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St. Paddy's Day Parade Race 5k Run/Walk - Run5k

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Jackson, Mississippi
United States
Mississippi Track Club
60F / 16C
Total Time = 25m 34s
Overall Rank = 243/803
Age Group = 45-49
Age Group Rank = 9/38
Pre-race routine:

Got up a bit late, so did not get to do my standard yoga/PF e-cises, but did manage to get some coffee and a banana.
Event warmup:

Started with easy 5 min run, then set of DWUs, followed by 3x3 min tempo/1 min easy, and another easy 5 min to start line. I should have done striders, but it was crowded and confused, and I wanted to get in a good spot for the start.
  • 25m 34s
  • 3.11 miles
  • 08m 13s  min/mile

I knew it would be a good idea to line up as close to the front as I dared because it was a crowded race and I suspected a lot of folks wouldn't know the concept of self seeding. I wanted a good, fast start and not have to weave in and out of a lot of people, so I could, hopefully, run under 26 minutes. I spotted a lady I know who is faster than I am, so tucked in a few people behind her hoping to keep her in sight and pull me along. Unfortunately, as soon as we started, I lost her and never saw her again until after the race was over (she finished about 1 min in front of me).

So, the gun goes off, and the start wasn't too bad. First half minute was a bit slow, but since the first mile was mostly downhill, I was able to settle into a strong pace that felt easy rather quickly. We turned and headed back toward the start/finish, so a bit uphill here. I concentrated on keeping the pace up, relaxing my shoulders, and breathing evenly. I wanted to catch up to this one woman in front of me who was running so comfortably and easy, it didn't look as if she was going very fast at all. Never caught her. Oh well.

Around the halfway mark, the course turned into a roller. Nothing long and nothing steep, but enough to require staying focused and strong. At about 2 miles, I caught up to a lady I had been chatting with in the starting crowd. She was coming off an injury but had remarked, when healthy, she usually ran between 24 and 25 minutes. Knowing that the body will do what it's used to, I figured she wasn't far off her "normal" pace, so figured I was probably right on track. I encouraged her when I passed her, and she did the same for me. The time off began to take its toll on her and she fell back after that.

We went up a couple of more small hills and I really wanted to ease up a bit. I felt the mild nausea I often get on shorter races when I actually push myself. I tried not to slow the pace and kept pushing. When we were about 1/2 mile from the finish, I tried to increase the pace...not sure I actually got any faster, but the feeling that I might throw up was stronger.

We turned the corner onto State St., went up the last small rise, and then downhill to the finish line. I could see the clock ticking through 25 minutes...10 seconds...15 seconds...and tried with all my might to sprint (not happening). When I finally ran into the crowd backed up in the finish chute, the clock was ticking over 25:55. I was happy to be under 26 min, but a bit deflated that it wasn't a bit faster. Then, when I checked my watch and it had me at 26+ mins, I started wonder what the time really was. If it actually was over 26 min, I was going to be pretty disappointed.

By Monday morning the results were posted. Imagine my surprise when I saw 25:34 listed by my name. I double and triple checked. I checked other people's times, and they were consistent with the time they said they had finished. So, booyah!
What would you do differently?:

I felt as if I ran a good race. Not sure I would do anything differently.
Post race
Warm down:

About 7 min easy running.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Maybe could have been a few seconds faster with a faster, less crowded start.

Last updated: 2010-02-23 12:00 AM
00:25:34 | 03.11 miles | 08m 13s  min/mile
Age Group: 9/38
Overall: 38/803
I used my new Tech4o watch and apparently I need to re-calibrate it. It measured the course at 2.7 miles. Plus it had my total time over 26 min (that confuses me...). Anyway, as I passed each mile, I could see I was somewhere in the 8 min/mile range.
Course: Downtown Jackson around the old Capitol building. Rolling with a downhill finish (after a final uphill).
Keeping cool Good Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2010-03-23 9:41 AM

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Madison, MS
Subject: St. Paddy's Day Parade Race 5k Run/Walk

2010-03-23 8:32 PM
in reply to: #2742482

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Waller County, TX
Subject: RE: St. Paddy's Day Parade Race 5k Run/Walk
Hey! Look who's running a speedy 5K?

Good job pushing hard through that 3rd mile.

FWIW, I've been passed many a time by athletes who were "running so comfortably and easy, it didn't look as if she (or he) was going very fast at all". Oh well, is right.
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