Monday, June 9, 2008

Art City Days 5k report

So after having failed to break 5 hours at Ogden, I thought if I could break 30 minutes at the Art City 5k, I'd be a happy camper. My previous 5k PR was 31:52, set at the "Run For Red" in 2006. I had run only one 5k since -- this race that same year. Didn't train for it at all and ran it in 33:15 that year. I had, however, run a half marathon and two full marathons.

Honestly, I was going to be happy just to PR. I knew I was going to PR. However, I really really wanted to break 30 minutes. I was pretty sure I could do this. That is, until I woke up and saw that it was pouring rain and only about 40 degrees. Yikes. Less than ideal racing conditions (not to mention door-prize drawing conditions, which is the only real reason to run the Art City 5k - [not really, it's a great course and much more]).

My wife and daughter Haley, age 7, were also going to give this one a go. They agreed to let me get my PR, then I'd come back and run the rest of the way in with them. I dropped them off at the back of the pack and headed up towards the middle/front of the pack, since I knew there wasn't going to be any chip timing here. I figured I'd need every bit of help I could under the circumstances to hit that sub-30 goal.

The gun went off and I headed out, passing more than being passed in the first bit. I was pretty sure I'd headed out too fast, and my legs were a bit tight, but I figured if I did indeed go out too fast, I'd just try to hold onto that pace. After all, I ran a marathon 4 weeks ago... 3 miles shouldn't be that darn tough.

I hit the first mile split at 9:40. The person calling out the times was about 20 seconds or so behind that, but I figured I'd go by my watch, which I started when they shot off the gun. Once that first hill was out of the way, I knew it was pretty much all downhill from there. I hit the mile 2 split at 18:57 (9:16). Here the guy calling out times was saying about 15 or seconds ahead, so I figured not every volunteer started with the gun. Doing some quick math, I knew I'd have to run the last 1.1 in 11 or less, and I knew that was going to be possible but hard, as I was feeling it already at that point. The downhill after the water stop came at just the right time to give me a boost in speed with a bit of reprieve in my perceived effort. After that it was a sail to the school. I glanced at my watch when I entered the parking lot, and saw that it was at 26: something. I knew at that point I had it made in the shade.... er, that is, rainy cloudy cruddy weather. As I was heading around the last curve of the track, I glanced up at 28 minutes on the clock. I had kicked in to a pretty good sprint at that point, when I heard a faster sprint coming up beside me. It wasn't anyone I knew, but I turned on the afterburners anyway and picked off about 5 people in the last 100 yards. The last 1.1 took me 9:45.

Finish time: 28:43 according to my watch. I can't wait for the official results.

I trudged through the very crowded and slow-moving chute, came out the other side and decided I'd wait before getting a water bottle or food, and headed back out to find the family. I saw them just around the corner from the final turn, about a half mile out. I took over the running-with-the-daughter duties and my wife took off. She finished in about 39:40, and my daughter about 40:45 or so. Don't know the official times there. It was my daughter's first race. She was so excited to have a bib number and everything! She claimed to have an ear ache from the cold and wet, so next race we'll have to find her one with a little nicer weather. Like something in June in Utah instead of April in Seattle... oh, wait....


MissAllycat said...

NICE PR!! You showed that 5k who is boss. :)

And YAY for your daughter's first race! I love seeing young runners. Start 'em young!

Julia said...

YAY ZACH! I love PRs. Congratulations. It's the BEST feeling in the world to look at that watch and just KNOW. I am jealous of that weather. It's 105 + humidity in the south and we are dying!

cropstar said...

What a fun race! That is so cool that your wife and daughter did it as well.

And CONGRATS on the PR! That is awesome!! I have a goal to break 30mins in a 5k this year as well. You've given me some inspiration to get out there and do some speed/endurance work! YAY!

Reid said...

I love the Art City Days run. I ran it with my wife this year. She had a goal to beat 30 minutes as well. Turns out we must have been right behind you at about 28:55. Congrats on your PR. Gotta love it!

Did you win a prize??