Masters Running

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Strength of field vs age group? (Read 429 times)

    I'm not sure this doesn't belong under "racing" but let me ask you guys first, since you're my age! How does your performance rank in your age group compared with the field as a whole? I ask because I have noticed there is not much difference in most of my races, which may mean a fairly quick bunch of old geezers, or perhaps its typical. (These are from Toronto races.) Examples: My first half marathon in October 1:55:18 came 39/100 in M55-59 39th. percentile came 1264/3492 overall 36th. percentile My first 10k in May 2007 51:50 came 67/165 in M55-59 40th. percentile came 2969/8003 overall 37th percentile. In this race the top guy in my age group ran the 10k in 35:15, four ran under 40 minutes! Smoking! I have looked at figures from past events, and there is not much difference, except at the 5k distance where the field is often weaker (appeals more to new runners?) except for a few really fast runners often down in the 16-18 minute range, clearly specialists at that distance. I was hoping to move into the top quarter of the results page this year, but maybe the top 1/3 is more realistic. Are old guys this fast in your area?

    PBs since age 60:  5k- 24:36, 10k - 47:17. Half Marathon- 1:42:41.

                                        10 miles (unofficial) 1:16:44.

     


    just a simple cat

      I have noticed that is true in my area for guys. For the women it is vastly different. Not only are there far fewer my age in the race, I can usually manage to place even as slow as I am. (gender reassignment is not an option I assume) Big grin

       

      I  guess as you get more bodacious, you begin to lose more brain cells, because there is a limit to how much magnificence your body can house

      hup


        Hi Simon - Based on the times and places that you are running now, you can count on moving up AG and OA %wise as you improve and run more miles. In my area, the 45-49 group (my AG) is slower than both the 50-54 and 55-59 (I'm speaking of the AG placewinners). It just depends on who shows up. Several years ago I ran in a large 10 mile race that served as a points race for the USATF Pacific Association. I ran a PR by a minute or so. At local races I usually run as you do, top 25-30%, occasionally higher. In the Cal 10 I didn't finish in the top half(!) Pretty humbling stuff Clowning around Smile My advice would be to keep running. Compete and compare with your own times. You'll move up in the field .... more sometimes, less others. Stay healthy. Have fun. hup
          Simon, First of all, good to see another car-guy on the forum....Is that a Triump in your avatar - its hard to tell? - I'm an avid collector and rebuilder of detroit iron.... Shocked In answer to your question, I expect we're all over the place. - A good thing to look is the WAVA age grading - others know more about that, but it somehow measures you against WR holders and accounts for age (I assume that is not the percentiles you list). I don't run enough short races, but it does sound like you have some speedsers in your area. I'm only 47 do OK at half marathon (1:18) - but that's not enough to place in big races like Philly Distance Run. -- In marathon which I concentrate on more, I'm pretty consistently place in my AG or overall masters (which often has a small amount of prize money). - But there's always someone faster - last marathon a 48 year old ran 2:35! I have not found that 50+ runners finish ahead of the 40s guys but then I don't race much and almost always mid-sized half or full marathons. Most important thing is to keep at it and you will improve... I try to set time goals for myself rather than judging only against the competition that shows up.... It would be pretty easy to win a bunch of races if I only ran small marathons or ones with weak fields... Ray
            Simon, At our age, there's always going to be someone faster. Keep repeating that, and concentrate on having a good time, and your PR's. And the post-race libations. I'm in the 40-45 group, and in the 60 mile radius I'll go for races, I've done as well as 2nd OA/ 1st AG ; and at bigger events (two nationally ranked triathletes are in my AG 'round here) I'll finish somewhere with other fit folks, but I won't even check the board to see my placement (takes time away from valuable post-race drinking). In the last two weeks, I've placed 39th OA/ 9th AG in one race (maybe 600 runners there?), and 10th OA/2nd AG in another (out of about 150), both with pretty ho-hum times (somewhere in the 20's for a 5k). Stick to mom-and-pop 5ks if you want to finish well. For big races, it seems like the really fast folks just come out of the woodwork...don't you hate that? Big grin

             I like running alone.

              Thanks for the advice, guys. Yes, Moose, its a 1965 TR4a, which I have owned 11 years and just finished rebuilding after a racing accident. (I used it for Solo1 race track events for 7 years, off and on.) I don't want to compare myself with the WAVA ratings, I have much more modest goals! I suppose the big events do tend to attract the better runners, of all ages, but I found it interesting that men in their late 50's don't seem on average to be any slower than the rest. Simon.

              PBs since age 60:  5k- 24:36, 10k - 47:17. Half Marathon- 1:42:41.

                                                  10 miles (unofficial) 1:16:44.

               


              Back on Stride

                You would think that the higher AGs would tend to fall further back in the overall standings, but I think that this is offset by the number of extra-slow runners in the younger divisions. My observation is that it actually gets a bit tougher when you move to the older AGs, especially at longer distances. At least it has been working against me in the 60-64 bracket. I think that what happens is that, once to get into your late 50s or 60s, there are fewer "first time" or "casual" runners, and the ones who are left are the ones who are really good at it. In my last HM I ran a PR time that I thought would put me pretty high in my AG, but was surprised that I wasn't even in the top 10. I was barely in the upper half in the 60-64 AG even though I was well into the upper third overall, finishing well ahead of a lot of beginners and fun-runners in their 30s and 40s. Another effect is that the boomer-bubble is moving up the AG ladder. I am 61 and at the leading edge of the official boomer generation, and already I see a lot of runners right behind me that are about to swell the numbers in my current AG. Maybe I can steal some AG awards the year I turn 65. Roll eyes

                Doug, Runnin' in Rochester, MI


                Finally!!

                  When I first started running, i figured I'd do pretty well since I was 50 and would be running against guys up to 59. Wrong! Apparently all the slow guys are weeded out by the time you get to that age. I don't have a huge racing experience (only 5K's), but what I usually see is that even when I approach top 1/3 OA, I'm really lucky to make it top 1/2 in AG. There's a bunch of fast guys in this AG! Especially this guy, Pro, who's disappointed when he goes over 19:00 in a 5K Wink

                  Richmond, here I come.................November 15th will be here quicker than I know.

                   


                  just a simple cat

                    Woof! That ProFromDover guy is a real spoiler!

                     

                    I  guess as you get more bodacious, you begin to lose more brain cells, because there is a limit to how much magnificence your body can house


                    Finally!!

                      Guess Roch and I were thinking the same thing at the same time Smile

                      Richmond, here I come.................November 15th will be here quicker than I know.

                       

                        I used to be satsified if I was never outrun by someone pushing a baby carriage or juggling - since I've gotten a bit better at running, my new goal is never to be beaten by any women or guys over 50.... Shocked Ray
                        BTY


                          I'm a 21:XX 5k guy, 42 - 43m 10k guy. I do MUCH better in the OA than in my 40-49 AG. Much, much, much. Undecided Most of the top finishers in local races (Albany NY area) are guys in their mid-to-late 40's. I can usually break into the top 20% in OA, but am happy, lately, with top 50% of AG. bty
                            Ray I know a joggler from another board, a Canadian guy, with a marathon time of 2:53, juggling 3 balls, no drops! No-he's not in my AG! Simon. (PB's? I'll get back to you....)

                            PBs since age 60:  5k- 24:36, 10k - 47:17. Half Marathon- 1:42:41.

                                                                10 miles (unofficial) 1:16:44.

                             

                              I once ran a 17:04 5K only to be beaten by a guy dressed as a pack of cards... The whole placing thing is pretty relative - if there is money for a race, you can be pretty sure that some really fast guys will show up - else, you never know... In 2006 I ran a couple of local 5Ks to see how I would do on marathon training alone - I was suprised to win both of them outright with mid to low 17s. - That same year I ran the USATF XC Masters Championships with a 17:32 and ended up at the back of the pack - there were several guys in the 15s... But I'm pretty sure I can beat jogglers for now.... And I crushed the entire women's field (by a whopping 15 seconds) at Philly... Shocked Ray


                              Back on Stride

                                There's a guy who runs the Crim 10-miler every year while dribbling three basketballs all the way. I used to run just about at his pace and could always hear that thump-thump-thump coming up behind me. The last couple of years I've sped up and he's slowed down a bit, so I haven't seen much of him. BTW for car guys: someone tracked me down and sent me this photo of what was probably my last pass down a dragstrip some 30+ years ago. It brought back some old memories of stuff I thought I'd forgotten. Of course, I was running about a 00:18/mile pace back then. Big grin

                                Doug, Runnin' in Rochester, MI

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