Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Larry Robinson 10 Miler

The Skinny
time - 55:44 (my watch)
pace - 5:34
place - 1
mile 1 - 5:21
mile 2 - 5:45
mile 3 - 5:37
mile 4 - 5:34
mile 5 - 5:17
mile 6 - 5:45
mile 7 - 5:42
mile 8 - 5:39
mile 9 - 5:21
mile 10 - 5:44

The Full Race Report
When scouting out the race on the internet earlier in the week, I learned that this course consisted of a double loop. You ran out a mile, did a 4 mile loop 2 times, then ran back to the start for the last mile. The course is not easy nor fast. It's moderately challenging; the uphill miles are primarily 2, 3, 6, 7. The last half mile has a few rolling hills that can zap any remaining strength you have in your legs. That being said, the rest of the race is either flat or downhill. Again, I'd call it "moderately challenging," but much more difficult than the Blessing of the Fleet 10 mile course down in RI.

While listening to REM's Accelerate and stretching, I saw former college x-c teammate and current friend Jimmy Robinson. He was doing the race as a training run and held an even 6:40 pace the whole way. If he was racing, he would've been way under 60 mins.

The race started on time (how refreshing) and three men shot out of the cannon that was the starting line. I found myself in 4th place. After we vacated the campus of Andover HS, we hit some rolling hills and the lead trio dissembled. A minute later I passed a guy and found myself in third. As we approached the 1 mile mark, I could see the clock. The runner in second place could too. It was if as soon as the numbers became legible to him, he panicked and slowed. Turning omniscient, I saw him think: "Oh man, this is way too fast for me." He slowed substantially and I passed him. On the second loop of the course I saw him walking back toward a water stop. I hope he isn't injured.

On the ascent to mile 2, I found myself closing the gap to the leader w/out really trying. Halfway up the incline, I sidled up next to him. He stayed w/ me for a bit but then I separated. I ran the rest of the race alone save for the times when I came upon the 5k participants and people doing the 1st loop of the 10 miler when I was on the second. Seeing these runners made things fun and broke up the monotony of the race.

The fist two miles of the loop are up and the second two are down. They had a clock at mile 5 and my time was 27:24. I thought two things: 1) that's faster than my time for the last 5 miler I did, and 2) I probably won't negative split this thing. I knew the hills the second time around would be tougher, and they were. I also had this feeling that nobody was near me. I didn't feel an urgency to push the pace. Yes, I wanted a good time, but by the time I hit mile 7 I just wanted the race to be over. I wanted to look back but didn't allow myself that luxury b/c I wanted to try and keep pressing.

I was resurgent on the downhill 9th mile and hit 5:21. The race crew had a clock at this marker too (usually only really big races have clocks at mile markers; I was impressed that this race had them) and I was surprised to read 50:00. That's better than I thought it would be. I shifted into another gear and tried pushing. Maybe too aggressively. When I hit the rolling hills leading back to the finish line, I felt my body settle into a pace instead of push it. A cop at an intersection cheered me on and told me nobody was even close. That kind of killed me and was the excuse I needed to cruise it in. I tried not to, but ultimately I think I did.

The directors ran this event efficiently. Kudos to them. When I returned from the race, the 5k awards were nearly complete. When I returned from my cooldown, the 10 mile awards were nearly complete. Generous awards too. I won a coffee cake, a pair of New Balance sneakers, and a gift certificate to Whirlaway Sports for my 55 minutes of work. I was happy.

My 10 mile pr is 55:17 that I ran during the NB halfer a few years ago. So, it wasn't a pr type of day, but still a good effort. I ran 56:52 on a much flatter course in July; I'm glad to be improving w/in this cycle of training. I still think I can run low 55 or even 54 for 10 if I get the right day.

1 comment:

J.Fyffe said...

Looks like you had a good day. Keep it up man! I look forward to some grand prix races with you next year. Maybe some snowshoe this winter?

Post a Comment