Sunday, February 18, 2007

2007 Racing Season Begins - Old Fashion 10 Miler

I can say that for once in a long time I was pleasantly surprised with my race results. I went into the race with zero expectations, other than trying to get a good, long workout. It was nice to go to a race where all I had to do was run. No biking, so swimming, no equipment that could fail, no chance of drowning or crashing. Just a matter of lacing up the shoes (or tighting the zip laces) and off you go.

This is a pretty nice race course, one that we could count as "fair", meaning not overly simple. There are a good number of rolling hills along with two good size hills. But, there is a long straight finish that one (not me) could use to really sprint down. I have done this course a number of times now, as it is one of the BAA runs that most of the club turns out.

I always end up going out too fast, especially here since it is a downhill-ish start. I went through the first mile at 6:08, which was fast, but what I expected. I figured I would just roll out the miles until I fried. To make matters more complicated, I had forgotten my heart rate strap due to a last second bag switch before leaving home. But, I did have the GPS on, which helped to check my pace.

One of the things about a race like this, it is not about getting faster but not slowing down. Oddly enough, I got faster. I went through the first five miles at around 30:40. This put me at a 6:08 pace, which was consistent (which made me very happy). My legs continued to feel strong throughout the race, and I kept passing people that had passed me initially. I was able to keep this up throughout the race, finishing strong in 1:00:28 (6:03/mile pace). This means that I did the second half in 29:50. This was pretty startling, but I'll attribute it to some pretty fast downhill miles.

I don't know what this says for Boston. Probably not much. Too much time has to past between now and then. Two weeks from now is another race, Stu's 30k, and that will add another piece to the puzzle. But, even if all the pieces come together, it doesn't mean that the picture is what you want it to be.

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