Today's lesson: I eat 150 BPM podcasts like desert after a full Thanksgiving meal - with steady gusto and determination.
Race Report: Gazelle Boy, my niece, Nini, and I all ran this morning in the 8th annual Hingham Thanksgiving 5K through Wompatuck State Forest.
This was an early race - 7:30 am - and crowded. There were about 600 runners. This was a fundraiser for the Hingham xcountry and track booster club - so even though they are a rival team, I feel good about supporting a sport that isn't just basketball or football. (Where most athletic money goes.) I checked the weather on line before leaving - 40* and overcast with showers predicted.
I hoped the weather gods would smile on us and hold off on the rain (they did) and Gazelle Boy and I headed out to meet up with Nini. Sorta SIL came to watch us finish and was our "support crew" - holding things like my glasses, keys, wallet, etc.
When they said "7:30 start," they meant it. I had barely pinned on my number and set up my podcast to play on the Nike+ when the gun sounded at exactly 7:30 and the 600 or so runners were off.
This is a pretty flat course - some rises and dips - but nothing major. Today I selected the 150 BPM DJ Steveboy mix. I figured I had a comfortable 4 miler at 142 BPM, why not kick it up a notch for a shorter distance?
Yeah, yeah, yeah, best laid plans and all that...
The run started at the high school and entered the state forest. We ran along the auto road through the woods - which was a really relaxing and pleasant run.
The first mile was good. Someone was there to call times and I was surprised to hear 11:44. I'm usually around the 12:00 to 12:30 point in a race. Overall my pace tends to hover around the 12:30 - 13:00 minute mark. But I also knew I wouldn't be slowing down because the beat was really driving me.
Around me were accomplished triathletes and runners who were coaching their kids. We passed back and forth throughout the race. Whenever the younger kids (probably in the 7-9 year old range) would start to get discouraged, I'd say something like, "C'mon, you know you're gonna beat the socks off me," or "You gonna let an old lady beat you?" They'd scamper off and I'd pass them later when they were walking and then they'd scamper past me after they recovered.
Just as the voice in my ear said 2.5 kilometers to go, I got a stitch in my side.
So I slowed to a walk and kept driving my elbows and heels until it finally subsided. I came up on the water station just before the 2 mile point and gratefully drank a cup as I was getting that cotton mouth feel on the edges of my lips and started running again.
The person was still there calling splits - this time for the 2 mile and he yelled out "24:16"
"Hmm... not bad," I thought. I realized, in spite of the walking, I was still making good time. About a half mile down the road, after we came out of the woods to see the high school, I could feel the stitch returning.
I took it down a little bit and started counting the phone poles - just make it to the next pole - and then counting off a 4 beat as I ran. The race finished by running through the parking lot and onto the track to run the last 300 meters.
One of the kids I had been encouraging along the way was starting to slow. I caught up and said, "C'mon buddy, you made it this far now finish strong." He put the pedal to the metal and cruised across the line while I was coming up on the home stretch.
As I came up on the finish, I couldn't fully read the display as I run without my glasses on. It looked like 39:12 as I approached. Not my best, not my worst as I headed into the chute.
When I got home, I sat down to see if the times were up yet - they were (that was fast especially since there were no chips in this race). Turns out my final time ws 36:19!!! That's an 11:41 pace and moving towards my goal of a 10 minute mile.
This is a PR for me totally shattering my last PR of 38:36 back on Labor Day.
Gazelle Boy did his usual finish at the front of the pack thing and Nini ran sub 10 miles. All in all a good outing for all of us.
Now it's time to go assist Mr. Pi in cooking today's meal.
Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.