Monday, March 12, 2012

Race Result: 2012 Chase a Leprechaun 5K

Event: 2012 Chase a Leprechaun 5K (March 10, 2012)
Location: Becker Community Center, Becker MN
Weather:  46F, sunny, wind from SW at 12-16 MPH
Goal: sub-20 minutes
Actual: 18:51
Overall: 4th (138 total)
Age Group (50-59): 1st (6 total)
Results Link: Becker AG Breakdown
Previous Results: 19:36 (2011)

Last year (2011) at this event, the weather line looked like this: 16F, winds 30-35 MPH, windchill at -4. What a difference a year can make. I ran in shorts and on top I opted for a long-sleeved UnderArmor with my Fargo Running Company race team singlet over that. And I was probably a tad warm.

Shortly before the race started I turned to the Boy and the Well Kept Wife and said, "I've got nothing." The legs felt dead, I'm still nursing that suspected Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome in the left shin, and I was already looking ahead to the St. Patricks Day 5K in Fargo. That is a key race for me this early spring season and I was using the Becker race as a report card to see how I stood.

I need not worry so much.

After the gun went off I had purposely shot to be up near the front as we started out on a bike path. That meant I didn't want to be blocked in. This also meant that my early pace was in the 5:20 range. After I found myself with plenty of room I started to dial it back. Hit 5:40ish pace and kept dialing it back finally settling in the low 6:05 territory. I was in eighth as we went thru the first mile (6:07).

Shortly before we hit the first mile I was passed by a young lady, Chelsea Schlegel wearing Vibrams. I would run with her for the rest of the race. She was exactly what I needed to keep up a sub-6:20 pace. One or the other would fall off but then come back to rest on either runners shoulder.

She and I started to pick off the pretenders and before we hit mile 2 we found ourselves in 3rd/4th place. I was very happy to go through mile 2 at 6:18 pace. I wanted to maintain 6:20 or better pace as my Fargo tune-up and it was going well. Despite my pre-race doubts, the legs seemed to have some snap to them and were holding up well.

As we turned for the finish, my race partner surged and I was content to let her go. I didn't need to sprint home for this race. That's next weekend. My pace of 6:20 for the final mile, and overall average of 6:15 was better than hoped for.

The course was about 0.09 miles short per the Garmin. So I calculate my 18:51 overall time was a true 5K time of 19:25. I was hoping to be around 19:40. This is the perfect tonic for any mental doubts for the 5K in Fargo. And the weather looks to be even better for next weekend!

Of note: The Boy® set a new PR with a 5K equivalent (once I converted to a true 5K) of a 24:10. And this was with a slight cold. Good stuff.



Next Event:

March 17 - St. Patrick's Day 5K Run - Fargo, ND

This one is important for a few reasons. One, I've been on the Fargo Running Company Race Team since last year. So obviously, I hope to have a good showing for the home team. Two, this will kick off the 2012 LAP (Lake Agassiz Pacers) Race Series under the following guidelines:

- runner does not need to be a LAP member
- runner must compete in 3 of 5 races in 2012 (best 3 times used for performance rating)
- results based on age-grade performance
- awards given out 10 deep, gender neutral

I'd like to end the year within that Top Ten category. Again, this is based on Age Grade performance which I have written about plenty of times. Most recently in my recap of the Treadmill 1-Mile World Championship.

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