Omer 10k - 26 January 2008
So today, I really didn't have a specific, concrete goal in mind, though I was hoping for a 6:00/km pace.
We had some very loud thunder storms all night long and I thought they might cancel the race. It was still raining when I woke up, but there was no more thunder and lightening, so after briefly debating whether or not this was really how I wanted to spend my Saturday morning, I
got up, ate breakfast, got dressed and drove off to the race, about 15 minutes away.
I did a 2 km warm up and then I really started asking myself if I wanted to race. My legs were really achy, as they have been at the start of just about every run I've done this winter, and I knew that 2 km wasn't going to be enough to get rid of the achiness, but it was all I had time to do. I was soon standing on the starting line, minus the strap on my heart rate monitor, which I'd brought with me, but forgot to put on. I decided I'd just go by feeling and pace today.
The race started and the first km was ok. In fact, it was faster than the pace that I more or less wanted to run -- I finished the first km in 5:42 and it felt really good and not too hard. However, around the end of that km, my legs started to ache again and they would continue to ache for the next four km or so. Ugh. I hit the halfway point in 30:44, slower than I had hoped, and I was still having some trouble actually picking up my feet.
I don't know when it happened, but somewhere around 6 or 7 km, I finally loosened up a bit and felt like I could run. I looked at my watch at 7 km and saw that my chances of going under an hour were practically nill, but that maybe I could PR (my PR for 10k was 1:00:48, set at Ein Gedi two years ago). With only 3 km to go and my legs finally feeling good again, I picked up the pace a bit. For the last 3 km, I averaged well under 6:00/km. With 2 km to go, I pushed as hard as I could, still hoping to PR.
I crossed the finish line and looked at my watch. All I could see was 1:00 (that screen didn't show me the seconds), so I knew I hadn't gone under an hour, but I also knew I wasn't far off my PR for 10k. Then I saw that my Garmin read 10.1 km. Once again, the course had been long. A closer look showed me that the course was off by 120 meters. My time for 10.12 km was 1:00:56, eight seconds off my 10k PR, but with the extra distance added in (and I'm pretty sure the course was accurately measured at Ein Gedi, which is a much bigger and more well-organized race), I believe that I PRed for 10k today. My average pace was 6:01/km, which was pretty close to what I had hoped for.
According to SportTracks, I finished the first 10k (before the additional 120 meters) in 1:00:23. A little bit frustrating, as that sub-1:00 10k is only 23 seconds away, but I'll take it. Oh, and I had a negative split, averaging 6:09/km for the first 5k and 5:54/km for the second 5k.
Once I get past the leg pain after 4 or 5 km, I think I'll do just fine in my half marathon in three weeks.