Sunday, February 16, 2014

Mercedes weekend RRs

I responded to the detox with 2 wins to open the year but had been fighting hip pain since early December.  Finally, the pain became too severe to run by the end of week #3.  Add to that was the fact that my body chemistry seems to be constantly in a state of flux.  In a shocking development, Thym-Adren (an adrenal suppressant) caused me to feel severe fatigue, aches and depression.  That has happened to me before but it was due to an inability to process it. Now that my liver has been cleansed, my system should only reject pills if they move my chemistry in the wrong direction.  Prior to the detox, attempts to take the Endodren (adrenal stimulator) caused me to feel just as bad if not worse.  Now, it makes me feel better.  Go figure.  I won't know for sure until I get the medical report.

I attempted to run just a week prior to race day and it took me nearly 8 minutes to run a mile all out.  Progress came steadily thereafter and 2 days prior to the race, I clocked a 2 mile in 14-flat.  Could I have finished the half marathon?  Probably, but it would not be pretty.  In the end, I chose to register for the 5K, which took place on Saturday while the half, full and relay took place on Sunday.  My friend Jennifer, who had planned to run the relay, suffered a foot injury and asked me to run in her place.  I said "Sure."  This was the perfect solution.  I knew I was not up for racing 13 miles and I also know that if you put me out there in a race setting, I would try to run faster than my current capability and suffer a massive meltdown in the 2nd half.  My leg of the relay would be roughly from Mile 6.1-9.0 then instead of taking the bus to the finish, I would run the remainder of the course as a training run and drop out just before the finish line.  I see nothing unethical about that.  I paid for the half marathon and had the right to be on the course but since I did not run the entire way, I did not cross the finish line and did not accept a finisher's medal.

Super Hero 5K RR:
  My reasonable expectation was a sub-7 pace (21:42) but felt that if I could make some gains overnight, I may be able to go sub-21 (roughly 6:45 pace).  I vowed to run smartly and not start "racing" until at least Mile 2.  Not surprisingly, I did not take my own advice.  Due to a funky GPS signal, I had no idea how fast I was going until about a half mile into the race.  The course looped through downtown and included a nice section through Railroad Park.  Overall, it was one of the flattest 5Ks that I have run.  If I am in PR shape, this is one to consider.  It does have a gentle incline going up 20th St. near the finish but it will not slow your pace significantly.  My GPS read 3:12 at 0.5 miles, a 20:00 pace but since it was slightly downhill, it was not terribly fast. We made the turn into Railroad Park and I came through the Mile marker in a solid 6:36.  The pace was slipping a bit but I came through the halfway point around 10:24 and still had a decent chance to break 21.  Mile 2 passed in 13:23 and I was holding my position well despite the pace slowing to 6:47.  I would need to run 6:52 in Mile 3 then finish strong.  Unfortunately, I was faltering going up the incline on 20th.  I was passed by my friend Natalie with about a quarter mile to go and it appeared that I would fall short of 21:00.  I did not surrender my pride and went after Natalie down the stretch.  I pulled even with 50 yards to go but she found another gear that I could not match.  Final time was 21:09.  It was good for 23rd overall and 3rd in my age group. Splits were 6:36-6:47-7:00-46.

Mercedes Relay:
I took the bus from the starting line to the relay exchange location and waited for Alex to arrive.  I took off a solid pace.  Despite going uphill, I was doing a good deal faster than my planned 7:30 pace and it felt good to pass some folks running the half.  I ran the first 2 miles in 7:15 and 7:16 then hit some downhill and saw my pace quicken to the 7:00 range in Miles 3-4.  From this point, with the pace beginning to get to me, I felt no point in racing this all out so I dialed it back a bit.  Still, I kept it respectable all the way and my pace never slipped below the 7:20 range.  I dropped out after 6.5 miles in an overall time of 46:54 (7:13 pace).  Figure that it was a quarter marathon at 3:10 BQ pace.  Not bad.   Congrats to Nick on another PR of 1:45:42.

Next up:
I expect to be hurting tomorrow after back to back quality sessions.  I ran 17 miles this past week and aim to hit 30ish next week before maintaining 40ish until further notice.  Next race will be the Rumpshaker 5K in 4 weeks.  I hope to be near 20:00 shape for 5K by then.

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