Race Report - Run/Walk to Irish Fest
by on Monday, August 19, 2013  (3 comments)

Race day - looking for a personal record (PR) - likely ready for that PR. Running the Run/Walk to Irish Fest 5K. Had trouble getting to the starting area but I had built in a good deal of extra time - always do. Then I had parking issues - the QPS parking lot machine wouldn't accept any cards, only cash and did not give any change. So, I left and found a free street parking location - two hour parking - plenty of time to leave before two hours.

I checked in for the race and pinned the race bib (with timing chip) on to my Hillrunner shirt. I got myself in a relaxed mood, hit the port-a-potty and then started on a two-mile warm-up run. It was very warm out there and 100% sunny. I kept it easy at about an 8:30 per mile pace. At the end of the warm-up I was drenched with sweat - it was dripping from me! I was thinking that this may be a tough race to PR after all. I did some light stretching staying loose and relaxed (in the shade.)

Started to line-up for the start - there was some sort of system to get people to line-up appropriately but it was not announced or made obvious. I saw Andy Ruffalo and made sure to wish him luck and to race well - kinda silly since he is a great runner and racer but I did so anyway. I also noticed a race bandit right next to me a lady with black and grey hair in a pony tail and a purple shirt. That peeved me a bit as nearly everyone else paid for the race and she was going to benefit off us.

Then we all heard a whispery "ready, set, go" most of us could not tell that was the start of the race but by two seconds - we all knew to get going. I started out strong keeping an eye on the Garmin - I did not want to get out too fast. I held a good pace through the first half mile while working my way around some folks going a hair slower than I was. Hit mile one in 6:08 and was feeling good, on pace for a strong PR. During that first mile as we ran along the lakefront right next to the Art Museum a lady was kinda trapped against the rail at the lake and she kept "oh my God, this is so cool" over and over again as a fast, thick crowed of runners was blasting past her. The next half mile I worked my way through a couple of runners and was still on pace although a bit slowed running that half mile in 3:09. I picked up the pace a hair to get back on track for that PR.

Then it ended. Less than a quarter mile later a muscle in my lower back just seized up quite painfully. I immediately pulled off to the left out of traffic before slowing down and made my way to a picnic table. I shut off my Garmin and I sat there for a minute or two trying to stretch and massage that area. I was not going to end up a DNF (did not finish) so I started walking and then jogging the course. I was embarrassed and disgusted about how I was running and took off my Hillrunner shirt - I did not want anyone seeing that name with how I was running.

Coming into the last quarter mile were a couple of boys not older than 10! I gave them encouraging words and one of the boys took off with a great kick towards the finish line. I kept telling the other one to "go get him" but I think he was done and just eyeing the finish line. I started to accelerate a tiny bit being mindful of how my back felt. I didn't even look at the time clock as I crossed the line - just did some more light stretching and massaging of my back and drank some water.

I did not look at results until today. 78 out of 800 and 7th out of 75 in my age group. Both put me in the top 10% of each category but I had a terrible day. I was on pace to make 17th overall and 2nd in my age group. I know what I am capable of now if race day is "my day."

Quote this postQuote

Ed, sorry to hear that the back got the best of you. It sounds like you were on track for a good one.

I'll email you about this. Just want to get some of your thoughts on this. We want to make sure you're not going to experience the same type of issue in a month.

Quote this commentQuote

So sorry Ed. No one wants something like this to happen on race day. Do you think the back pain had anything to do with your race day shoes?

Quote this commentQuote

Thanks Charlene. I do not have race day shoes - I use the same ones that I train with.

Quote this commentQuote
Post a comment as a guest:
Note: Guest posts are moderated. Your post will not appear immediately.
Your name:
Your email (will not be displayed):
Bold ([b]text[/b]) Italics ([i]text[/i]) Underline ([u]text[/u]) Center ([center]text[/center]) Quote ([quote]text[/quote]) Insert image ([img]URL[/img]) Insert link ([url]address[/url] OR [url=address]text[/url])