Friday, November 23, 2012

San Francisco 5K Turkey Trot

My little running spree concluded with a 5K turkey trot yesterday. My goal was to break 18 minutes, and practice some more pain management skills. Amy joined me and she brought her friends Jesse and Chenny along for the ride. They were there just to have fun, and I felt a bit sheepish because I wanted to do a proper warm-up, my dynamic stretches, and stride-outs in preparation for the "race". But the 24 year-olds understood this 41 year-old's need to break 18 minutes.

Half a mile into the race, I found myself leading the damn thing. Uh oh. But things felt good, I knew I was taking it out a bit harder but knew that I would settle into a pace. At about the 1-mile mark, this kid goes by me for the lead but after the initial pass, I noticed our gap remained the same. So began my plan just to stalk him. I started to hear footsteps from behind so I threw in a couple of surges, but the footsteps would eventually make their way back to my ears. At the two-mile mark, two guys pass me, and I assessed the situation. I was running at about 95% so I knew I couldn't push much more. They started to pull away and my initial reaction was to speed up. But then I could hear my high school cross country coach say, don't spike your heart rate chasing guys down, just steadily increase the effort. And that I did, and I reeled the fellas back, and together we pulled in and passed the first place whipper snapper

With less than a mile to go, it was the three of us running neck and neck. I asked myself who wanted it more? I demonstrated that I wanted it by pulling the two guys back. But I was now at about 99%, and I didn't have any more, just holding this pace to the finish would be hard. One guy made a case for wanting it more by putting in a surge and the other guy responded. I fell back, but they were still about 10 feet up. I decided to regroup, try to maintain the gap, and see if I could put in a kick with a quarter or so mile to go. To my surprise, the 3-mile mark appeared, and they too saw it, and began their kick. I responded but I didn't have it, and they got me by 6 seconds. So much for regrouping and planning a kick, the run was marked short at 2.84 miles. Damn it! Yeah, I can extrapolate and say 16 minutes for 2.84 miles would have me breaking 18 minutes, but it's just that, extrapolation. It's not legit. Foils, I guess the Universe just didn't want me breaking 18 minutes legitimately

Since yesterday was Thanksgiving, I should mention that I'm very thankful for my health, and to be able to train and race, and push my body physically. I'm also thankful for my family and friends, who make life worth living and fun.


Steve said...

My best 5K I ever ran was course shortened. Happened on Thanksgiving too. It was nowhere near 18:00.

Don't worry not everyone can run a 15:00 5K... errr. I mean 22:00 :)

Matt said...

Way to push your self and "race!

Teresa said...

Happy thanksgiving!!! I love how you described this as testing your pain management! I give you the sub 18. You earned it!