Sunday, July 15, 2007
Race report: Nissan 10 Miler
This race was a 5K last year, which I ran on a really hot Friday. Today, it was a cool 16 degrees by race time, perfect conditions, especially for a summer day. The race is perfect on the calendar for fall marathoners who are now tackling longer distances, and that's what I wanted to use it for: a quasi tuneup race that I could fit into my long run plans.
Last night, I was out late at a wedding reception, so when the alarm went off at 4:30 a.m., I decided another hour of sleep was in order. By 5:45 a.m., though, I was showered, my gear was ready and I was having an English muffin with peanut butter. I was out the door by 6:45 a.m., with a vague idea of either taking a cab, taking public transit, or going for a warmup run.
I opted for the run, and did a slow 2.5K jog with my backpack to the race site. It was already buzzing, but still early, so I checked in my bag and proceeded to do another 2K run. The goal mileage for today was 14 miles, so I wanted to fit as many as the 4 extra miles (6.5K) before and after the race.
The race went off with little fanfare, and I was, for the first time, playing it conservative. Training run, I kept on telling myself. The first few kilometres were done in 4:45/4:50 pace, which is on or a little slower than a marathon pace. I was happy to see it was a very managable pace that barely challenged me aerobically. Tell you what, it's an odd and nice feeling not to be huffing and puffing through the first part of a race, when most runners look to jockey for position and get themselves in a good place.
Much of the course takes place on my daily training ground, so it was as close to a home course as I could get. The lonely stretch of industrial land is so familiar to me. I don't enter the Leslie Spit and the Tommy Thompson park, though, so the run though there was interesting sightseeing.
I felt strong and was behind a pack of runners who also seemed to be intentionally taking it easy and I quickly made up my game plan for the rest of the run: at the 10K mark (with less than 4 miles to go), I would turn the latter part of the race into an LT run, or run it at my half marathon pace. I patiently waited for the 10K mark, which was also the site of a water station, and upped the pace. I quickly lost the pack, and started aiming at runners ahead of me.
As I was telling Fran later, it was such an amazing feeling having the extra kick at the end -- I felt myself going from easy running to racing form: the strides were getting quicker and I felt the heart, the lungs adjusting to the extra effort. I set my own pace since I was now running 4:30ish pace along a field that were doing 4:45s and slower. I can't recall, but I believe I may have past at least 40 runners in the last 3K.
My focus was to run the race hard and make the last kilometre the fastest. It was.
So that's it. A race within a race. I know I can PR at this distance at 1:13 ish, but this was a great test of pacing and patience.
After the race, I got to finally meet Sonia and Fran. Also met Amanda, Sonia's friend. Jelly came along (she didn't run today) and we went out for breakfast to trade running stories, find out more about each other. It was great, I've followed them through the past year so it was good to put faces to words...
The splits: 16:22K (GPS probably went a little wonky at the beginning or under the bridge)
2K: 4:46 (9:31)
3K: 4:50 (14:21)
4K: 4:51 (19:12)
5K: 4:50 (24:02)
6K: 4:52 (28:53)
7K: 4:53 (33:47)
8K: 4:46 (38:32)
9K: 4:45 (43:17)
10K: 4:40 (47:57)
11K: 4:25 (52:22)
12K: 4:30 (56:42)
13K: 4:35 (1:01:27)
14K: 4:36 (1:06:03)
15K: 4:37 (1:10:41)
16K: 4:17 (1:14:58)
.22K: 49:87 (1:15:48)
Final time: 1:15:48
Place overall: 194/1192 (83.7 percentile)
Place in men: 161/630 (74.4 percentile)
Place in age group: 28/92 (69.5 percentile)