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West End 3K - RunOther

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Boulder, Colorado
United States
80F / 27C
Total Time = 10m 59s
Overall Rank = 11/28
Age Group = M40+
Age Group Rank = 11/28
Pre-race routine:

I did this race on a whim. I wanted to take part in a local race during my training camp, I mean, serious work trip in Boulder, but only decided to do this one like yesterday. It's a really fun evening event that has as much in common with bike crit racing as regular road races. The course is 2 laps of a simple 1.5k loop that runs up and down Pearl Street in Boulder, mostly passing cafes and restaurants that open to the street, providing excellent spectator spots. The event is run as a series of 4 separate 3k races (casual-ish, 40+, elite women, elite men), plus mascots and kids divisions.

After a couple of weeks of living at 5800', I'm starting to feel more acclimated, but it's still noticeably harder than at home. I was interested in seeing how fast I could run off my HIM training, which has had me running every day for the past 3 months, but never hard. I have been pleasantly surprised at the speed that I've found in my triathlon runs, but a 3k race is another animal altogether. I don't think I have done a race this short since 1989. As 'preparation' for the race I did two solid double-day workouts the past 2 days, plus an OWS workout this morning. I wore my race shoes to my class, and then rushed down to the race afterwards. Which is all a long-winded way of saying that I really had no idea what to expect.
  • 10m 59s
  • 1.86 miles
  • 05m 54s  min/mile

The pace felt fairly intense right from the start, and a sizeable group pulled ahead of me. This was the 40+ race, so no excuses about age. The caliber of runners in this town is a little bit different than what I'm used to. I passed a couple of people going up the short hill that led to the first turn-around at 750m. I thought I might perhaps catch some more if I played my cards right. But I was already breathing as hard as I would in a flat-out hill repeat, and I was only a quarter done. I passed one more guy to make it up to 9th position as we approached the end of the first lap, but the folks ahead were pulling away. I dug deeper on the second time up the hill to the last turn around, and managed to hold my position, but as we entered the last half mile two guys came steaming past me, and I was in no position to respond. I had forgotten how distance takes on a different complexion in shorter races, so I was counting down the blocks that we passed on the way towards the finish banner, and checking that I was safe from being passed by the next chaser. I thought that I was picking up the pace a little towards the end, but the movie clip that Andrea took of me finishing shows me lumbering towards the line. Very soon it was all over, and I was gasping at the side of the street, feeling like the track races of long ago. I was pleased to finish a hair under 11 minutes. The average pace isn't so special; I'm not sure what it would convert to at sea level.
Post race
Warm down:

I was in a bit of a daze for a while. Although I haven't done any running speedwork, I figured that my bike intervals might have prepared the lungs better for the punishment, but it sure didn't feel like it. I guess I should have gone for an easy run to loosen up the legs, but instead Andrea and I went straight to a trendy organic restaurant that was just a few yards from the finish line, and both the food and the beer were very nice thank you.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I might have been faster if I had: (i) not had this as my 2nd workout of the day; (ii) run any miles faster than 7 min/mile in the last 9 months. But it wasn't such a bad test-out, and it shows that there's some life in the old legs yet, and with some combination of a taper, some speedwork, or lower altitude it might be possible to pull together a respectable 5k later in the year.

Event comments:

A great race format. A couple of hours of downtown dinnertime entertainment. I wish more towns could pull of something like this.

Last updated: 2011-07-22 12:00 AM
00:10:59 | 01.86 miles | 05m 54s  min/mile
Age Group: 11/28
Overall: 11/28
Performance: Good
Course: 1500m out-and-back loop on downtown street, with one small climb per lap.
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2011-07-22 12:24 AM

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University Park, MD
Subject: West End 3K
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