Thursday, January 2, 2014

2014 Resolution Run

2014 Resolution Run 5k
 Charity: Bethany Hall
Event History: 2nd year
Personnel History: None. 2014 will be my first year participating
Age Group awards were revised days after the race to standard 5yr groups, so the 2nd place medal above was upgraded to a 1st place.
 Garmin Data: HERE

Final Results:
2014-time 20:33.3, Pace 6:38/M, Place 9/186 overall, 1/15 in my age group, 9/84 among men
In my quest to get back into sub 20 shape for 5k events I have been mostly focused on treadmill training so I needed a relatively flat course in order to better reflect the type of training I've been doing. The Resolution Run 5k course is along a familiar stretch of the Roanoke River Greenway and while it is not flat like a treadmill at zero incline, it is a far cry flatter than any where I train when I'm outdoors, so I figured participation in the Resolution Run 5k an excellent opportunity to test myself.

With around 200 participants, the race was just the right size to ensure a comfortable race start. Everybody who wanted to be up near the front had plenty of room and the flow of the race was not disrupted by people getting too bunched up and unable to establish their paces. I started on the front line and was slower off the line than what I expected, but easily found myself in the top 25 by the time I got my wind (about the first 1/10th mile).

I used the remainder of the first mile to push hard and pass as many people as I could and then when I found myself in a stable position I just worked to hold my spot. The course was an out and back, so I was able to count the runners coming back towards me from the half way point to determine I was in 9th place overall. I wasn't going to burn myself out to hold 9th at this point, but with the scent of a top 10 in the air I knew I was going to have to work for every step.

I was feeling some burn at the turn around, but it was manageable and I kept my pace steady in the high 6's for the last two miles without getting passed. I never looked back, but I thought I could hear someone catching up to me as the finish line came into view about a 1/4 mile away. I figured they were gaming me and letting me hold a slower pace than they were capable of so that they could dash out at the end and take my spot.

If they had made the move to pass with 1/4 mile to go then the spot would have been theirs. I knew my tank only had enough fuel to competitively defend 9th for maybe 1/10th mile. Fortunately, nobody made a move to pass, so when I saw I was within my sprint-to a-burnout zone, I quickly erased any doubt as to who 9th place would go to as I easily threw down the last 1/10th mile in the low 6's or possibly even a high 5!

Finished AND exhausted...knowing I had a top 10, I bellowed forth with about 5 or 6 war cries over the next 2-3 minutes as I fought to regain my breath. It was a good adrenaline rush, a great start to the year, and a great way to spend the morning!
Faith and I chillin', waiting on the awards ceremony.


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