Sunday, September 23, 2012

Corvallis Fall Festival Race Results and Race Review

Another 2012 race and another PR in the books!

Hey, if you just want to see the results and could care less about my race; I completely understand. Here are the results for the 5k and 10k.

Now let's talk about me!

So I was on a nice little streak in 2012 coming into the Corvallis Fall Festival 10k. I had run four races and set three all-time PR's and one master's PR. So I was four for four. And since I had set my 10k PR last year, at the very same Fall Festival course, I saw no reason that I shouldn't go five for five in 2012. My PR coming in was 48:57. Nothing spectacular, to be sure. It was basically the same pace as my half marathon PR, so I definitely felt good about my chances coming in.

We actually had some rain the night before, but an hour or so before race time it was sunny and quite warm. A good day for a race!

I met my friend Manny B, coming up from Eugene, and we chatted, did a little warmup, chatted, hit the honey buckets, and chatted while we waited for the 10k start time of 9:15. Sort of late on a warm day like today, but there you go.

Now I know I've complained about this before, but I just don't I'm going to complain again. You've got a race with both a 10k and a 5k...why do you start the 5k first!?!? The 5k will always have the walkers and the kids and the joggers. The 10k will always have the more serious, faster on average, runners. So why start the 5k first? I just don't understand...

Anyway, they started the 5k at 9:10 and the 10k exactly five minutes later at 9:15. I don't need to tell you that we came up on the back of the 5k pack very, very quickly. It was never completely blocked like we were at the Red, White and Blue 5k, but you had to swerve back and forth around a number of walkers, both during the first two miles, then at the end as well when we merged back in together during the last mile. Big deal? No. But I still think you could solve the problem by starting the 10k first. Stepping off!

As usual, I ran the first quarter mile or so without looking at my watch. I like to try to find my pace and keep my breathing and heart rate at a decent level before I look at my pace and adjust.

And as usual, I went out too fast.

I mean, look at that first quarter-mile! I needed to average about 7:45 to set a new PR. I wanted to average about 7:30. I glanced down at my watch at about a quarter-mile and saw I was hitting about 6:15! Hey now! I looked up and saw Gerhard Behrens' back just ahead of me and then I really knew I needed to slow down. There's no way I should be running up with him at any point in the race.

I was able to reel it back in a bit and hit the first mile marker at 7:03. Quite a bit faster than my plan, but I felt OK so I just kept rolling. The second mile came in at a respectable 7:14 and I knew if I could just hang on for 6.2 miles, the PR was looking like it would go down hard.

Miles three and four are a long, straight out and back on the road that heads behind the OSU Dairy Barns and then under the Covered Bridge, until finally hitting the turn-around all the way out at 53rd. No 5k runners to worry about in this section, but it's not my favorite section, plus the sun was blazing in our faces on the way back to campus. My splits here were 7:33 and 7:28, which was just about perfect. I was feeling it a little bit, but was pretty happy that my pace was steady around 7:30.

We came back onto campus proper for mile five and my favorite section - a slight downhill and, importantly, shaded by huge trees as we made our way down to Reser Stadium. Overall, this is a very flat and fast course. That plus the late September date, which usually means clear skies, but not too hot, makes this a great course for a PR. I hit mile five at 7:36.

I was tired on mile six, and my 7:41 pace shows that, but there's a short hill in front of Dixon there and I was already dreaming of the downhill past Benton Hall and the finish line right after.

I came through the last .2 mile with a nice push at 7:14 pace to hit the line at 46:11.

The old PR was 48:57, so it was a nearly three minute slice off my old PR! Overall, I was 39th out of 216 runners in the 10k. Fourth out of 15 in my close to that white ribbon! And 35th out of 105 guys.

So one more PR in the books for 2012! Next up is the Condor Run 25k...that's a very hilly trail run...although I don't think I've ever run a 25k before, so I guess that's a sure PR!

See you there!

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