Friday, January 15, 2016

LVTC 10k Race Report- Hoping to fix my heel striking

Well I feel a little silly ranting and raving about my Garmin issues.   I also want to warn you that this is going to be one of those long rambling posts, I have a few things I would like to mention.

A few days before the race
I had a 10k race scheduled on my calendar for the Hal Higdon Training program that I am using.

 I didnt' think that I would be racing, because I thought my son had a birthday party to attend. (that was the reason I couldn't race this event last year).  It turns out that the party will be held at a later date, and my schedule was now clear to race on Saturday.

I did speed work on Tuesday, and then I tried to keep my workouts on the light side in anticipation for Saturday's race.  I took Friday off completely as a rest day.

Saturday Morning
I was up early to bake, and assemble breakfast for my family.  I really enjoy baking/cooking first thing in the morning.  Last year for my birthday I received a wonderful Kitchen Aid mixer, and I have been using the hell out of that thing.  I love to make home made bread from scratch,

 and I also like to make muffins and waffle batter.

For my pre-race breakfast I whipped up a batch of Oat Hemp Berry Muffins.  These muffins are vegan.  Let me know if you want the recipe and I will post it.

My kids aren't vegan so they had Greek Yogurt Chocolate Chip Pancakes.

I also ate half of a banana, and I drank a cup of coffee.

The race had a 9am start time, which is a little on the late side for me, but it was nice that I didn't have to hurry up and leave, first thing in the morning.

The weather was going to be a crisp 42 degrees at the start. IMO it wasn't cold enough for tights.  I went with boy shorts, a t-shirt, and beanie hat. I'm a terrible blogger and I didn't take a picture of my race outfit.  I also wore my light weight shoes that I reserve for speed work only.

My co-worker Clarice was also going to meet me down at the race.  She wanted to check out the LVTC race scene.  She was so sweet she even made a sign for me.

It was  great to see some of the LVTC members.  I don't get to race too often, and half of the fun is saying hello to old friends, and meeting new members as well.

I was having issues with my Garmin the day before, so I brought my regular TIMEX watch just in case.  I'm so glad I made that decision.

I ran a short warm up with my friend Jamie, we ran about 1.7 miles.  I had tried to save the data on my new watch, and the data didn't save..... Uh oh.

I stretched, and did a few strides, then I striped off my warm up outfit (yoga pants, cheap target pullover), and went into the corrals.  I lined up a few rows back and then it was go time.
I'm behind the first two rows of dudes.

The horn went off, and I started both of my watches.  My Garmin was working as far as pace, and time.  But, to be honest, I didn't really look down at my watches much during the race.  For the past 5-6 weeks, I have been running blind and, I'm okay with just running by feel...After the run, is when it's time to analyze the data....
unfortunately this is the only photo from the
race that I'm in :(
I'm all the way to the left with the grey beanie on.

The first mile climbed 122 feet
Mile 1- 7:25

I hit the first turn around point and I noticed that I was the 8th woman overall. The course was well marked with mile markers at each mile point.  The next two miles were downhill.

Mile 2-6:53 (-123 feet)
During this mile I noticed that my left hip niggle was starting to hurt... This meant that I was doing something wrong with my stride....*Sorry for the tangent***  

As of late I am really trying to be diligent about proper running form.  I have to lift my knees high enough off of the ground in order for my foot to land properly instead of an ugly heel strike.

This was from the marathon, my heel striking
is especially ugly on the left side.
No wonder my hip hurt!!!
After I got my photos back from the marathon, I was shocked at how much I freaking heel strike now.  I can get away with it when I'm running a slower pace, but when you try to run fast (it's all relative), the force of the heel striking is causing some horrible things to happen with my hip....

I used to be able to do the splits with my left leg in front (gymnastics when I was a kid , and martial arts in my 20's).... I don't really have a practical use for doing the splits in my day to day life now, but by losing flexibility over the years, when I over stride I'm reaching out to the ground with my heel first... EWWWWW....

Now that I have figured out what bothers my hip, I'm am trying to increase my flexibility and strength on that side. Form drills such as high knees, butt kicks, and A-skips help, and in the gym I am doing side step ups onto a bench and single leg lunges.. **end of tangent**

Because my hip started to talk to me, I knew that I must be heel striking, I immediately told myself "lift your knees land with your whole foot, not just your heel".  It seemed to work and the niggle went away.

Mile 3 - 7:03 (-82 feet)  We were on a stretch of bike path that was concrete, but then we made a loop around a dirt track to the turn around point and then we  headed back up the bike path

Mile 4 7:39 (64 foot gain)
I tried to just focus on the runners ahead of me.

Mile 5 7:50 (100 foot gain)

At the final turn around point I noticed that James A. (my arch rival, I'm kidding, but he never fails to out kick me) was closing the gap.

Mile 6 7:07 (-44 feet) During this mile I'm working my butt off to not get picked off, but sure enough James goes right by me.  I held on though for a bit before I got dropped, and I was able to pass another runner as well.

Mile .2 1:28

I  could feel the dry heaves coming.  I crossed the finish line and then I puked a little bit.  Good times for sure.

Watch Time: 45:35
Please excuse my gross cuticles
and runner feet.

Official Time 45:30

I ended up being the 7th woman overall and 3rd in my age group.  There were some speedsters out there for sure.

I borrowed this data from one of my Strava buddies that also ran this event.

I'm kind of bummed that I didn't take any photos before or after the race.  But, I am really happy with my finish time.  I think now that I have addressed my hip issue, I will try to work on getting stronger, and hopefully race more often this year.

I'm sorry for this being such a long blog post.

Thank you for reading!


  1. Nice race, Dolly! So cool that you've figured out how to take care of your hip. I am still working on that, two surgeries later! But I do agree that mobility plays a part.
    And, I've also been doing some form drills more consistently: I used to do them on Sundays, when I run soft surfaces, and track days, but when I stopped track, it dwindled to just one day a week. Now that I'm back running track Tuesday mornings, our group has decided to make form drills a habit again. I hope they help me like they've helped you!

  2. Great finish time!

    You're reminding me that I need to get back to form drills after my latest ache fully heals. Those high knees things really help with speed too, and that what I've lost the most of since dialing back my training.