Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Lesson Learned

I went down to Hartford to support some teammates that were running the half and full marathon on Saturday and left there with a little more than I had planned on. Since I had not registered in time I planned on meeting up with Jim and Rich C and running the first few miles of the half with them. I figured I would wish them luck, get a good 3-5 mile run in, then peel off and head home to Brookfield for the weekend.

I met up with Jim, but never found Rich. With that, Jim and I started the race and were able to run steady 7:00 minute pace for a while. After about 3 or 4 miles, I realized I had no idea where I was and I had better just stay on course until I know where I am, at which time I will look for my car.

My original plan of 3-5 miles had some obvious flaws that became obvious when I found myself at the 10K mark having to use the bathroom. I hadn't really hydrated properly that morning, nor did I eat well. The race was pretty much completed on a sausage egg and cheese, a large french vanilla coffee, and a mini gatorade. Regardless, I kept running.

Jim and I went through the 10K in just over 43 minutes (a PR for me) and that is when I told Jim I was gonna stop at the bathroom and I would catch up with him, boy was I wrong! With Jim holding his 7 min pace, I had to run faster to catch up. When I tried this my body simply didn't respond. In all honesty it wasn't a smart move on my part as I hadn't run more than 3 miles in total since my half iron almost a month ago. I was able to keep Jim in my sights about 200 yards ahead of me until mile 9 when I really started to have trouble.

Up until mile 9 I had averaged somewhere around 7:15 per mile. Mile 10 dropped to 8:08, then to 8:53 at mile 11 (when Rich C passed me in persuit of Jim), then good ole Mike Roberts entered the picture. Mike was running the half for a good run workout in prep for Ironman Florida in 3 weeks, and had already run 5 miles before the half even started! Mike has had an awesome season incluing a 10:06 Ironman in Lake Placid, and a 4:22 half in Rhode Island (which he won overall). With about 2 miles to go Mike wouldn't let me continue my bonking experience and proceeded to push me (literally at times) back down to 7:30 pace. He offered some very helpful run tips and put me back on track to a sub 1:40 half. The two of us cut out just before the finish line in order to start our warm down without getting caught up in the finishers shoot.

It was a great day for our club as numerous Cyclonauts ran to PRs as well as Boston Qualifying times. I learned a valuable lesson in adequate race preparation, as I am still in quite a bit of pain 3 days following the race. More importantly I realized that I have quite a bit of work to do on my run if I am going to get the results that I desire in upcoming races. Welcome to the off season, which for me will mean weight training, and lots of running. I am not sure what my next big race will be, but whatever it is I had better start training for it.

till next time, cheers

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