Saturday, September 24, 2005


I’m still not sure what to think of this race. Overall, I ran a smart race and was in control the whole time, but in the end, the time was slow (39:30). This race is in downtown Minneapolis, right along the Mississippi River and is a double out-and-back course. I thought I wouldn’t like that layout, but I actually did. It was a little hillier than I had imagined, being along the river.

After last evening’s hard 2 mile effort I wasn’t really sure how my legs would respond, so when Jim asked me what I was going out in, I said 6:15-6:20. True to my word I passed the mile in 6:15 with Heather, the lead woman. We were about 3 seconds behind Jim. Since Heather and Jim are usually good for around 39-minutes, I felt comfortable with my positioning. A half mile later I made the first turn-around in 7th place. First and second were out of sight, but 3rd-6th were just in front of me. Over the next quarter of the race, I continued to run a comfortable, even pace, going through miles 2 and 3 in 6:21 and 6:20 and reaching 5k in 19:38. During this stretch I also moved into 3rd place with Jim close behind in 4th. For some reason, Heather dropped off the pace.

At the halfway point I’d guess the leader was around 17:30, while second was around 19-flat. I was still feeling really controlled and thought negative splits would be likely. I even had illusion (delusions) of catching the guy in 2nd. I continued running even-paced miles; 4 in 6:19 and 5 in 6:20 before “tailing off” to 6:23 for the last mile. 1:32 (which seems inaccurate by a good 10 seconds) for the last two-tenths brought me home in 39:30 – 19:52 for the second half. Jim rolled in 20 seconds later. Heather faded to 41:26. Around 4.5 miles, I saw her neck and neck with another gal. She ended up finished 51 seconds behind her. Ouch.

Like I said, I don’t know what to think. I felt relaxed and controlled, but that should be expected when I’m running 20 seconds/mile slower than what I ran in April. Maybe if this had been a big race with more people to run with, I could have pushed more. If I plan on running 2-3 more 5k this year, I definitely have to get my head around pushing the pain threshold more.

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