Congratulations to all the runners that ran at Boston today and all the runners who ran in Portland too.
Okay, there are a bunch of conflicting thoughts running around through my noggin now about today’s – Patriot’s Day 5.0 Miler race.
Great Race – Loved the race organization, lots support from the city of Portland, fantastic volunteers and the course, which was fast but fair. These things along with gorgeous weather (just a little breezy), made it so it was going to be a good day for a race.
I enjoyed was the company of my brother-in-law Phil, who came along for the ride and even took a few photos during the race.
While I am happy that I finished, I still have this huge sense of disappointment about how I did.
It seems over this winter and spring, I have lost a LOT of speed!
I know that I pushed myself hard during the race, but I just kept slowing down each mile, until the last one. Which was not part of the game plan.
The other day I wrote down my goals for the race:
- primary goal – finish comfortably – no pain in the knee.
- I accomplished that goal, the knee felt fine
- it sure would be nice goal – keep up a 7:30 pace
- Just barely accomplished this one, but I managed to make it. There might be a bit of self-fulfilling prophecy here and I know that I need to change this up and expect more from myself.
- stretch goal – go sub 7:15 pace
- Nope, I only had 1 mile out of the 5 that were sub 7:15
So while I accomplished two out of three of my pre-race goals, I am still am not happy with my effort or time.
Back to the start
I was in the 4th row back of the start and had placed myself in the right start position, for the first half mile I had to keep reigning myself in and try not to run too fast. I still ran a 6:40 first mile, which is about where I really want to be. Even so there were a lot of runners passing me and then while running down Forrest Ave, I was feeling pretty good, even though I could feel myself slowing down.
However, once we turned towards Back Cove, it seemed like I was being passed by so many people, a couple of people passed me that I know from other races, who usually, I keep up with or finish slightly ahead or slightly behind, in most races I have run with them.
Today, I didn’t have anything and just let them go, which is not like me – no mental toughness or ability to keep up a faster pace.
It was such a weird and frustrating feeling watching all the other runners go by me and not being able to respond to the challenge.
Actually – it sucked!
I continued to slow down on Back Cove and each mile, more and more runners continued to pass me.
Going across Tuckey’s bridge wasn’t fun for me with the slight hill and breeze in my face and even though I knew that Washington St was part of the last mile (the 4 mile marker was a huge hint), there still wasn’t anything there and I just kept plugging along.
When I got back on Cumberland Ave, I finally found my next gear an started to pick up my pace again, it was almost like a dam broke and I was able to get my breath and my legs didn’t feel like lead weights, like they had going around Back Cove.
When I passed one of the runners who had passed me on Washington, he said “Come-on you got more left and you can beat me to the finish” At that point there were some other runners around us and I finally got my ass in gear. I took up his challenge/motivation and started to push myself and finished ahead of the small group that I had been a part of. I thanked him for pushing me at the end.
The last quarter-mile was the only part of the race, that I was totally happy with, but there is no reason that I wasn’t able to do this for the miles between 1.0 and 4.75.
I really do not know what is going on, whether it is something going on with my mental toughness, worrying too much about if I push too hard that I will re-injure myself or have I focused too much on quantity and not enough on faster paced training. It is probably some combination of the three, along with needing to get my eating back under control and lose the 10 pounds that I have gained since last May.
How did the Pearl Izumi N2 8.5 do?
I didn’t think about them at all, which is a good thing and what I want from my shoes. They were smooth feeling, but at the same time something was missing, not sure what? I can run far comfortably in my Pearl Izumi’s, but I really haven’t run that fast in them, despite of all the miles I have run in my 2 pair of N2 Road’s. It is making me re-think my race-day shoes and I can’t wait no until I get my Green Silence in, to see how they do or figure out if I need to look at other flats again.
The reality is that
This was a post-55 Personal Record and while I am not happy or satisfied with it, it is still a PR.
Time to look back at my logs, to figure out what I have done versus what I thought I had been doing and see if there are any patterns emerging (besides my getting to be an old fart, which is not the reason for this kind of dramatic drop in performance, in such a short time).
I am not going to make any excuses about my performance today, it what it is, but I do know that I am not satisfied with the outcome and will be looking at what I need to do to improve for my next race and I definitely know it is a LOT more than just what shoes I am wearing.
It is all about me not running well.
I thought that it would be appropriate to show my ugly race photo that David Colby-Young was nice enough to take.
I hope you had a good chuckle on this one :-), it pretty much summed up my day.