The League of Extraordinary Runners

Race Results (Read 2290 times)

Durrr


    I first must make all League members aware that, at 9 p.m. on race day eve, Joe decided to order Dominos! Did he sensibly get breadsticks? No. Did he exercise even a remote degree of temperance and choose thin crust cheese pizza? Oh no. He scarfed down no less than six slices of DEEP dish MEAT lovers pizza, completely smothering each piece with parmesan cheese beforehand. I was rather appalled at his obscene disregard for proper race diet protocol. His attitude, however, was not one of apathy or indifference --- it was far more one of mockery, as though he sneered at the very notion of eating healthy 12 hours before a race. But all that aside, I was grateful for the leftover slice Joe gave me last night after the bar. On Saturday I actually got to sleep in later than I do on workdays, as the Thanksgiving 5k Race/Prediction Run wasn't until 9 a.m. and Joe and Emily's apartment is merely a 10-minute drive away from Historic St. Mary's City. The air mattress on their living room floor had been exquisite, and I awoke feeling more refreshed than I had all week. But things were still slow to get going since Joe didn't emerge from his lair until nigh 7:50 a.m., and it was past 8:20 by the time we finally pulled into the visitors' center parking lot. The crowd certainly wasn't huge --- probably about the same number that the Three Oaks 5k boasted. I espied Victor P. right away, but soon discerned that local heavy hitters like Travis P. and Paul S. were nowhere to be found, as was the SMCM Cross Country Club (I guess most St. Mary's College students abscond from the premise the weekend before Thanksgiving). After filling out all my registration crap, I pulled two twenty-dollar bills and then promptly put one back; the "donation" fee was only $20 --- fine quality long sleeve T-shirt included! Now that's what I call saving some beer pitcher money. I then hastily went through the motions --- poop, pin on registration number (I multi-task by doing these first two actions at the same time), stretch, warm up. Shortly into me and Joe's warm up, we were joined by Perry, and it felt just like a regular old Tuesday afternoon workout. I warned him about the handicap ramp interlude of the course, but I'm not so sure that my words imparted enough wariness. He would learn, oh yes --- as would every other course newcomer. The sky was silvery gray and the temperature was sitting squarely in the mid-40s, but the windless air was so still that I could almost hear the tense beats of my opponents' hearts as we amassed behind the non-existent start line (cones on either side of the paved path marked the general area). Sporting another sweat wicker, I stood shoulder to shoulder with my nefarious nemesis Vic once again. I'm sure we both realized we had no chance against another fellow standing nearby: Danny B. --- the guy who won the 2006 Step-by-Step 5k with a time in the 16s. And who should also have been standing next to me but Ashley Simms! She said this was only the fourth race she'd ever done. So, finally, after a drawn out speech, the good humored race director woman said, "Do you want me to keep talking or should we start the race? Okay, I'm going to say, 'Ready, set ...' you know what. Ready, set ... go!" That's right, the CBRC has gone from blowing whistles to simply uttering verbal commands. Someone give them a damn gun! Anyways, the race started. As always I went out hard, and I had a lurking suspicion that the stiff feeling in my legs might be a result of the half marathon and the unintentionally grueling speed interval workout I'd done in the previous six days. I'd taken three of those days off, however, so I knew I had no real right to fret. "Pain and Prosper!" is my race motto (using "pain" as a verb). Danny had snatched a significant lead succinctly, but I tied Vic for second place by running abreast with him whilst a high school lad in a yellow shirt kicked at our heels. This formation persisted until the U-turn cone on that windy, shoulder-less back road (upon which automobile traffic was flowing unabated from either direction!). Before the one-mile mark, Vic began pulling ahead of me at an exponential rate. It was quite inspiring, though, to pass all my slower race comrades face to face after making the U-turn. I got looks or words of encouragement from Ashley, Perry, Crystal, Joe, old Mike W. (the Chaptico Classic director), and even Schmidt the schmuck coach (I can't recall whether she was jogging, walking, or something in between. But only one of her pupils was in the race). Both Vic and the yellow-shirted kid had passed me by a good margin, putting me in fourth place. The horde of runners to my rear, however, never got any closer than fifty yards (actually, looking back over the six 5ks I've done this season, I can only think of one or two instances when anyone has passed me past the halfway point of a race. That's when I start passing {or passing back} THEM!). So, as the course left the road and began touring downtown Historic St. Mary's City, I found myself racing in relative solitude. I didn't let that boy in the yellow shirt get out of my sights, though, and as we approached the critical point of the course --- the handicap ramp! --- I sprung into an attack. The zig-zagging ramp required making no less than four extremely sharp turns, and the young novice simply could not negotiate them as well as I. He'd been the third race participant to enter the infernal obstacle, but he was the fourth to exit it. After that silly delay there was another 400 meter stretch during which I once again passed my slower comrades face to face. Unfortunately, Deep Dish Joe was so far back that our paths did not cross at any point before I made the turn off for the final half mile of the race (I should mention, though, that I very narrowly escaped getting passed face to face by Danny B. --- he was already on the ramp when I went by it en route to making my turnaround loop). With Victor(y) completely out of range and the yellow-shirted kid kept well at bay, I had a scarce amount of competitive push for the final 800. And since I was running sans watch, I really had no clue how I was doing on time. So you can imagine the shock --- nay, HORROR --- I felt when, after mildly kicking through the final 200 (roped off all the way by police tape), I saw that the race clock was already ticking into the 19:20s! 19:27 was my time! I can scarcely describe the disappointing sensation. It was like mailing in payment for an overdue traffic fine only to find out a week later that you'd incorrectly filled out the check. Granted I would have been thrilled with that time just two months ago, but after my recent 18:44 it's just unacceptable. And guess who collected my registration stub in the finish chute? Emily! The race volunteers had taken one look at her standing around idly --- waiting to snap photos --- and had promptly pressed her into CBRC service. The yellow-shirted kid finished moments after I did, and he exemplified excellent sportsmanship by shaking my hand and saying, "Thanks for pushing me though, man." Meanwhile, Victor and Danny were also quite distraught over their times and, amidst a frustrated discussion, they insisted that the course had been too long --- likely due to the first U-turn cone having been placed too far down the road. Nearly fuming, Victor seethed, "I can run a 6-minute mile any time, and if I push myself at all I can do under 6, so there's no way my 1-mile split could have been over 6." We were then vindicated by Perry, who finished just under 22. He has a super-sophisticated watch that measures distance as well as time, and upon reaching the finish line the odometer registered 3.23 miles --- virtually 200 meters extra. So I'll infer that my actual 5k time could possibly have been sub-18:50. Ashley finished in the upper-23s, rendering her the second overall female and an easy winner for her age group. Later came Crystal in the high 24s, and then jolly Joe jogged jauntily to the finish somewhere in the 27s. He barely outraced a bent up old man in final 50! Joe then redeemed himself by aggressively assisting Emily with stub tearing in the hectic finish chute. Later on... Awards were first given to those who'd done the Prediction Run. The winner was a woman who'd finished within 10-15 seconds of her predicted time --- 35 minutes! I really think they should just do away with that farce and give more awards to the real racers. Anyways, they started the true awards ceremony on the women's side, and by some bizarre mix up Ashley was awarded a gold medal in the Women 15-19 category --- a group in which "she" was the only one. She accepted it nonetheless, and seemed just as befuddled as the rest of us (then three other girls in their 20s were each awarded, and the one who got bronze didn't really deserve a medal). Then Crystal got gold in the Women 30-39 division! Finishing third overall left me no doubt about securing first place in the Men 20-29 group, and with great pride did I accept yet another gob of gilded gold --- this one hung from a sash of fiery orange. Silver went to some guy who finished in the 25s, and who should have been awarded a bit of brazen bronze adorned on a sash of deepest green but ... Joe! Yes, he may have taken 10 to 12 days off in the past 2 weeks, and he may have had one of the worst pre-race dinners ever, but he will not be coming out of this season empty handed! And I know for certain that there was at least one other guy in our age group, so you can't say Joe got a medal just by finishing. He fought for it! Now it's all about the Jingle Bell.


    Diesel Power

      Maybe I should make a note to run this race next year. Of course, knowing my luck, at that point third in the age group will be under 20. Another good race, DR. Congrats.


      Diesel Power

        To be fair, due to my achilles and calf acting up, I have not run a day since Tuesday. Prior to that, I took Friday, Sunday and Monday off. I've probably have only run twice in the past ten days or so, as well.
        Durrr


          You definitely would have received a silver on Saturday. But then Joe would have been shut out. So I guess there may never be a race where everyone can be a winner. Wait a minute, what am I saying? We're all winners just for participating!
            I sound evil in DR's entries.
            Durrr


              I felt that in the course of my narrative you went from being a villain to a true hero --- like a pro wrestler going from being a heel to a face.


              Diesel Power

                Joe: I thought DR did paint you in a negative light, but that's your battle to fight. What was with the pre-race pizza, though? Do you just not believe in what some might call "proper" pre-race meals?
                Durrr


                  Joe just can't say no to tasty food! The CBRC is taking its sweet time posting race results, and Washington Running Report hasn't posted them yet either. But you all should go to the WRR site and check out the results from the Herndon, VA Trukey Trot which also took place on 11/17. Multiple men well below 16:00 and multiple women well below 18:00, and to place in the M 20-24 age group I would've had to break 16:46!(however, to get fourth place I would merely have had to break 19:28)! Strange that none of those fast devils were at a race as large as the Komen ...


                  Diesel Power

                    They were all at the United Way 5K the previous day (rhyming!), part of the huge Baltimore Running Festival that includes the Baltimore Marathon and Half Marathon. I think the winning time of that 5K is usually around 15:00 or so.
                    Durrr


                      A race on a Friday??
                      Durrr


                        Oh, I'm guessing you meant previous day as in the day before Komen.
                        Durrr


                          What happened at the race??
                          Durrr


                            Ah ha! I've already found the results on Washington Running Report. But I won't steal your race reporting thunder any further. I also finally saw the results from the St. Mary's City race. Ashley Simms didn't run nearly as fast as I for some reason thought she did; she was actually in the upper 23s. And there were nine guys in our age group.


                            Diesel Power

                              As you can see from the results, I finished 68th overall with a time of 22:07, good for 18th in the age group. Very competitive age group... I think breaking 19:00 would have resulted in 8th in the M19-29. The good news is that my achilles tendon feels fine. The other news is that my season is now unofficially over. A tendon (I believe the patella) in my right knee has been tight all week. It was definitely painful while warming up prior to the race. I knew going in that this would likely be my last race of the season, as my knee would likely take at least a couple of weeks to heal fully. However, I would never had run this race if I'd known what the course would be like. One of the things that can exacerbate runner's knee is too much hill work. The first mile of the course was mainly downhill (gradual or steep)... the second mile, in turn, was mostly uphill. The third mile was about average, but felt much more arduous after the second mile. This was, hands down, the hardest course I've run in quite some time, and my knee was burning intensely throughout most of it. I didn't even have any energy left to kick at the end of the race. Regardless, all things considered, I think my performance was a worthy way to end the season. My watch is also officially cooked. Previously, the only problem was that hitting the STOP button would freeze the split time, but the official time would keep running. However, when I hit the SPLIT button after the first mile, my split time was stuck on 6:19 for the duration of the race. The only way the watch could be more worthless is if it outright broke altogether. Please note that I said my season is "unofficially" over. This means that I plan to take the next two weeks off for RICE, regardless of how I feel at any given point. I still plan on coming down for Jingle Bell with Val, if and only if she'd like to run the race. I am also going to try to run two miles the day before Jingle Bell. If that goes well, then I'll run the race with Val in an effort to set a solid pace for her.
                              Durrr


                                The best of RICE'n to you! But I would think that any course in Towson could potentially pack some hefty hills. Looking at Joe and Valerie's most recent 5k times makes me think that the race could be quite close between them at Jingle Bell. That means you might be running abreast with both of them! Joe: you've got some work to do --- two races need to get resulted on the website. Surely you don't need any encouragement to officially commemorate your brazen bronze win!