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Jingle Bell Run - Run5 Mile

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Houston, Texas
United States
55F / 13C
Total Time = 47m 59s
Overall Rank = 572/1462
Age Group = M40-49
Age Group Rank = 75/123
Pre-race routine:

Race start was 2pm, so we had a big, late breakfast. Got downtown about 1hr before, parked, and checked out the start/finish area. They had a live band and some vendors giving stuff away. Nice setup overall.
Event warmup:

We had driven the course the day before, so we just spent this time getting acclimated, stretching, and using the portapotties. I did eat 1 hammer gel about 15 min before the start, for no particular reason. About 5 min before the start, we eased our way through the walkers to find a place among the runners close to the starting line.
  • 47m 59s
  • 5 miles
  • 09m 36s  min/mile

My wife and I did this race as a check-off on the way to a half-marathon in February. My previous long run was about 4.5 miles, and longest running race was a 5k. Jen had done 2 10k races before. I intended to "race" this run, but not all out since I hadn't run the distance before. I intended to keep my HR below, but close to, 160 for the first 3 miles. I knew from a LT test that I could maintain 160 for 3 miles, so I told myself I could take the last 2 miles faster. I was hoping for a 47:30 finish. The start was very laid back, with everyone taking off at a healthy trot, despite it being kind of crowded. Funny, in high school I hated the start of any race. I would get very nervous, and my HR would skyrocket. I was usually out of breath for the first mile of any race. Now, racing is so much fun, I love the start. I still have adrenaline, but it's positive and controlled. Back to the race: we got out of the shade of downtown and onto Allen Parkway at about the 1-mile mark, where spotters were yelling out the time. I checked my watch and saw we were on a 10:10 pace. We picked up a little speed until the first underpass. There I realized my wife doesn't like running downhill. I went on down, but took it easy going back up. She caught me at the top. We would repeat this routine for the next few underpasses. Our 2nd mile went by a little faster, and I was feeling good about the pace. HR was staying just below 160. We took a very brief walk for water at the 2-mile mark, then hit the turnaround. I was feeling really good, but Jen was pushing hard. She walked the next drink station, and I took off. Since she had run a couple of 10k races before, I knew she would finish. So I went ahead and took off on the next underpass. My hamstring, which had been sore and/or tight for a week leading up to the race, started to protest, so I eased up just a little bit and tried to hold that same pace. At the 4-mile mark, I tried to increase turnover w/out striding too much. I passed several people, and a few passed me. Felt great at the finish, but didn't have the kind of kick that I have at the end of a 5k. Got some water, walked a little, then went back to see Jen cross the line soon after me.
What would you do differently?:

Nothing, really. This race was a (kind of early) mid-point motivator on our half-marathon training plan. It worked. We enjoyed running together the first 3 miles, and both felt good about our race.
Post race
Warm down:

We walked around, got water, Coke, and yogurt.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Overall run fitness. Was only at about 12 miles per week at this point.

Event comments:

Overall organization and support were great. Only complaint is that they started giving away cases of food before most people finished, leaving very little for the rest. We finished around the middle of the entire group of runners/walkers, and watched people walking away from the tables w/boxes and cases of food, leaving no single-servings for the rest of us. Other than that, great event.

Last updated: 2011-01-06 12:00 AM
00:47:59 | 05 miles | 09m 36s  min/mile
Age Group: 75/123
Overall: 123/1462
Performance: Good
Course: Streets of downtown, out Allen Parkway, then back downtown. Only hills were where Allen went under cross-streets. I think 3 each way. We had the whole road just for runners, so it was nice.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2011-01-24 3:06 PM

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Subject: Jingle Bell Run
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