Sunday, May 28, 2017

Training Week: May 22 - May 28 - Redhook 5k

Top 3 men in reverse order (me, Hamel, Nick) and then two of the 3 top women.

Week of May 22 - May 28

05-22 - [Monday] - AM: 10 miles roads (dirt/class vi/some pavement loop) from SOLO w/ Robert Molnar. Tasker to Townline to Modock to Glines to Bickford and back.

05-23 - [Tuesday] - PM: 10 miles trackwork.  3.1 mile w/ up (trails) and then 800 meters of straightaway sprints + corner floats into 10 x 400 at 74-75 with 200 continuous in between. I ran in the 2nd lane most of the time w/ Andy on the inside...Then cooldown around the track and school (all w/ Andy). Not too hard but better than nothing. Head wasn't in it today. Coming down with a cold (the entire family is now sick) and we had a rough couple days w/ one of our cats.  We ended up losing him in the morning after a 5 month battle with cancer.  We got him right after we got Deacon (our oldest cat) in 2004 when we moved into our first home in Salem.  We'll all miss him.

during happier, healthier times.
RIP Sheldon.  2004-2017.

05-24 - [Wednesday] - PM: 8 miles trails in Conway w/ Robert.

05-25 - [Thursday] - PM: 12 miles trails w/ Andy.

05-26 - [Friday] - AM: 5 miles roads/trails.

05-27 - [Saturday] - AM: 5 miles roads. PM:  6 miles roads with Andy.

05-28 - [Sunday] - PM: 3.5 mile w/ up + 5k race (Redhook 5k - 15:59 - 3rd OA (results)+ 4 mile cooldown.  New Masters 5k PR!!!!

66.6 miles for the week on 10 runs.  Big step in the right direction w/ a track workout, longer easy run, and the race. Was sick most of the week and surprised I ran as well as I did with the entire family being sick.  Also w/ losing Sheldon, it really was a mix of highs and very low lows...

It was my 8th run at Redhook this year.  I've been in the top 3 every year except the first year I ran it (in 2007). I've also broken 16 every year except the first year.  Last year it was close, getting 3rd and squeaking in in 15:58.  This year, it was no exception. It was by the thinnest of margins.  I not only 'technically' got 3rd place but I also broke 16 by ONE second...

The race was playing out to be a pretty fast one. The depth of the field was pretty good considering.  I warmed up with Andy Drummond and Zac Switaj and Nick Aguila. I fully expected Nick to win and was picking an 'out of shape' Zac to still crush me.  I also saw 2:17 marathoner Andy Huebner warming up right before the start and was now pushing myself out of the top 3.  I was kind of OK with it at first, thinking I would still have a good shot at being top master.  There were a handful of other good guys in the race too including Derrick Hamel who SHOULD be beating me daily...although I've been able to get a few 'W's this year against him.

The gun went off and the pace was fairly hot.  There was a gigantic pack of guys all together for the entire first mile. It was crazy. I would have loved to have seen video of the race from the lead vehicle perspective.  I led early with Nick. We were side by side and cutting into a pretty strong headwind that was steady on the way out.  There were easily 10 back behind in a tight pack including 11 year old sensation Aiden Cox.  Shortly before the first mile, I dropped back a bit and 4 or 5 guys moved up.  Hamel came up and took the lead with Nick and a couple others.  Zac was in front of me and Chris Dunn was pushing up with the leaders.

We went through in a tick over 5 minutes for the first mile and Andy looked at me and said 'this isn't slow'.  I agreed.  It felt hot but I didn't want to let the pack go.  I stubbornly hung on but Derrick and Nick started to gap everyone a little bit.  Probably at about 1.25 or so I counted 6 guys in front of me and Andy was right next to me.  I started thinking that 7th was my worst place here (in 2007).  If Andy dropped me, I'd be in 8th.  I wasn't having it.  I moved on ahead and Andy and I both split by Justin Trott.  Then I moved ahead of Andy just a bit and came up past Zac on the only real slight uphill on the course at around 1.5 miles.  Not soon after that I caught and passed Chris.  I then had my sights on Hamel and soon found myself in 3rd place at 2 miles.

I occasionally peeked back and it was a who's who of guys right on my tail. I wasn't really dropping anyone.  I kept my foot on the gas and went through 2 in around 10:04-10:05.  I then focused solely on keeping the pedal down because Andy was closing and it seemed like Zac and Chris weren't letting go either.  As I took the turn onto the last road (about .6 to the finish), Andy pulled right up behind me and was breathing loudly.  He really sounded like he was pushing and I put the pedal down again and tried to pull away a couple times. I could only put a little bit of distance on him at a time and it seemed like he was coming right back.  Chris was right behind him and closing.  I then found myself right up to Derrick and just went clean on by him but I was laboring.  I had been slowly catching him and ASSUMED that once I went by and kept moving at the same pace passed him, that he'd eventually fall out of range.  I was wrong.

I hit the last turn into the Redhook parking lot and the 3 mile mark and could hear and see the finish.  I was in 2nd but then Derrick blew past me like I was standing still (video evidence below).  I was completely done and was just focusing on not letting a complete disaster happen in the last 25 yards.   Derrick had come back from the dead after doing a lot of work early with Nick but getting dropped at about 1.5.  He decided not to settle and fought back and got some much needed Seacoast Series points by beating me.  As I headed towards the line I looked up and saw 15:57-15:58 on the clock.  I knew I had done it.  Broken the mystical 16 minute barrier as a 40 year old.  My official time was 15:59 (gun and clock)...which brings me to my last interesting tidbit.  This is the first time this has happened to me, but if you watch the video below, you see that a ridiculously fast charging Chris Dunn is motoring up behind me for a very strong finish.  He was 4th across the line but he lined himself up a few rows behind me at the start and subsequently he had a 1 second faster 'chip' time than me.  So in the printed results, he shows 3rd with a 15:58 chip time but a 16:00 gun time.  But in the order of finish (gun) across the line, for the sake of awards, cash, etc. I got 3rd because I was 1 second ahead of him across the line.  I was actually shocked when I saw the results after the race because I didn't even see him behind me at the end that close. I came across completely in 3rd and never even knew he pulled within 1 second to me on the line. I thought it was a typo...and I went to the timers and they were perplexed too. It wasn't until I noticed his chip time vs gun time being off by 2 seconds.  I had identical times.  Matt Sawyer told me after the race that he knew he had lined up a few rows back.... I cross the line in 3rd but technically from timing mat to timing mat he was 1 second faster than I was.  It cost him $75 though as they do awards and placement based on gun time.  On Coolrunning they listed the results by chip time.  He knows for next time :). I told him he's now officially a sub 16 guy and he needs to make sure his butt is on the line :).  He'll probably hand me my ass at Market Square Day but then again, most people will...I still can't figure out 10ks!

All in all, I am very happy w/ the race.  Podium, cash, and a sub 16 for the first time as a master.  I had 3.19 on my Garmin and the race is certified so I'm set to update my blog with a nice faster masters PR. Hopefully I can still bring it down a bit...but I'm not sure by how much. I really worked for this one.

Start of the race:

Finish of the race (thanks Youtube for selecting the thumbnail below):

Me w/ Sheldon back in Salem, NH....many years ago.

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