Sunday, February 05, 2006

22:36 - A 5K PR!

me, Jim, Jesse and Jay

Saturday was the first race of the Puma Race for the Cup. I picked up Jesse and his friend Jim at 5:00 a.m. for the 1.5 hour drive down to San Diego. I planned on getting up a little before 4:00 a.m. I did not sleep well for fear of not hearing the alarm. I must have been awake at least a half dozen times, waking in a panic, only to check the time and try to fall back to sleep. We got to the race in time to pick up our numbers and goodie bags (not much in them), make a stop at the porta potties and get in a little warm up jog before the race. The weather was in the low 60's and overcast.

There was both a 10K and a 5K race. There were 555 finishers in the 5K alone. There were a lot more people there than any of us had expected. On our way to pick up our bibs we ran into Jay, another friend of Jesse's that he had talked into the series. Jesse hadn't know ahead of time that Jay had actually signed up.

I didn't really have very high expectations for this race. I hadn't raced a 5K since the July 4th run last year. I was only hoping to at least match my best time of 24:00. Jesse, Jim and Jay lined up in the 2nd row. I took my spot a couple of rows back. I never really looked back to see how many people were behind me. The gun went off and it seemed as though everybody took off and left me behind. I got passed right away by quite few people. I felt like I had to be bringing up the rear and going pretty slowly.

I hit the first mile in 6:59. I was stunned. I think I've only done a 7:00 mile once before and I was really trying then. The course was basically an out and back. At the turn around I realized just how many people were behind me, I really wasn't bringing up the rear. I was running a few feet behind the same guy most of the way at this point. I hit mile 2 in 7:23. I began to wonder whether I could keep up this pace for much longer. I really tried to keep up with that guy a few feet ahead. When we got to the final approach I picked up the pace well before the finish line. The time on my watch was 22:43. Woohoo, a PR by 1:17. Not bad! I owe my rabbit a big Thank You!. I was really tired at first, but after I cooled off, I felt great. Today I checked the website for the official results and found this:

Place Name Age No. Div/Tot Sex City 5k Pace
115 DARRELL JAMES 44 853 15/36 M Covina 22:36 7:17

7 seconds faster than I had on my watch! I'm not sure which one is right but either way it was a great start to the 5K series. Now I have my work cut out for me to improve in the next three.

I attribute my improvement mostly to the relatively low mileage that I have been running since December. Jesse's time, by the way, was 20:34.

I really wanted to get some more mileage in this weekend. My half marathon is only 4 weeks away. The schedule had called for a 14 miler today. After I dropped of Jim and Jesse, I decided to go over the the Santa Ana River Trail and put in 10 miles. I felt pretty good at the start, but I was running in the middle of day. It got pretty warm, 75-ish and sunny. I hadn't brought any water. I started getting pretty tired by mile 7. My form (such as it is) had gone to pieces. I kept hitting my leg with the opposing heel.

Terry called in the afternoon and invited me to run at Chino Hills State Park on Sunday morning with some of her running friends. I really enjoy the trails so I couldn't pass it up. We ended up doing 8 miles in about 1 1/2 hours on a beautiful Sunday morning.

Weekly miles: 32.6
2006 miles: 75.8
Lifetime miles: 3522.1

This week's mileage is the most I've put in since the week of the NYC marathon.


Anne said...

Congratulations on the great run, Darrell. I just discovered your blog and it's nice to find another Southern Californian to read. I did the 10k and had a good time, too. The weather and flat course were a huge help!

Rae said...

Great job on the race!! That's an awesome time. I wish we could borrow your weather for a couple of days!!