Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Personal Records at the Green Door 5k

First, let's set the stage .....

For Angelia, this 5k would be the graduation run for a Couch-to-5k group out of Rockwall Running Center that she helped coach.  As such, she would be pacing one of the new runners and not racing it for herself.  I should also mention the group contained a few members of the staff from our boys' school.  Here's what Tri4SuccessMom had to say about working with the group:

    C25K started on January 3rd.  That’s right. In the winter.  Whatever Mother Nature threw at us, we were going to run in it.  After being asked to help coach this amazing group I really had to think about it. Did I have what it took to help other new runners?  I am still just a beginner myself.  I am still working on getting faster.  These are just a few of the things that I thought about before answering.  One thing I know for sure is I love the way I feel when I am running! Plus, if I could just pass on to just one person the love of running as Coach Barrett Hopper from Rockwall Running Center did for me, then I have succeeded.
Angelia and Coach Barrett Hopper
celebrating a successful race.

For Julian, we wanted to see what he could do.  Yes, he's run a 26:40 before but we all know he's actually faster than that.  We made it very clear he was to take off on his own and not to hang behind me until the finish line was in sight (much like our bricks and prior 5k).

For me, I had a series of hard cycling intervals the night before.  I really didn't know how my body would respond so there was no pressure.  Also, I had originally planned on doing a 67mi cycling event but scrapped that plan because Connor's 2nd t-ball game was at 11:30am, so I decided to join the family for the run but had no real goal in mind.  Heck, I even rode my bike to the event with my running shoes in my Rudy Project backpack.

When I arrived at the start line I chained the bike up to a tree, changed my shoes, and looked around for Angelia, Julian, and my mother-in-law.  They had pulled out of the driveway at the same time as me but were nowhere to be found.  Did I beat them on my bike?  It's possible but unlikely.  After meandering around for a bit I realized I had forgotten my race bib.  Oops!  A quick call to Angelia confirmed that they had forgotten as well.  I caught her as she was about to leave the house again!  Well, that explains why I couldn't find them.  Eventually we got our act together and it was time for The Green Door 5k to begin!

Julian and I lined up a bit closer to the front and I reminded him he was NOT to run behind me.  An older gentleman asked if he had done one of these before.  I told the man that he had and that he would do it in about 25 minutes.  His response?  "Well then I guess I'll be about 5 minutes behind you."  I laughed and said, "Yeah, me too."

When the horn sounded it was a bit of a jumbled mess as there was a narrow starting chute and a small bridge to cross, but we still took off like a rocket.  I immediately knew I had taken off too fast but figured "whatever, let's see how long we can sustain this."  You see, I didn't really care if I blew up and was toast halfway through --- there was no real goal I would be disappointed by missing.  Instead, I thought the longer I could sustain this pace the more Julian would push himself and we'd finally see what he's really made of.  It definitely tested him as he was behind me the entire first mile.

Mile 1 - 7:20 - AvgHR 173(96%max)
Yikes! Did I mention I usually average 9min/mi on a 5k?

I managed to hold on for another half mile before Julian finally got by me.  He was running as steady as ever and I was slowing drastically.  By the end of the second mile I was at more of a jog than a run.

Mile 2 - 8:56 - AvgHR 180(100%max!!!)

As one would expect after averaging their max heartrate the previous mile, I was basically done.  That's alright, I knew that was likely when I kept pushing early.  After another 4/10ths of a mile I finally stopped and walked for 30 seconds.  I have never walked during any training run or race, but I wasn't throwing in the towel.  I thought if I could just catch my breath and force my heart back into my chest I might be able to cross the finish line respectably.  Also, I knew I would be crossing paths with my wife soon and I didn't want to be walking!  That 30 seconds only dropped my HR by 11bpm but it was worth it.  I took off again at about an 8min/mi pace and even managed to "sprint" finish at a 6:10 pace.

Mile 3 - 8:47 - AvgHR 177(98%max)

Official time - 25:24, a new PR by nearly 3 minutes!

Julian managed a strong finish,
clearly sprinting in the photos,
and came in at 24:17!
He crushed his old PR too!
As usual, not touching the ground.Wincing in pain as a foot actually
comes in contact with Mother Earth.

No feet on the ground!
We grabbed some refreshments and watched others cross the line (remember, some people from his school were running).  Everyone was really coming in strong, enjoying the downhill finish.  As little as 5 minutes later, members of the C25K group were finishing their races.  One by one they came across.  Soon, Angelia came around the corner in a full sprint with the new runner she was pacing just behind (and well ahead of their target).  Now, Angelia has made some real gains in speed the last few months but hasn't raced a 5k for herself since the Superman 5k.  We'll see what she's got this weekend at the Lion's Dash 5k but for the time being, this technically ended up as a PR for her too!  Yep, you heard me, PR's for all 3 of us.

You may recall from the beginning of this recap that the only reason I did this event was because of a t-ball game.  Well, that meant there wasn't much time to hang around.  I changed my shoes, grabbed my helmet, and it was homeward bound on my bike.  Ideally after a 25 minute effort at 98% max HR you wouldn't ride up a 5% grade into a headwind but that's what happened.  The headwind all the way home meant I was at threshhold when I was just trying to take it easy.  By the time I got home it was literally jump in the shower, put on my baseball jersey, and head to the game (Angelia had picked up Connor from my Dad's house).

Check out those eyes still on the tee!Full stride into 1st base.

All in all, it was a very successful day.  We all learned a little something about our capabilities and I'm feeling confident my target event (the Fast&Furious Duathlon this Sunday) will go well .... even if I did have to pay for it the next day.

1 comment:

Michael said...

Awesome job on PRs all around! Man Julian is FAST!! Congrats to everyone - what a great race!