Saturday, June 25, 2022

2022 Taylorsvile Dayzz 5K Race Recap - Taylorsville, UT







Official Time: 25:10
Placement: 28th overall, 1st in 50 - 59 age group
Results: Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: mid 60's, no wind
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: [2021] [2019]


Mile TimeComments
18:07Nice start.  Felt a bit fast though but going with it.
28:16Not an easy mile. I am actually shocked at the pace here. Better than expected
38:14Running through the neighborhood and the final stretch had me motivated to stay strong
3.080:33
Total Miles: 3.08 - 25:11





Introduction

Another weekend, another 5K.  I've done the Taylorsville Dayzz 5K now three times.  It is a fun, local race just a few short miles from my house.  It coincides with their city's summer celebration.

The 5K was going to be my "A" race for the early summer.  The course is flat and fast and offers some pretty good competition.  They also offer cash prizes and you must win your age group (with a 10 year age increment).  So each summer I make a mental note to really crush this race.  It sets a bit of a barometer for me on how my training and fitness is going.

But since I've been injured and my training has been fairly minimal, I knew my time wasn't going to be worthy of an "A" race.  In fact, this race was "let's get it done and hope I can win my age group".  My back was definitely not happy at the start of the race and more than likely I probably should've sat this week's race out.






The Race


I rolled into the race around 6:20 AM for the 7 AM start.  Packet pickup was a snap and it was a beautiful morning.  It was warm but not insanely hot just yet. Also there wasn't any wind to speak of.  I did a fairly brief shakeout run and some drills.  It also gave me an opportunity to take some course photos.  My back was definitely iffy and I focused more on drills to loosen things up rather than easy running.  I had a big question mark on my ability to finish this race without my back going into spasm mode.

The race started promptly after 7 AM and the plan was to go out strong but be willing to dial it back if my back started to grow more painful.

I wish I had had another 5 - 10 minutes to get the heart rate going before the race but I started off along the walking path surrounding the city's park.  I had eyeballed the competition before the race and didn't see anyone in the front section that appeared to be my age, but I wasn't taking any chances.

I was familiar with the course, having run it now for the 3rd time.  The initial quarter mile was crowded but the race thinned out and in no time at all I had settled into a pace.

I had no idea what I was running -- in fact I didn't look at my watch the first mile until I felt like I was getting close to the one mile marker.  I didn't want to get hung up on my pace -- I was simply going by feel and pushing hard, but not all out.

About the first mile area

The first mile came up at 8:07.  Way better than last week's race and right on target. I felt fast, but this was a 5K.  Hit it hard.

My back was griping a little but it was holding up.  I had taken some NSAIDs and rubbed some Voltaren on it and it seemed to be working.

We finally exited the park and I got hung up on a few small hills.  They just seemed to take a bit of my steam away.  They definitely weren't big but I had to dial it back on them on account my back doesn't want to tolerate any hills (which I had figured out on a training run a few weeks ago).



Close to the last quarter mile.

There is a long stretch of road along the park's edge we travel along.  It is probably my favorite part of the course.  Fancy houses on the left and woods / creek and the park on the right.  I could see some of my friends in the park  I was hurting at this point and figured the last 1.5 miles would be a painful grind.





I recovered a bit and pressed forward.  I was actually doing well and I hit mile 2 at 8:15 or so.  I had expected an 8:30 at the minimum.  

There wasn't anyone behind me but I was working on catching a few of the runners ahead of me -- none of whom were in my age group.  It kept me motivated but for the most part it was lonely running.  There were some course marshals that cheered me on as I ran through a subdivision and finally back into the park.  It was nice to receive some cheers as I surged ahead.

The final half mile seems to last an eternity.  You enter the park and you can see the finish line off to your left but you still have to make a wide arc around the right hand side of the park, You do get to run by some of the exhibitor tents but the finish line can't come soon enough.

I had found another gear.  It wasn't like last week's race where I was simply out of gas, but I was still pushing hard and holding a solid pace.

Post race finish photo with some of my friends.

I rounded the final corner and glanced at my watch. Less than a tenth of a mile.  I pushed hard and tried to catch a young man in front of me, but he wouldn't let me pass him.  I didn't want to pull anything and no one was behind me, so I coasted through the finish line.

Conclusion


I crossed the finish line -- with my back intact - in 25:10.  I was really happy with that, especially considering last week's painful 5K (about a 26:31).  I had hit my goal - significant improvement.



I hadn't seen anyone in my age group ahead of me -- as the race is attended by a lot of high school runners.  And sure enough, I had placed first in the 50 - 59, netting me $25.

I actually felt strong at the end and all things considered this was a great race, despite my time being about a minute slower than where I was 2 months ago.  So my fitness does appear to be coming back.




The race itself was well organized.  Easy parking, started on time, and well marked (despite a lot of turns on the course).  Post race refreshments included water and bananas.  I had missed the deadline for a t-shirt, unfortunately but I did get a nice swag bag.  Note to self: register early.

It was great seeing my friends from various races and I felt really happy I had made marked improvement.  I was pretty much all smiles on the way home.


Upcoming Races


07/02: 2022 Riverton Country Mile 10K - Riverton, UT (Confirmed)
08/20: 2022 Provo Canyon to Pleasant Grove 10K - Lindon, UT (Confirmed)
10/01: 2022 Witch Run 10K - West Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
10/22: 2022 Haunted Emigration Canyon 5K - Salt Lake City (Confirmed)
10/29: 2022 Haunted Half Provo 5K - Provo, UT (Confirmed)
01/14: 2023 St George Half Marathon - St George, UT (Confirmed)
02/26: 2023 Las Vegas Half Marathon - Las Vegas, NV (Confirmed)
04/22: 2023 Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)
08/19: 2023 Rock 'N Roll Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)


Saturday, June 18, 2022

West Fest 5K Race Recap - West Valley City, UT






Official Time: 27:55
Placement: 1st in the 50-55 8th male
Results:  Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: 81 degrees, 9 mph winds from the south
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: First Year For Me



Mile TimeComments
18:14Faster than expected.
28:31This is the pace I was targeting.
38:55I was hurting here and sort of lost interest in pushing the pace
3.282:15Holding it steady towards the finish
Total Miles: 3.28 - 27:55 (26:30 for 5K)





Introduction


So I've been out of action for a while.  I haven't raced since Easter due to injury and illness -- which more or less have taken me out of my running routine for the better part of 2 months.

I was scheduled to do one of my favorite races this weekend -- the Lamoille Canyon Half Marathon.  But I am in no condition to do a half marathon -- even a fast downhill one.  I had toyed with making the 3.5 hour drive for the 5K but opted to just sit it out.

I was itching to do a race - just a local, low budget 5K and found one -- the West Fest 5K / 10K.  It was only $25, about 15 minutes drive and was tied in with the city of West Valley City's local Summerfest / carnival celebration.  

So I plunked down my money and showed up early Saturday morning for the race.





The Race


I showed up at the local elementary school an hour before the race site.  I've only dabbled a tiny bit in West Valley City so this was all new area for me.  Easy parking and I was able to get my bib in short order.  Instead of a shirt, I got a hat (I love shirts but I am okay with getting something).


I wound up using the bathrooms a time or two, did a short warm-up.  With my injury and lingering post illness issues, I kept my warm-up short.  It was already warm.

I watched the 10K runners take off -- they had started at 7:10 AM.  I was wishing I had done that race as the course looked very interesting.  My race started at 7:30 AM and it started exactly on the dot.


I didn't have many goals on this race other than to finish.  Like I said, I've gotten very little running in over the past 60 days and I knew my time was going to reflect that.  My training indicated that I'd likely be able to hold an 8:30ish pace, which I'd be happy with.



The race started at the elementary school and took off west for a short while before making a turn into a corporate center, bike trail, and residential area.  I settled into a comfortable pace.  I didn't really look much at my watch -- just going out easy but fast enough to be respectable.

Quite a few people sped ahead of me but I was content to just run my own race.  I honestly didn't know how much speed endurance I actually had.

The course was pancake flat and I hit the first mile in 8:15.  Off to a good start but I suspect I wasn't going to be able to hold that. My lungs haven't cleared since my illness a few weeks ago and the few tempo runs I had done indicated I probably wouldn't be able to hold it.

I slowly reeled in the faster starters.  It was warm and many of them were slowing down on account of it.  I took was slowing down and I hit the mile 2 spot at about 8:30, which was my goal pace.  But could I hang on?

The race had thinned out at this point.  The course was well marshalled with aid stations and spray chalk on where to turn.  However, there was a stretch where we were running east for the better part of half a mile and there were no turns but the spray chalk was all sprayed in the other direction (presumably for the 10K).  It was disconcerting and part of me wondered if I had been misdirected.

I was working with one young man (probably junior high school).  I looked behind me -- and the few people I had passed recently were no where to be seen.

I looked down at my watch and I was approaching the 2.5 mile mark and the finish line wasn't anywhere that I could see.  

At that point, I think I mentally gave up a bit.  I could see myself running a 5 mile race and finishing last.

I had studied the course beforehand and I finally saw the busy street I knew we had to make a right on before making the final right turn to the finish line.  I wasn't lost at all.

I kept looking down at my watch and looking for the finish line.  It should be coming up soon.  I was hurting at this point pretty badly.  No one was behind me and I had finally passed the junior high student I had been working with, so I was running for pride.

Finally I spotted the school as my watch beeped 3 miles.  The course was going to be significantly longer than a 5K.  I hit the 5K mark (on my watch) at about 26:30 -- about where I expected I'd be and cruised into the finish line, at 3.28 miles in 27:55.
 

Conclusion


Overall I finished pretty well -- 8th place for the men and about 12th overall.  It was a small race with about 20 10K runners and 85 5K runners.  A total confidence booster for me.

I managed to snag first in my age group.  The prize for that was a simple ribbon.  There were no finisher's medals for this race but every participant got a mug (apparently an age group award from previous years) as well as some running stuff.  I wound up winning a reflective vest with flashlight.  Actually kind of useful being that I'll be running more at dawn during the upcoming summer months.

Post race refreshments were fruit, Chik-Filet Sandwiches and water.  Pretty simple but I didn't expect much for my entry fee.

So performance-wise I did about what I expected.  A dream goal -- and unrealistic -- was to come in under 25 minutes.  2 months ago this would've been easy.  But with a lack of training and still not 100% recovered from my illness, I expected to come in well behind expectations.

This does give me a bit of a baseline to work off of as I work to regain my fitness.  Which was about 90% of the race (also to get out of the house and see fellow runners I haven't seen in a while).

Overall I was pleased with my experience.  It was well organized and the course markings were good. I just wish it had been closer to a legitimate 5K.  It will definitely be well off from my normal efforts.


  

Upcoming Races



06/25: 2021 Taylorsvillle Dayzz 5K - Taylorsville, UT (Confirmed)
07/02: 2022 Riverton Country Mile 10K - Riverton, UT (Confirmed)
08/20: 2022 Provo Canyon to Pleasant Grove 10K - Lindon, UT (Confirmed)
10/01: 2022 Witch Run 10K - West Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
10/22: 2022 Haunted Emigration Canyon 5K - Salt Lake City (Confirmed)
10/29: 2022 Haunted Half Provo 5K - Provo, UT (Confirmed)
01/14: 2023 St George Half Marathon - St George, UT (Confirmed)
02/26: 2023 Las Vegas Half Marathon - Las Vegas, NV (Confirmed)
04/22: 2023 Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)
08/19: 2023 Rock 'N Roll Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)



Saturday, April 16, 2022

Eggs Legs 5K Race Recap - West Jordan, UT





Official Time: 24:21
Placement: 1st in the 50-55 6th overall
Results:  Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: Low 40's, slight wind from the south
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: [2021]



Mile TimeComments
17:47Wow. Didn't expect this pace
27:46Still solid pacing -- still had it!
38:03Calf string hit me at about 2.5 miles. Hobbled the last .5 of a mile
3.100:39How much did I trust my calf muscle?
Total Miles: 3.10 - 24:16




Introduction


So I signed up for the Eggs Legs 10K race back in the winter months.  OnHillEvents, the organizer, always has a sale around Black Friday or Christmas.  I wound up scoring this race for about $30.

I've been dealing with some back issues for well over a month now.  Sometimes I can run -- but always with stiffness and ultimately pain, or sometimes I last about 10 steps.  So doing, let alone racing a 10K, was kind of out of the question.

The race organizer, when I arrived to get my bib on Thursday, kindly allowed me to switch to the 5K. At least if my back didn't hold out, I could get through a 3 mile walk with friends.

So I prepped up the night before the race.  I wound up taking a muscle relaxer (which kind of made me loopy) and then an Aleve the morning of.  I hate relying upon pain relievers and NSAIDs, but this definitely did the trick.  I had zero problems with my back on this race.

Either way, I arrived with the intention that this race was likely going to be a "fun" run or at least a walk at the worst.



The Race


So I rolled into the race just shy of 8:15 for the 9 AM start.  I wound up chatting with plenty of people and getting in about a mile warm-up.  Again, I had zero problems with my back / hip but that didn't mean I was in the clear.

My goal was to go at about 10K pace for the first mile and then if my back gave me the all clear, rachet up the speed a bit.

Around 9 AM, 250 5K runners lined up at the Gardner Village shopping center and bolted out of the starting line.  There was a 10K and half marathon which had started 1 and 2 hours before our race, so while we were heading out, racers were coming in -- it wasn't as bad as it sounds -- the other racers were pretty thinned out and they weren't as highly attended.

I started off strong, racing in my Saucony Fastwitches.  It was cool out so I wore shorts and a short-sleeved shirt.  I had pocketed my thin gloves.

The race starts off at the eclectic shopping center before heading south on the Jordan River Bike Trail.  This is my "home" course, being that I run it quite a bit.  So I knew every crack in the sidewalk, turn and bridge we had to cross. 

This race is also popular with newer runners, so lots of kids and casual runners.  So I wasn't too surprised to be in the front of the pack.  I was all about surviving this race, taking inventory on my back every minute -- wondering how much borrowed time I had.




During the first mile -- as usual - I felt in control. A nice solid pace and it didn't seem to crazy.  I had done a speed workout earlier in the week and I had to cut it short due to back issues.  But as the first mile went on -- my back and hip were quiet.

I was shocked -- no stunned -- to see a 7:47 come up on my watch for the first mile.  And I was running into a very mild headwind.  I thought I was supposed to go at 8:15 pace?

Mile 2 is usually where things get difficult. I was running into returning half marathoners and 10K runners but there really wasn't much competition.  The nearest person ahead of me was barely within shouting distance and I didn't dare look to see who was coming on my back.




Exactly at 1.55 miles, I reached the turn around.  Finally, a full length 5K!  And best of all, I had a nice tailwind to work with and my body was holding up.

I got a sense of who was behind me on this out and back course and from what I could tell, my competition was still in the hunt.  I figured I had a lock on something in my age group (you just never know) but I was running well -- could this be my "day?"

I finally got to the first bridge to cross the Jordan River and I felt something in my calf just tighten up.  Each step it got a little worse.  Last weekend during a training run, I got a very mild calf strain.  For intents and purposes I thought I was over it.

Each step it got tighter and tighter and by the time I crossed the bridge to the final half mile stretch it was hurting.

I glanced behind me, fearing an angry mob of 50+ year old runners chasing me down  I had just blasted a 7:46 mile and if I could knock out the final one at that pace, I'd have a sub 24 minute 5K.  However, no one was behind me.  




I was still running into trailing 5K runners on their outbound and they cheered me on.  It really helped.  But I was definitely running with an odd gait and every step I took with my right leg, hurt.

My paced dropped dramatically.  I had whatever place I was in line for pretty much locked up, but I still was hoping to go sub 24 minutes.




The last quarter mile or so of this race is quite a few turns.  There is also a bit of a hill as you leave the bike trail and into the shopping area.  It isn't bad, but it always slows me down.  Also the finish line is still a solid .1 of a mile after entering the parking lot.

My calf had calmed down a bit but it still smart. I definitely had enough though to crush it to the finish line.

I had finished -- everything had held up! 


 

Conclusion


So my time wasn't the fastest ever - but this was a moral victory.  I think if I had had a choice, I would've sat this race out, out of fear of my back giving me issues.  But I was all in after the first mile so long as my body would hold up.

This pancake flat course today was good to me.  I ran really well all things considered.  I just wish my calf hadn't blown up on me.  I have a feeling I could've taken off a bit more time.





I did wind up winning my age division.  There were quite a few friends of mine at the finish line, so it was social hour.

Post race snacks were cheese sticks, drink, oranges and granola bars.  I was looking for the ice cream sandwiches, but I didn't see any.  

Overall, it was a great morning for racing.  My time was for the most part, pedestrian, but anytime I can knock out the first 2 miles in under 8 minutes I am pleased.  I would definitely like a gimme on the final mile -- I think I could've done quite a bit better.

  

Upcoming Races



06/18: 2022 Lamoille Canyon Half Marathon - Lamoille, NV (Confirmed)
07/02: 2022 Riverton Country Mile 10K - Riverton, UT (Confirmed)
08/20: 2022 Provo Canyon to Pleasant Grove 10K - Lindon, UT (Confirmed)
10/01: 2022 Witch Run 10K - West Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
10/22: 2022 Haunted Emigration Canyon 5K - Salt Lake City (Confirmed)
10/29: 2022 Haunted Half Provo 5K - Provo, UT (Confirmed)
01/14: 2023 St George Half Marathon - St George, UT (Confirmed)
02/26: 2023 Las Vegas Half Marathon - Las Vegas, NV (Confirmed)
04/22: 2023 Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)
08/19: 2023 Rock 'N Roll Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)

Thursday, March 31, 2022

2022 Riverton Fit for Life 5K Race Recap - Riverton, UT







Official Time: 24:45
Placement: 2nd in age group 25th overall
Results: Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: Low 60's, 12 mph winds from the south west
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: [2021] [2018] [2015] [2014]

Mile TimeComments
17:32Off to a very fast start. Aided by a hill.
27:53Some head wind on the way back
38:44Had to climb about .20 of a mile -- 80 feet climb
3.090:35Crush it to the finish.
Total Miles: 3.09 - 24:45




Introduction


One of the spring races that fall on my racing calendar is the Riverton Fit for Life Half Marathon and 5K.  It comes at just about a perfect time as far as the weather goes. However, the weather can be a wildcard.  It is usually windy -- as most Marches are in Utah and it can also snow or rain.

So signing up for this race when it is cheapest is definitely a gamble.  I usually pull the trigger sometime in January, getting a fully supported half marathon for around $40.

You may be wondering -- "hey Eddie, the title says 5K but you signed up for the half marathon. What's up?"

Well, every since the Winter Striders 10K, I've been dealing with some hip, lower back, hamstring problems.  Since the time I've injured it, I haven't really gone beyond 6 miles and downhill running seems to bother it immensely.  Also, I haven't run over 8 miles since Las Vegas. 

So my confidence in getting 13.1 miles done without have to resort to a walk was nearly nil.  Doing a 5K -- I could get through. Even if I had to walk.  So when I arrived at the race, I was able to quickly change from the half marathon to the 5K.  My ego took a hit, but I think my body thanked me.



The Race

I arrived at the race site and was quickly able to get my bib, shirt and was ready to race.  I took a test of the weather: it was breezy and warm.  I was suddenly glad I wasn't running the half marathon.  A good portion of the course is southward and fairly exposed, so I know I would've hit a lot of headwind in the middle miles.




I did a brief one mile warm-up and it quickly became apparent that I didn't feel bad at all. In fact, I felt really good.  What sore hip, hamstring and back?  Maybe I could've done the half marathon after all.



It's easier to spot myself in race photos with this shirt.



My race started promptly at 9:15 and I had told myself that I'd go out at about 10K pace and see what I had after that. Was I racing? I told myself no, but you know how that goes: once a racer, always a racer. 

Those plans were dashed pretty quickly as I blasted through the park, jockeying for a decent position as we headed towards a road that would take us to the bike trail.

The 5K is primary run through a residential area, past a golf course, and then dumping you onto the Jordan River bike trail.  The first 1.55 miles of it follows the half marathon course and I remembered many parts of it from the times I've run that edition.




The first mile is along residential streets along the golf course.  Just at about the mile position we head down a steep hill -- just shy of a quarter mile in length.  It is a paved switchback and here I was able to let gravity pull me down towards the Jordan River Bike Trail.  I had to hold back a little because of my back, but it seemed to be happy this morning.

By the time I hit the flats, I was still feeling fast.  I had run a solid 7:30 mile and now I had the wind at my back.  I felt like I was running really strong -- how could I not after having executed a fast mile and with a 10 mile per hour breeze at my back.

I wasn't terribly familiar with the 5K course but I recalled most of it from the times I've run the half marathon.  As we came to the first aid station, I glanced at my Garmin and saw that I was half way done with the race.

Over-striding for the win!



I saw the runner ahead of me touch (or come close to the aid station) and turn around.  I got the impression that we were supposed to run a loop around the aid station but I saw exactly no one doing it.  Turns out, we *were* supposed to run a loop around the aid station.  I (and most others) probably shortcut the course by a good 10 - 15 seconds as a result.

Turning around resulted in wind blowing into me, which dampened my spirits.  I tried to find someone to tuck in behind, but I was running solo for the most part.  Also the thought of climbing the hill back to the start had me worried. 

My next mile -- as a result -- was just shy of 8 minutes.  Still respectable, but without the tailwind and the massive downhill, my pace was right where it should be.  Could I manage a fast final mile?

I had measured the distance on the downhill and it was just shy of a quarter mile.  I recalled how many times I had done hill repeats up hills and if I dug deep, I could get up it and then hammer it home.  

The hill eventually came and I got over it.  It was slow going at first and once I got over the steepest part, I wound up overtaking those that had charged ahead of me.  I focused on my form and just getting over it without wasting a lot of energy and when it became less steep, I got my turnover going and pushed a little harder.




By the time I hit the top I hit my next gear and took off.  There weren't many runners behind me now and there weren't too many to try and pass but I bore down, calculating if I could still have a decent race.  I dropped a young woman who was working with me up the hill and it felt good as I got cheers and greetings from runners still heading out on the race.

I knew the rest of the way back to the finish line and the wind was no longer in my face.  Best of all, the remainder of the course was primarily flat.

I had lost a lot of time on the hill and facing a bit of a headwind in the initial part of mile 2 through 3, but I made up a lot of ground on it in the last half mile.  The final quarter mile was a bit tougher, as I had to run through the park's grass.

It was painful, but I got it done.  In the past, I might have given up on myself, but the times I've done quarter mile repeats and strides when I was hurting finally paid off.  I gave it max effort as I sprinted the last hundred yards.




Conclusion


I wound up crossing the finish line in a relatively disappointing 24:45.  It is hard to compare this race to others that I have done -- it was the first time I've run this course.

Despite my pedestrian time (for me) I felt like I had run pretty well.  I ran the flat / downhill parts strong, and did the best I could with the uphill part.  Best of all, my back and hip felt good throughout the race.  This won't go down as one of the best runs of 2022 for me, but I'll take it as a moral victory.

I came in 2nd place in my age division (the 50 - 54 for the half marathon was stacked with talent year).  Unfortunately, awards were only given to first overall.  I was a little miffed about the course confusion at the turn around -- also I was told that the top 3 males all ran a good portion of the half marathon and as a result never placed.




I paid about $40 for the race -- expensive for a 5K -- but a bargain for a half marathon.  I was incredibly sad not to be able to run the half, but my back, hips and my endurance weren't to be trusted that morning.  I still got a nice shirt, a timed race, a well organized race, and a ton of post race snacks at the end.  Plus a pretty nice finisher's medal.  Plus I had a ton of friends there to socialized with.  With the beautiful weather, it was just a great morning for comradery and running.

They also had plenty of free photos to borrow as well.

I am glad I didn't follow my ego on this race and force myself through a half marathon.  I have a feeling I wouldn't have lasted more than 6 to 8 miles.  I was able to make the most of the race, succeed at it and not pay too much of a price physically on it.




Overall, I was really happy with my experience from start to finish.  I plan on being here next year -- once again to try the half marathon.



Upcoming Races


04/16: 2022 Eggs Legs 10K - West Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
04/23: 2022 Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)
05/01: 2022 Reno Half Marathon - Reno, NV (Confirmed)
06/18: 2022 Lamoille Canyon Half Marathon - Lamoille, NV (Confirmed)
07/02: 2022 Riverton Country Mile 10K - Riverton, UT (Confirmed)
08/20: 2022 Provo Canyon to Pleasant Grove 10K - Lindon, UT (Confirmed)
10/01: 2022 Witch Run 10K - West Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
10/22: 2022 Haunted Emigration Canyon 5K - Salt Lake City (Confirmed)
10/29: 2022 Haunted Half Provo 5K - Provo, UT (Confirmed)
02/26: 2023 Las Vegas Half Marathon - Las Vegas, NV (Confirmed)



Tuesday, March 22, 2022

2022 Lucky 13 10K Race Recap - West Jordan, UT






Official Time: 48:43
Placement: 1st in the 50-55 15th overall
Results:  Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: 45F, 15mph winds from the south
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: [2021] [2019[2018] [2014]



Mile TimeComments
18:12Hemmed in a bit but tucked in and biding my time with the headwind
28:12
38:11Consistency
47:59Got some nice tailwind here. Can I take advantage of it?
58:13Quarter mile here of into the wind. Sort of sucked the life out of me.
67:58Crushing it to the finish
Total Miles: 6.00 - 48:46







Introduction


During the Black Friday sales around Thanksgiving time, I wound up signing up for the Lucky 13 race - a St Patrick's Day themed race (of sorts).  I've done it pretty much every year since it's inception (It took a break it would seem after the inaugural 2014 race).   It is a local race that is held at a local shopping area in West Jordan -- just a few miles down the road from where I live.  

The course itself is held on the Jordan River Bike Trail and I'll be honest, I've run along the trail more times than I can count.  It is actually my training ground.  It seems weird to pay for a race that I can run on at any time but as someone who loves to race, it is like competing on my "home" court.  On the plus side, as well, there is no course anxiety -- I know it and where it goes.




The Race


I wound up getting my bib the day before the race. The packet pickup was at the Gardner Village shopping center. Running there was a bit of a shakeout run -- 1.5 miles each way.  It helped me avoid the lines and any stress about getting my bib / shirt.

I showed up about 45 minutes before the race, parked and went to the race start.  Normally, the race starts and finishes at a common area in the mall.  But the city is doing sewer work and the walkway from the center to the bike trail was blocked off.

The race started at a clearing about .15 miles from the normal start of the race.  It was windy and chilly but temperature-wise -- great running weather.  Also, unlike last year, the air was dry and not a downpour.  I missed the clean bathroom that the shopping center provided, and I am also happy the air and ground were dry.  It could've been a quagmire.

There were 3 races: 5K, 10K, and half marathon.  The half started at 9 AM and each other race started 15 minutes later.  My 10K started at 9:15 and I was off and running after a very brief warm-up.

I half figured that today wasn't going to be a personal record day.  It was too windy, but I could make a good effort and see what sort of time I could turn in.  My goal was to go out at a dedicated 10K pace (low 8's) and then give it all I had on the way back with the tailwind.

The wind, while strong, wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be.  However, I was running with a fellow who was a bit bigger than me and running a little faster.  I wound up tailing him for a the first mile or 2 -- using him as a shield.  The strategy seemed to work -- holding onto a 8:12 pace for the first two miles.  I couldn't ask for a better time as far as what I wanted to accomplish.

The course is run along the Jordan River Parkway and is a paved, multi-use bike trail.  You are surrounded by scrub, shrubs and of course the north-flowing Jordan River.  It isn't the most scenic course, but it does have its charm -- and it is as flat as it can be.

However, all good things must end and eventually the runner started to pull ahead.  I was really hurting as I approached mile 3.  The wind had taken a lot out of me and the pace was now getting harder.  I couldn't wait to turn around.

The turn around was at the 2nd age station.  I was a little dismayed that it was at 3.03 miles.  I think if the course had been run from the shopping center, it would've been close to a legit 3.10 miles.

As soon as I turned around, the wind stopped and I felt a sense of renewed energy. Finally! 

It was empowering to get some cheers and greets from the 10K runners behind me.  I didn't see anyone in my age group (from my best guesses) anywhere close to me.  But still, I've been wrong about age before and while the last few miles I didn't see another person behind me, I still wanted to try and catch the runner ahead of me.




I did hit a stretch of head wind around mile 4.25.  It seemed like the longest half mile as I ran west near the Sandy City Golf Course.  The wind had been blowing form the south and also evidently from the west.  There was absolutely no way to take shelter.  Hence my mile 4 to 5 time is a bit of a dip.

I knew I was getting close to the finish when I got to the 5K turn around.  I was working on navigating my way through the multitude of 5K runners.  It was also encouraging to speed past the 5K participants.  As a racer, I really do enjoy feeling like an "elite" athlete -- although I am anything but of course.

The final mile I was pushing hard.  While I knew the course was short and no one was behind me, I knew I could calculate what a "real" 6.2 mile race would equate to.  I was loving the tailwind and I was still feeling strong, despite some occasional moments when I thought my heart would jump out of my chest.

Finally I jumped over the final bridge and hauled it to the finish line.  It was a bit disheartening to see that the finishing arch had come down  -- presumably from the wind but I crossed in 48:43 for 6 miles.

Looking a little windblown.



Conclusion


It is never really satisfying not to know your time for an official course.  But running calculators estimate my finishing time of 50:30-ish.  You just never know what final push I could muster up to shave a few more seconds off of it.  This is definitely a sold performance -- despite the difficult circumstances.

Either way, I finished first in my age group and 15th overall.  And to be honest, I felt fantastic when I finished.  Sure I was tired, but I still felt like I had run a nice race -- my splits were the most consistent they've been in a long time.




Post race refreshments included drink and ice cream sandwiches and fruit.  It was chilly but I managed to get 2 100 calorie ice creams down.  My car was parked a bit away, but I trekked over to it and grabbed warmer clothes and my phone.  By the time I got back, awards were being doled out.  

I really like the finisher / awards medals.  They are heavy and well designed. I love t-shirts, but I like the 100% polyester ones.  This was a blended one.  It will go into my St Patrick's themed race shirts collection (I have a ton of them).

Overall, I was happy with my experience.  $30 for a supported / timed 10K race isn't a bad deal.  It was also fun and I got to see a bunch of local running friends.  I'll likely run this race again next year.