Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Big Game 10k Race Recap

I could have named this recap "how to positively split a 10k", but I won't.  I also have a running injury/issue that I want to address.

I made it in just under my "C" goal.  I'm not too disappointed with my performance.  I have quite a few different thoughts about this race overall,  There were issues with the course, timing, and results. I hope I can give an honest and coherent recap.

Before the Race
I saw this race online a few months ago, I was waiting until after the holidays to register, it was a good thing I waited because  a Groupon was being offered and I only paid $19 for the race.   But, you get what you pay for...
The course could have been set up  much better than this
The 5k course also merged with the 10k course during the
second half.

I also did some speed work earlier in the week at Cornerstone Park.  At the time I thought this was a splendid idea.  I only had to run 6 x 400 meters.  Hindsight is now 20/20 and I wish I would have stayed off of the concrete paths in the park.

Morning of the Race
I got up a little before 5am and made breakfast.  I had a small pancake with butter, half of a banana, two eggs, and coffee.  I fed my kids breakfast and then I got dressed.   The temps were going to be in the low 50's with no wind so I went with a T-shirt and shorts. I also turned a pair of cheap pajama socks into hand warmers..  For shoes I decided to go with my Brooks Launch shoes instead of my Brooks Pure Flows.
Even though you are about 5 years old. You are still
a great pair of shoes.

When I had done a speed workout earlier in the week at Corner Stone Park, and  I noticed that my Pure Flows were feeling kind of worn and I could really feel the road beneath my feet.  The Brooks Launch offers a bit more cushioning and feels more like a normal running shoe.

I left my house at 6:30 to drive to the downtown area.  The race started at 8am but, I wanted to get good parking and have time to warm up.  My; friend Jenn was also running the 10k that morning.  I waited for her and then we went to packet pick up together.

It's always nice to have my friend with me,  it makes the time before the race go by so much faster, and it helps me from getting too nervous.  I also said hello to fellow runners that I recognized.
Cheap socks make great throwaway gloves.
I love my Jenny!

For my warm up I jogged a mile and I did  a few strides.  My groin and hip felt a  little tight.

The Race
My goal was to run a negative split race, and keep my pace in the low seven minute range, and hopefully break 44 minutes....
I lined up a few rows back from the front.  I noticed that the Red Rock Running Team was representing.  They have a women's and men's team with some pretty fast local runners.  I knew I didn't have a shot at top 3 women overall, but I was hoping to at least snag an age group award.  At the last minute I decided to wear my ipod.  I'm really glad I made that choice.

The gun went off and I found my groove.  I looked down at my watch and saw 6:30 pace (shit!) and I backed off a bit.  There were a few ladies in front of me and I hoped that I could reel a few of them in.

Mile 1-7:02

When we rounded the corner, we had to run down a street to the end and then flip a 180 degree turn to run back down the street.  No biggie, except there were four 180 degree turns throughout the race, and  I was also worried that some runners wouldn't be honest and would try to cut across the road before they made it to the turn around point....

Mile 2-7:12

I turned on my ipod, and focused on the runners ahead of me.  At the first turn around point I noticed that I was the 8th woman overall.

Toshie is also wearing orange and she is closing the gap
between us.

Mile 3-7:10
I was able to catch one female runner ahead of me during this mile, and I passed a few dudes.  My runner friend Toshie also went cruising by me during this mile.  I didn't have enough will to try to hang with her.  She seemed to be running much stronger than I was.

Mile 4-7:20
The 5k race started 15 minutes after the 10k start.  The lead males began to pass me.  My left hip/quad is burning like a mother.  I can run, but it hurts.

Mile 5 -7:26
I can feel someone breathing down my neck,  With a mile to go he makes his move to pass me. But, he didn't get to far away from me. Another guy passed the both of us.

Mile 6- 7:28
I knew we were getting close to the finish,  I don't think I realized how close the end was,  I had a really good finishing kick, and I was able to out kick the two guys that I was sort of running with.

.27  1:53  (6:53 pace)

Garmin Time 45:31
Official Time 44:59

10th woman overall and 3rd in my age group.

Okay this is where the rant comes in..... They messed up the finish line/course.  Quite a few 10k runners cut the course short at the end.  There were no barricades to prevent the runners from cutting the course. I even remember my friend Toshie taking a wrong turn, and having to turn around before the finish line,

Here's a snapshot of my pace..

I would have to slow down each time I hit a corner or turn around. point   It's hard to keep your momentum going, with all of the turns.

Also I could have sworn that I was the 8th female overall.  I know that with chip timing someone could start after me, and finish after me and have a faster time, but that's not what happened.

They had the 5th place finisher finishing in 40:XX (chip time) and her gun time was finishing 44:45, about 14 seconds ahead of me, that means she would have had to have passed right by me during the final stretch of the course.  But, that didn't happen!!!  (they have since cleaned up the final results to show chip time only).  Also how come there is such a big difference between my Garmin time and the chip time?  I know it works in my favor, but  I can't really take credit for running that fast....

This wasn't a huge race and in the grand scheme of things NO1CURR.

Here's a picture of the winners

Erica was 3rd, Laura was 1st, and Amanda was 2nd.
The first two ladies went sub 39, and Erica went sub 40.
These ladies are also really friendly and nice

After the race I was really effing worried.  My groin felt really tight and I had a dull throbbing ache on the side of my hip as well.

I didn't stick around for the awards because I had to hurry home.

Running Injury/Issue

My left hip has been bothering me for a little while.  I'm not exactly sure when things started to get screwy.  I"m not even really sure what is wrong with my hip....  Last month I think I pulled a small muscle in my hip while doing one legged planks on a stability ball.
Back in September when I ran the Saints and Sinners half, I noticed that my left quad/hip started to burn during the 4th mile of the race.  I just figured it was from the downhill pounding of the course. If we go back even further, I suffered a groin strain on my left leg in March right before the Mustang Half Marathon.

I don't really remember my hip bothering me much during the Rock n Roll Las Vegas Marathon or during my brief marathon training.  I don't think running mileage is the problem, so much as pace being the problem.

The last month has been pretty heavy on speed work. weight training, and tempo runs. It's only been 10 weeks since RNR Vegas.  Since then I have raced a half marathon, took one week to recover from that, and then I threw myself into speed work training for this 10k....

And in all honesty I don't even think that my speed workouts made any difference.  I think I could have just trained for this 10k by running my normal mileage and weight training.  I think I'm a real big idiot for trying to whip myself up into "fast' 10k shape in one month's time.

I could have probably had the same effect if I would have  just lost a few vanity pounds....

Right now I'm just feeling sorry for myself.  I went for a short run today, I was able to run, almost three miles (yay!)  however, when I tried to speed up while crossing the street I felt my hip twinge.

I have since decided that there will be no spring half marathon.    I'm writing this out so that I am held  accountable.  I will not be doing any speed work for the next two months.  For the next month I'm going to be doing very light running.   I have to give my hip time to heal.  I'm hoping that this is a muscle strain and nothing more serious.

I'm sorry for the rant, and thanks for reading :)


  1. Hip injuries suck. I don't think I realized how much I use my hips until I hurt my right one last summer. I hope you're able to figure your issue out and heal.

    I really hate race courses that make it easy to short cut. I've noticed a lot of problems in races due to this. There was one race that by my husband's counting, I was 4th or 5th female, but I ended up being 9th. There was a 5k on the same course that would've made cutting easy and there were next to no marshals on the course and only finish line mats. I don't understand the cheating mentality because, like you, I want an honest result (like how I'm still bugged by my technical 5k PR on a course that was slightly short and don't count it). I'm always glad when runners/blogger's share these sorts of stories so I don't feel like I'm a paranoid nut noticing cheaters cheating. At the end of the day, my results are mine and it doesn't matter what other people do. But I just don't like cheaters.

    Still, you did awesome and congrats on your AG win!

    1. After the race it took forever for the results to post, I'm surprised that some of the roads were not barricaded. I'm also irritated that someone would accept an age group award, if they knew they cut the course short. But, yeah in the grand scheme of things it doesn't really matter.

      I'm hoping that taking it easy for the next two months will help me, recharge my batteries and hopefully my hip will be back to normal.

      Now what am I going to blog about? (Lol)

  2. Oof, I'm super paranoid about my hips now... I think you're making the right call, but also work the heck out of core and hips to strengthen (things I wish I'd done!). And of course, you ARE going to replace your shoes soon, right????
    Congratulations on your AG place, and take it easy and get well.

    1. I'm really good about strength training, but I suck at stretching. I also sit on my butt in an office chair most of the day.

      I was joking about my BRooks Launch shoes, believe it or not, that was only the 6th time I've worn them and the have less than 100 miles on them. They are still springy/soft/ have some shoe life left.

      My Pure Flows on the other hand may have made me question minimalist/low heel to toe drop shoes. Im not really good at explaining biomechanics, but I think my hip/groin issue is because of the torque/ force used when running harder paces.

      I actually did purchase a new pair of Ravennas before the race. I'm hoping to go for a short run today.

      Thank you for the well wishes, I hate throw out the age card, but i am now noticing that i really have to watch it now that I'm getting closer to the Masters division.