Saturday, June 02, 2007

Harpoon 5 Miler

This is one of these races that sells out in nothing flat. Over 1400 runners took to the streets of South Boston to run 5 miles and (if they want) drink beer.

The Harpoon brewery is just down from the Boston Fish Pier, so when I pulled up this morning I was happy to smell the ocean. I know a lot of people don't like the smell of the ocean at low tide, but I always have. Since the race was out of the brewery, it was a 21+ race and I needed to show ID - an interesting dilemma as I had to figure out a way to carry my ID, keys and inhaler. I dug out my old mp3 player pouch which filled the bill. On my other arm was my Nike+ with the sensor on one shoe and the timing chip on the other. Not ideal, but at least I was balanced.

I found my sister in the corral as we waited to start and we lasted maybe a block before I told her to go on and run ahead. Since I hadn't worn my watch, I decided I would run the first mile, walk for up to 6 minutes and then run to the next mile marker where I would then repeat the walk/run cycled. Unfortunately I went out way too fast at the start, finishing the first mile in 11:06. I knew I wouldn't be able to maintain that and, given the humidity, I was grateful for the walk. The first mile was through an industrial area - which was eerily empty on a Saturday morning.

After the first water stop, you start to run along the beach before being diverted over the pedestrian causeway towards Castle Island. What a beautiful part of the run - to be running over the ocean with a welcome breeze and beautiful views. This was my favorite part of the run and was probably half the race distance. I was doing pretty well - keeping around 12:15 or so pace until I hit mile 4.

Mile 4 was back through the industrial areas we had run toward the beach and I was starting to feel the heat. Once we were away from the ocean, there was no more breeze. I could see the bulk of the pack ahead of me and was feeling good. I knew I'd PR when, about a half mile from the finish I stepped in a pot hole and rolled my right ankle.

Yeah, I dropped a few f-bombs and hopped a little. My ankle was sore, but it felt strong and I figured I'd just walk in - kissing the PR goodbye. Just as the Nike+ voice said, "400 meters to go," I noticed my niece was waiting for me. She didn't run the race, she was there as support crew and walked me in. I did jog the last 100 yards or so for a finish of 67:01. Turns out that I PR'd anyway since I did 67:29 at the Doyle's 5 miler 6 weeks ago.

When I got home, I barely had time to shower before running out the door to a meeting and some errands. By the time I got home, I was starting to feel it in my ankle - which was now starting to swell a little, so I grabbed the icepack from the freezer, took some ibuprofen and watched the Sox game. I'll treat it a little gingerly over the next couple of days, but the swelling is pretty much gone and there is only a slight bruise. I decided to give myself Sunday & Monday off and I'll go for a short run on Tuesday to see how it does.

I definately want to do this run again. Maybe I'll do the Sugar Bowl in July out of the L Street Running Club which covers a chunk of that route as well. I do know this much, there is a note in my Palm to keep my eye open at the Harpoon site for when registration opens next year so I don't miss out again.


Nini said...

Do the Sugar Bowl! It's SUCH a great course... I'm going to try to work the reg table so I can make it back to work for something, but we'll see!s

Paula said...

Hey...I'm going to do the 7.5 mile run...also...please remind me about the harpoon race for next year to ign up again....thanks

Ash&aHalf said...


I'm a RunnersWorlder (AshNaHalf) and I saw your blog... one of my own, a Sox fan!

The first 5k I ran in was completely on the beach and after 1 mile I got sick from the mixture of the heat and smell of ocean. :[ not good.

What shoes do you wear? Nikes I assume? I'm an Asicser, but I'm contemplating switching to Nike and getting all the neato timing/distance gadgets they have now.

:) Have a good day!