Tuesday, October 1, 2013

MEC Musquodoboit Trail 5km Run Race Report - 2013

So I have had a crazy month. Back from Iceland at the beginning, and right back at the rehab for my hip. Then I had company for over a week, so limited training (but loads of fun) then off to the West Coast for work, where there was actually no place to run. I managed one little 6 km trail run for fun, but spent most of my time on islands with a beach that was no more than 500 meters long and covered in wet thick round stones.

Anyway, I had hoped this year to be doing the usual Rum Runner Relay thing, but I wasn't going to be home in time, so I had to give up my spot of the team. As I hadn't planned on being home until super early Sunday morning, I had also assumed that my whole weekend would be shot anyway. But I did end up coming home super early Saturday instead, giving me a recovery day and a chance to do something on Sunday.

Well a quick check online showed me that MEC had a trail run planned that day. And at $15, well how could I pass that up. With the Riverport Duathlon coming up this weekend, I opted to run the 5 km event. This was a two fold reason, 1. I hadn't been training much for distance so a 15 km run would be hard and a 10 km run would be far too slow for my liking and 2. I wanted to see what sort of speed I had left after a summer without much training.

I lined up at the start line and looked around. I knew no one and had no clue what sort of pace anyone else would be running. So it was down to just doing my best and seeing what sort of gas was in the tank.

From the start I surged ahead, hitting a comfortably hard pace. I checked the Garmin and it said 3:08 min/km. Hmmm, I thought, that might be a bit ambitious. Still I figured I would hold that for the first half a kilometer then drop into my usual 5 km pace.  Either someone would have to surge up and catch me or else I would be able to keep the lead I had built.

Well I kept it for the first half of the race anyway, falling into a  3:45 min/km pace. My heart rate was way high though, top of  Zone 4 and dipping into Zone 5. Could I hold this for long? Well I kept going with it because I had no option at this point.

By 3 kilometers into the race I was caught by one guy. He pulled up and asked how fast we did the first 2.5 kms. I hadn't really checked and had no clue, but it was pretty fast. At this point he was close to my speed, but he certainly wasn't breathing as hard as I was. I knew that if he pulled away I was doomed. I stayed on his heels for the next kilometer, but with 1 to go, he kept his speed up and I had a few dips, dropping to above 4 min/km for a few times. As I fell off his feet I had no chance to surge back up and decided to do my best to maintain as best as I could.

My heart was still blasting through my chest and my breathing was really hard, but my legs (and most importantly hip) felt great. I saw the finish line clock and tried to pull off a bit of a sprint at the end but just couldn't beat the 18:40 mark and settled for 18:41 at the line. Good enough for second overall and while not my best 5 km run, at least it was still good and fast and nice to see that my speed wasn't completely gone.

Congrats to the winner, who himself had been coming back from injury. And third was not too far behind, though couldn't quite dip below 19 min.

Next up the Duathlon final for the year. Can't wait.

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