was about 88 degrees when Sid and I ran our 6.5.  It was slow, about 10 minutes per mile.  I was starving after, so I ate and waited a bit before I rounded out my mileage to 10 by running another 3.5, also easy.  After running some errands, I made my way up to the Lager run.

I find running in hot weather really hard on my body (as many people likely do) and during my 1 mile warm up, I could feel how tired my legs were.  5k's terrify me because I get about 3 minutes of running before the suffering starts.  I knew the course was fast, so at least I knew the suffering would be as "good" as it gets.  I was hoping for some rain to cool things down, but no such luck.  South Jersey was getting the weather and I was racing north.

This race is huge. 1148 runners lines up at the start.  I looked for "my people", the runners I tend to end up running with (lately it has been Karl L., Ben T., Jim O. Jamie B. ) and I seeded myself near Karl.

Photo by Mark Nyhan
The Gun Goes Off.
I heard mile 1 was declined, then mile 2 was rolling mostly uphill, followed by a mostly declined mile 3,  ending with about half a lap on the track to finish it.  The course is basically flat with some mild rollers.  Regardless of the road part of the course, I just love Track finishes!

I tried to not make the same mistake as I did on Thursday, by pummeling myself in the first declined mile.  I watch the pace on my Garmin and we are all sub-6. (LOL!)  I try to slow it down and find it very hard to hold back while watching people I run with or that I am faster than pulling away.  I think about being disciplined and I ease off the pace.  M1: 6:20  

As soon as we hit the 1 mile clock we start to go through the rolling mile. The course is not significantly hilly by any means, but mile 2 seemed to have most of the up hills.  I try to stay steady while keeping something in the tank for mile 3.  If mile 3 is fast, I want to use it.

I also want to have something left to use on the track!  There is nothing better than pretending to be in a track meet and running as fast as possible.  I like to imagine I am back in high school running the 400 meters, when I used to run so hard that I would black out at the end.

Photo by Mark Nyhan
I am feeling a little weak and tired in mile 2.  I try to tell myself that it because of the inclines and I will be fine once over them.  I can see two ladies that I would like to be in front of since this is a 700 pts race.  I start to think about my strategy.  They have some distance on me and I know I will be working to get to them.  They are running together.  Based upon the way I feel to have a shot at beating them, I have two choices.  I either have to pass them with authority or I need to get up there, sit behind them, hope I can hang on, and if I can then try to kick past on the track.   As I think about it,  I focus on trying to run a bit more relaxed (since I catch a glimpse of my shadow and it does not look pretty). I hit M2 6:41.

My two mile time is 13:06, which is 6 seconds slower than my 2 mile time from Thursday, where I ran 21:00.  I knew this finish was faster than Thursday's last mile, so as we hit some declines, I pick up the pace. I was told there was an incline again before the track so as I approach the two ladies, I know I need to put distance between us before the incline for me to have a shot at holding my position on the track.  I go for it.  I manage to pass both ladies by about 2.6 miles and now I am running scared, which is kind of inspiring! :)

I hit the track and I can't tell if they are coming on me.  I don't need to look back because I know I am running hard.  Once on the track, we hit the M3 6:27.  

I hear Elaine A. cheer me on.  This is special because I am already in "make-believe-I-am-in -high school-running-the-400 meters" mode and Elaine was my 4x400 meter relay buddy. So hearing Elaine cheer track side was just perfect!

With one tenth to go I run right up on two guys running side-by-side around the back stretch turn.  I have been taught to hug the turns and it goes against my everything in my being to try to run out in lane 2 to pass two guys running the same speed as me. They are pushing the pace so I don't think I actually can pass them and that would leave me out in lane 2 for no reason, but don't know if the ladies are coming up on me or not.   So I start calling out "Go. Go. Go." to the guys I am behind and we all run harder!

Photo by Karl Leitz
From there it is all a blur.  I recall running down the back stretch stride-for-stride with one guy in white as the other pulled away. I believe the guy in white finds another gear at the very end that I don't have and he beats me in. The kick was awesome!  Final .11 in 36 seconds (a 5:27 pace)

As soon I stop, I cant catch my breath. Someone hands me a towel soaked in ice water and it feels great!  But I feel dizzy, I still cant catch my breath, and I feel incredible unsteady. The med tent guy decides I need to be walked over to the tent where I can sit down.  I put up no objection.  I get to the med tent and someone pours two bottles of ice cold water over my head, which helped a lot.  A few short minutes of sitting and I was up, able to breathe and back out onto the track to cheer!

Time: 20:12
Overall Place: 125 out of 1148
Gender Place: 7 out of 500
Age Group: 2 out of 140 
AG Award:  A hefty beer mug. :)

1 comment: