Archive for 10k

Toeing the Line

Posted in motivation, photos, races, road, running, Uncategorized with tags , , , on May 27, 2014 by afuntanilla

I don’t race many 10k races….or at least I haven’t done so in the past 5 years. I ran many of them in the late 90’s. Yet, as I have now been sticking to longer distances, the 10k race has kinda fallen away from my radar. Since the beginning of the year, or at least since February, I’ve made more of an effort to work on speed. I’ve done some work here, but honestly nothing too intense or rigorous. Running the longer distances has a way of making me feel really slooooow. Granted, some of this is probably because I don’t vary the training enough. Anyways…i’ve tried to make an effort to increase speed to a level that is satisfactory. So far this year, I ran a 5 miler and a 15k, both with finishes I was pleased with. The 15k was run at 9:13 pace and the 5 miler at 8:46 pace.  I wanted to get in another short race so I signed up for a local 10k in Marin County.

I ran the course last weekend so that I would be familiar come race day. I had been in the general area before, but not too much. Running the course gave me the opportunity to see the gorgeous surroundings….basically the first 3-4 miles are all through Kentfield and Ross, which are 2 of the most beautiful (and expensive areas) in the Bay Area. Quiet, lovely streets with huge trees all around. (The trees would provide much needed shade on a warm race day morning.)

 

IMG_0927After this area, the course popped onto the College of Marin Campus and onto a paved path that travels the outskirts of the campus for a mile and then basically loops back through Larkspur and ends with a 3/4 lap around the college track. Very Cool Finish!

So, race morning came and I figured the crowd would be full of some very fast runners. Man, was I correct! This was actually a Championship Race for Pacific-Association USA Track and Field and there were some nice monetary awards for the best club teams as well as top individuals. So, it was no surprise when I showed up in the parking area and was feeling a bit intimidated by the array of people in their Club Tanks…Tamalpa Runners, West Marin Track Club, etc… This was NOT your typical local 10k. Everyone looked super fit. Anyhow…soon we were off and I was just trying to stay focused on my personal goal which was to finish between 56-57 minutes. My running in the last month (since the 5 mile race) has not been a lot. I did a lot of short runs and only ran 6 miles once, which was last weekend. I was running 3-5 mile stints at about 8:45-9:15 pace but i wasn’t sure what I could do on race day.

Off we went and the first 2 miles felt fast. I ran 1st at 8:40 and 2nd at 8:48 and HR felt pretty high. I knew I couldn’t sustain this pace and kept telling myself to slow down. But, I didn’t. Mile 3 was 8:48 also. Again, I told myself to slow down or else I might not have enough come mile 5 etc… So, I did. I also carried my own water, which was needed as there were only 2 water stops and honestly, I have NO idea how people ran this race at those fast paces with not much water. It was pretty warm.  I actually stopped for about 20 seconds after mile 3 just to get my HR down a bit. Keeping on, I was in a nice groove and around 4 other runners and we were all running together. A slight shift ahead for one of us and then the other. It was fun to be in this mini race within a race. The jockeying and surveying….3 women and 2 men. The 2nd half of the race, I slowed down. My pace was 9:25 but the 5 of us kept hanging together. Until the last 3/4 miles…I pulled ahead and thought i was in the clear to the finish. At about 1/4 mile to go, one of the other women passed me and I could not catch her. She ran well. I did rev it up for the last bit, I was just not able to stay with her. As I crossed the finish line and put my hands on my knees, hunched over, I thought: ” i could not have pushed any harder.” And that was my truth at that moment. As I write this now, hours later, recovered and all, I can’t help but wonder: “could I have? Could I have pushed harder and at what point could I have done so?”

I think that’s what we do…that’s what runners do…we wonder and we question. We beg to know what we are capable of on any given day. Or at least, I am!

But, for today, Yes…I am satisfied with my effort & the result. I pushed my body hard and enjoyed the challenge, both externally and internally.

Watch Finish Time: 6.3 miles/56:47/8:59 pace

Official Chip Time: 6.2 miles/56:45/9:08 pace

I prefer the watch finish time, but oh well!

 

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So, what’s next???

 

 

 

 Oh, Peachtree…

Posted in motivation, photos, races, running, travel with tags , , , , , on July 7, 2013 by afuntanilla
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I have not found a way to successfully “race” the Peachtree 10k Road Race. I lived in Atlanta for 13 years and ran the race 4 times as a resident. I’ve now completed my 3rd time running the event as a non-resident. It was not “easier” as a resident who had the time to acclimate. My finish times were a bit better while residing in the languishing heat and sultry humidity, but the running the race itself has always been for me an experience of knowingly putting my body under duress. Because even though I haven’t felt like I was actually “racing” like I can in other 10k races, I have always gone out there trying to do my best and go as fast as possible on the given sweaty and patriotic 4th of July morning.
It had been a rain of frequent rain before Peachtree and the forecast for race time was 100% rain forecasted. I welcomed the forecast as I LOVE to run in the wet stuff in Atlanta. I love the feel of the large, heavy drops plopping on my skin in the hot summers. While a resident, I was caught in more than a few rainstorms on my training runs and I got soaked and SOAKED in the experience on all of them. It always felt a bit magical to me….running along a quiet Atlanta street, so many trees near and far, the green leaves glistening in the distance and the rain pouring down in front of me. AHHHHHH…..no where near a nuisance, but a gentle companion (except those FEW exceptions when there may have been hacking thunderstorms)
So, yes, I would not have minded the rain. Unfortunately, the rain did not grace herself for us; nor did the heat. The humidity did show up, though, in full force. Temperature on race morning was about 72 degrees, 95% humidity. Ouch.
Welcome to Atlanta!
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 PRE-RACE
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I walked the short distance from the hotel to the starting line. Along the way, the Elite Women had begun. They were the 1st group to start. A large group of us who were walking to our respective start areas all stopped, dead in our tracks, to watch these phenomenal women athletes. The small group of women ran swiftly by us, looking like a pack of gazelles….their strides so graceful, smooth, and fast! After they passed by us, we all kinda turned to each other and smiled that “wow” smile when you witness something great! Pretty cool!
Onward toward my starting wave, Wave C, start time to be 7:41 a.m. Well, as group A began, group B and C moved up, but my area of Group C somehow got lumped in with group B, so my start time moved up 5 minutes and as such, my Garmin was not ready when I started. I had been waiting for it to calculate my position for GPS purposes, but by start time, it was still “thinking”, which was frustrating. So, I began.
Mile 1 – from Lenox Mall and through Buckhead. Flat. Just feeling my way into it. PACE Unknown
Mile 2- by now, my gps was working so I began my watch at this time. This mile is flat to downhill. At 2.8 miles, my client, who is 88, had been along the route to cheer me on. How cool is that??! I was delighted to see him. I gave him a big hug and he said, ” go get ’em, kid!” PACE 8:44
Mile 3 – the gradual then steep climb up to Piedmont Hospital and then flat for about 1/4 mile. PACE 9:07
Mile 4 – really started to feel sluggish here. thinking i probably needed more to eat than just the 1 Powerbar for breakfast. Not sure what I was thinking. Legs didn’t feel too bad, just feeling like I needed some energy. PACE 9:46
Mile 5 – always a deceptively difficult mile. looong gradual uphill mile. more sluggish. they had water stations at every mile marker and i took a few sips at each one….slowing down a little bit more at each station. PACE 10:22 (ouch)
Mile 6 – flat, short super small incline, and then downhill across the finish line. PACE 9:17
Finish Time: 58:56
Happy to have completed another Peachtree, but a bit disappointed I did not have a better finish time. While running, I actually thought it was a little faster. I just went through my computer to see what my best result was here and I CANNOT BELIEVE IT, but my best finish time at Peachtree WAS in FACT when I was a NON-RESIDENT!! I ran the race in 2003 with a finish time of 54:09
Well…what does that tell ya??!
NOTHING! Just gotta laugh.
POST – RACE
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Thanks to my buddy in Sharon, in Atlanta, for hanging with me and cheering me on!
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Still here

Posted in races, running with tags , , , on April 25, 2013 by afuntanilla

Hello there – still here. Life has just been real busy and it’s been hard finding time and energy to write. However, I am working on some future posts that will tell what I hope to be a good running “story”. It will be about THE PEACHTREE ROAD RACE. I got in this year and will run the 10k race on July 4, 2013 in Atlanta.  The first time I ran the race was back in 1998 and there were no blogs around at that time. So, of course, I will need to give you some background on why THAT race. Stay tuned….

Also, hoping to run a half marathon in June. Haven’t signed up just yet….

Run Happy. Run Strong.