Monday, August 19, 2019

2019 Provo Canyon To Pleasant Grove 10K Race Recap - Lindon, UT




Official Time: 51:10
Placement: 1st overall male, out of 30 racers
Results: Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: Mid 60's 5 - 8 mph wind from the south
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: First Year


Mile TimeComments
18:37A fair amount of hills here.
28:36Finally some flats and on my way on the bike trail
38:48Running out of gas here. Felt like this was climbing but actually mild downhill
48:36Step on the accelerator a bit.
58:48Some flats here and on final hill to push up
68.21All downhill
6.070.30Push it to the finish
Total Miles: 6:07 - 52:19




Introduction


There were a ton of races this past Saturday and I was looking to pick one.  Most of the races were fairly big half marathons that were a bit spendy as well as a bit of a drive.  I don't feel like I am ready to run a half marathon quite yet - at least competitively -- so I found another race -- the inaugural PC2PG race.  

Put on by OnHillEvents.Com, I decided to give this race a shot.  They had a variety of distances, from the 5K to the half -- along with a 10K.  

The race was located in Lindon, UT about 25 minute drive from my house.  The race's headquarters were at a junior high that backed up to the Murdock Canal Trail that hugs the eastern mountain range in Utah County.

I had never been on this paved trail before and was always curious as to what it was like.  So it was pretty easy to decide that I was going to do this race.


The Race


I rolled into the race about an hour before race time.  Hardly anyone was there.  Sadly, with so many races going on that morning, this one was lightly attended.  Also, the majority of the racers were doing the half marathon, which had started an hour before I got there.

So picking up my bib and shirt was easy peasy.  I did some basic drills, socialized and cycled through the bathroom a time or two before the race's 8:15 AM start.

It was a little warm and occasionally a few drops of rain fell.  I knew that the rain was going to be short-lived though.  There just weren't enough clouds to warrant a full on storm.

The race started promptly at 8:15. 

With most races that I haven't done before, I am always worried about course markings.  You just never know when a volunteer is going to send you down the wrong path but this race was about as simple as it could be.

Just run down a residential street for about a third of a mile, hook a right on the trail and keep going until the second water stop.  About a 100 yards after the 2nd water stop, turn around.  Truthfully, the race was as simple as that.

The first half mile was uphill and I hadn't really warmed up, so I slow got into the groove as other runners passed me.  I was running with the 5K runners as well and I kind of knew who was running what.  I let the people I know who were faster get in front of me and I got acquainted to running.  I really wasn't sure what I had...

I liked the bike trail.  It was plenty wide and there were other runners and many cyclists and dog walkers on it.  I just stayed to the right and I was fine.  I felt like I was running pretty well and was actually mildly surprised to see an 8:30 flash on my watch for the first mile -- despite the hills.

The sun was out and I was working on a good sweat.  Mile 2 passed by with an almost identical split from the first -- at least I was consistent.



It was at this point that the 5K runners turned around.  I suspected I was in 2nd place, maybe 3rd -- at least for the men.  I was tailing the second place woman, who I knew was faster than me, so I was right where I wanted to be.  I looked behind me and a few guys were behind me but it was too early in the race to truly worry about them.

Not sure what happened in the third mile, but I suspect I was feeling fatigued and my confidence was lagging.  I had wondered if I had started out too fast and to be honest, I was hitting some headwind which made holding the tempo pace that much harder.

The second water stop was as advertised and I hung a right, ran another 50 yards or so and then turned around at the sign.  Running back on an out and back course is kind of nice because I could suss out my competition.  The two guys that were behind me were about a minute or 90 seconds behind me, so I couldn't let up.  I couldn't tell how many other 10K runners had already turned around because the half marathoners were coming back from their point-to-point race.  I still figured I was in 3rd place -- potentially 2nd.

Heading back was nice.  I knew where I had to go and I knew how much further I had to run.  I was passing some of the slower half marathoners, which buoyed my confidence.  Granted, they were at mile 11 while I was at 4 or 5.

The course was actually quite stunning and I took time to appreciate.  The bike trail was clean, safe and while I did have to cross a few roads, their were crossing guards or virtually no traffic to worry about.  I'd definitely like to explore this trail more in the future.



I kept looking back --- searching for the guys tailing me and I couldn't see them.  Had I put that much ground on them?  I worked on passing the second place woman and really pushed it during the last 2 miles.  Occasionally there were 5K walkers but for the race was sparsely populated.

Once I turned the corner to head back to the school I looked behind me and I could not see my pursuers.  Just in case though, I really let loose and flew the last quarter mile.  It was nice to be off the trail and back on street and having a nice downhill.

As I crossed the finish line, I heard, Joe, the race director, announce that I was the first place winner of the 10K.... what?!?!!?!



Conclusion


First off, my speed work isn't suddenly paying off and nor did I set a personal best.  It was the luck of the draw that only a few people ran the 10K.  It was nice to "win" but let's face it, the victory is sort of hollow.

I snagged a nice plaque -- OnHillEvents always has nice plaques to the overall winners and I got a heavy-duty finisher's medal.  I really like the lanyard on it.

The course came up a little short for me.  It was fairly straight and narrow so maybe my Garmin was off going through an underground bridge or two, but my time was about 40 seconds faster than "normal".  The course was well marshaled and the water stops were done well (there were 3).


Post race festivities included typical stuff: sports drink, ice cream sandwiches, and fruit.  I paid about $40 for the race a week before the event, which is typical for a 10K race these days.  The shirt was nice but I like the pure-tech ones.

There were a lot of races to choose from this past Saturday and it was reflected in this race, unfortunately.  I think if it was positioned better there would've been more runners.

I really enjoyed the race course and would definitely consider doing the half marathon next year, as that starts near Bridal Falls in Provo Canyon and sports a largely downhill profile.

I ran well enough.  Definitely not an earth-shattering performance but all things considered, I ran intelligently and with some guts, as indicated by the push at the end.

I've raced over 400 races at this point in my "career" and prior to today, I had "won" 2 of them.  Again, the race was lightly attended (130 total runners for all 3 events) and I had a good time.  I'll mark my calendar for next year's edition on this one.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

2019 Bluffdale Badlands 10K Race Recap - Bluffdale, UT




Official Time: 51:10
Placement: 6th in the 30 - 50 age group, 12th overall
Results: Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: Low 70's 5 - 8 mph wind from the south.
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: [2018]

Mile TimeComments
18:43Off to a slow start, some up hill here
29:22More hills.  Like a gradual grind. Nothing major though.
39:02A little bit more of an uphill, followed by the start of the downhill
48:12Finally can crush it fast.
58:34Flats here. Working by myself but an okay mile for mile 5 of a 10K
5.877.14Cruise to the finish
Total Miles: 5.87 - 51:10




Introduction


I registered for this race a few weeks ago -- as I was looking for something to do and I remember doing this race last year.  It is one of the best bargains as far as races go -- for a little more than $15, I got a breakfast, a race, and a shirt. 

Unlike last year, when there were a ton of wildfires making the air almost unbreathable, this year the air was pretty clear and the temperature was actually decent -- a low 70 degrees.  This race also starts at an ideal time: 6:30 AM, when it is just turning dawn and the air is comfortable.

The race is also located about 20 minutes away from my house and I just remember having a decent experience last year.  So I figured why not, I could at the worst get in a decent tempo run and a t-shirt or I could have a really great race.



The Race


I rolled in just shy of 6 AM for the race and I noticed a lot of people milling about.  Apparently the bibs / shirts hadn't arrived yet.  Uh oh, not a good sign...

I passed the time for using one of the copious porta-potties and by the time I got out, the shirts had arrived.  So I snagged by bib and killed another 30 minutes or so before the start of the race.  

During my warm-up I totally didn't feel like running, let alone racing.  I think I was just tired and had a case of the Saturday morning blahs.  So I was a little apprehensive about my whole experience.

The race started prompt at 6:30 and I was off.  I dug deep and told myself to just hang in there and do my best.  If anything, it would be a solid speed workout.

I remembered the course being an honest one from last year.  There were equal amounts of downhill parts as well as uphill.  I also remember the course as being kind of fun -- for a residential run that is.

The first mile is a little bit of an incline.  The lead pack clearly took off and I broke ranks from the back of the pack and I found myself clearly in the middle.  In fact, for most of the race, I only had the 3rd place girl in sight in front of me and hardly anyone behind me.

The second mile was definitely the hardest.  It is primarily uphill.  It isn't a crazy uphill where you are tempted to walk, but just a death by a thousand cuts kind of hill.  When I reached the summit, I took a quick look over my shoulder and yeah the sum of it was significant but luckily it was spread over nearly a mile.

Finally at the summit, I was able to rinse my mouth out at the first aid station.  And I also got a nice stretch of downhill.  I was able to really start to cruise here and my pace increased significantly. 

I was feeling a little tired / beat up midway through the race.  I certainly wasn't feeling 100% and I began to panic a bit that I was going to have a crappy race.  But I was giving it all I had.

The next 3 miles of the race was a fairly lonesome experience.  Again, I was chasing the 3rd place girl and occasionally I'd look over my shoulder to see if anyone was gaining on me, and no one was behind me.  The course was marked well and I remembered large sections of it last year.  At the important intersections there was a police officer, but Bluffdale is a pretty quiet community.  

This year, at the final turn they had someone marshalling the final turn into the park.  Last year, there was a very light chalk mark that a lot of people missed.  However, I think the 10K was supposed to make a left.  I had made up some ground on the woman in front of me and I saw her go straight on through.

As I was approaching to what I remembered the turn to be, I did not see a single marker to indicate I was supposed to turn.  Could I have been mistaken? 

Since the lead runner had gone that way and I hadn't seen any markings to indicate I was supposed to make a loop around a horse arena (like last year) I kept going and crossed the finish line with little fanfare -- it was a tiny race and most of the 5K runners had clearly finished well before me.




Conclusion


Hard to say how I feel about this year.  I think the race was clearly short on account that last year I ran the exact same course for 6.13 miles.  This year, it came in at 5.87.  Looking at my time from last year, I was in the realm of about the same finishing time, but perhaps a little slower...

There were no finishers medal at this race and unless you were one of the top 3 in your age group (they had super wide age divisions) you weren't going to get a medal.  This was fine, it was a $15 race so my expectations were low.

Post race they had a social pancake breakfast which included eggs, hash browns, I think Tang, and pancakes.  This was included in the price of your race, which was nice.  It was also time to meet and greet people but again the race had maybe a hundred people at most, and most of the 5K runners had already left.

The t-shirt was a tech shirt of similar design from last year's.  It was fine and one I'd use for regular training runs. 

I liked the course.  I know running through a residential area doesn't interest many people, but there was a mix of open fields, residential, and suburbia.  While not a stunning course, for whatever reason, it does hold my interest.


I was pleased with my experience, with the exception of the final quarter mile into the race.  I think the final turn should've been more clearly marked.  I would've liked to have been able to compare last year's time with this year's.  The course had 2 water stops, which is fine for a 10K but the mile markers were way off.  I am glad I was wearing my Garmin. 

But for $15, I got my money's worth.  I'd certainly do this race again.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

2019 Legacy Midnight Run 10K Race Recap - Farmington, UT




Official Time: 53:17
Placement: 11th overall, 2nd in age group
Results: Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: Low 70's but warm, no wind. Run at 11 PM at night
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: [2018] [2017] [2015] [2014] [2013] [2012]

Mile TimeComments
18:25A little hemmed in and trying to get a sense of what I could run
28:21Consistent here
38:20It was warm and beginning to fatigue
48:40Heading back...
58:50Started to get sick feeling, maybe too much food, maybe the heat
69:10Felt like I was running faster here
6.201:29Sprint to the finish
Total Miles: 6.20 - 53:17




Introduction


This past November I signed up for this race -- I got it for a steal at about $25 for a 10KM.  It also helped that I've done this practically every year since I've moved to Utah.  I still remember the first time I ran in 2012 and managed to eek out a blazing 1:41 half marathon.

Some 7 years later, I still show up to this night race.  It is one of the things I "must" do and it is just fun yet competitive race.



The Race


I rolled into the race at about 10:15.  Plenty of time for an 11 PM start.  I remembered all the times when I did the half marathon and I got bused out to the start, so being there after nightfall and not having to jump on a bus was a nice experience.

Packet pickup was a snap and I used the bathroom a time or two before doing my warm-ups.  With it being hot, I didn't really need to warm up that much and sufficed to do a few strides and hip swings.

The race started at 11 PM and I was off and running.

Normally the race is held on the Legacy Bike Trail.  I've run on that trail a dozen times for various races.  However, the Legacy Bike Trail is under some sort of construction so the race was rerouted to the Rail Trail, which is another bike trail just west of the Legacy Trail.

Both trails are nearly identical and since we were running at night, I couldn't tell the difference.  Although the Rail Trail had a few cattle guard fences up that we had to circumnavigate.  The race director had put glow sticks on them and volunteers to help direct traffic.



The first quarter mile took some getting used to running.  I was carrying a headlamp that throughout the race I would periodically use, but for the most part I ran 100% in the dark.  To help see each other, though, we wore glow stick necklaces.

The first mile went by pretty quick and I was happy to see an 8:30(ish) illuminate on my Garmin.  This was about the pace I wanted to run and I was hoping I could hold it.  I was breathing comfortably but the air was a little humid and despite it "only" be 70F degrees, it was sort of humid.

Mile 2 I was starting to find my groove.  The race was lightly attended and the leaders had left me in the dust and I was running with the faster-than-the-middle-of-the-pack group.  As the race went along, people came and went but it was pretty much a solo affair.

Mile 3 I knew I was hurting and while my pace didn't suffer, it seemed a lot more of an effort.  With any new course, I was curious as to when I'd turn around and head back.  Fortunately, the course was well marked and once I hit the second aid station, I looked down at my watch to see a 3.10 distance.  Always a relief to know I am not running too far.

Mile 4 was a struggle.  I could feel my pace dropping and while I had ate light beforehand, it seemed like my stomach was full.  Was I going to puke?

I contented myself with just working through the discomfort and gazing at some of the bolts of lightning raining down on Antelope Island.  It was truly spectacular and part of me just wanted to find a camera and take pictures.  But I had a race to run.

Mile 5 found my pace slowing gradually.  I was trying to do the math in my head on how many people that I had seen come back were in my age group.  I looked behind me and didn't see anyone and at this point too I had people from the 5K on my trail as well as the half marathon.  So who knows who I was competing against now.

It was good to see the 5K runners heading out and got words of encouragement from them.  Again, it was a small race compared to years past so there wasn't as much excitement.

Finally, mile 6 came and I had to run through the tree shaded final stretch.  I flipped on my headlamp and I had to dial my pace back a little.  Footing had turned from asphalt to dirty and grass (at times).  It was just ripe for a fall, but that never happened.

I cross the finish line after a sprint to the finish.  Another 10K in the books.





Conclusion


I grabbed a cool finisher's medal and walked off the nausea of having run fast in the heat.  I was "okay" with my time.  I was a little upset that my pace had dropped so far off in the last mile.



The medal was very nicely designed and heavy duty.  Each finisher, regardless of the race distance received one.

Afterwards, there was a bit of a party.  The Legacy Events Center, where the race was held, had some indoor shelters and there was an alien theme, music and glow lights.  There was also an ample selection of food: cotton candy (yuck after a run), Powerade, fruit, and Fat Boy Ice Cream sandwiches (yum).

I wound socializing and waiting for the results.  I was excited to see that I placed.  However, by the time the awards were being handed out it was after 1 AM and I was beat. 

I got what I paid for at the race: a good time and an accurate, well marshalled course.  


Saturday, July 20, 2019

2019 South Davis Recreation Center Handcart Days 5K Race Recap - Bountiful, UT




Official Time: 25:41
Placement: 39th male, 2nd in the 45 - 49 age group
Results: Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: Low 70's and warm, no wind
Garmin Dump: Forgot it
Previous Years: [2018] [2017] [2015] [2012]


Introduction


6 - 8 weeks ago I decided in my infinite wisdom to sign up for a half marathon -- in the middle of summer.  At the time that I signed up the summer wasn't that bad.  The highs for the day were around 82 and for a Utah summer, it was very mild. 

Unfortunately it didn't stay that way and summer became just that, summer.  So with about a week to go before the race and with temperatures hitting the mid 90's on a daily basis, I opted to switch to the 5 -- despite a mildly bruised ego.

The race director happily switched me over at no additional headache or cost.  I was pretty happy with my decision when I saw race weather showing around the low 70's for the start.  I haven't been getting in as many miles as I should for a half and I don't think I am quite heat acclimated just yet.


The Race


I rolled into the South Davis Recreation Center just as the half marathon was starting off (6 AM).  They had in the low 100 runners and I watched them head on out with just a tiny bit of regret.  I grabbed my bib in short order and began a warm-up.

Unfortunately they were out of my shirts, so apparently they are going to mail me one.  Bummer.  It looked like a good one this year too.

My warm-ups went well and I felt like I had a shot at a decent race.  It was warm and I was on a light mileage week so my legs weren't too beat up feeling.  I was ready to run fast -- I had my fast 5K shoes on and despite the warmth it was a fairly decent day for a 5K.  

Photo of the west side of Bountiful where I'd be running in about 30 minutes


It was during the warm-up that I realized I had forgotten my Garmin.  Argh.  I hate that because it screws up everything.  I had some thoughts about using my phone to track my run, but my phone these days is a fairly large one and the last thing I wanted to do was lug around a heavy phone.



The race started promptly at 7 AM and we were off.  I was hemmed in at the start but within a few hundreds yards I was off.  People were jockeying for position and soon enough I had settled into a pace... not sure what it was but I felt like it was aggressively.

I remember the first 1.5 miles or so as we ran down one of the main drags in Bountiful was mostly working with a young boy who ran about 100 - 200 yards hard and then would stop and tie his shoe or walk for a bit.  I'd thought I have left him in the dust when he came flying by me again.  It was until about half way through the race that I finally got some peace.... 

I was hurting at this point and I sensed that this wasn't going to be my race.  My legs just felt a little heavier and I felt like I wasn't getting enough air.  At about the 1.25 mile mark you also start a steady ascent back to the start.  I've written about it before -- it isn't a crazy uphill but just a death by a 1000 cuts.  

By the time I got to the aid station (at about mile 1.60 or so as memory serves) I knew the final stretch was going to hurt.  As I made my way south on Main Street I counted back the numbers of times I've run this stretch and how almost always I've suffered through it.  I am so close to the finish line yet so far away.

It was demoralizing being passed by the speedy half marathoners.  They had had an hour head start and the ones finishing in the sub 1:30 range fly by me.  Here I was racing my guts out at mile 2 or so and they were on mile 12 and they darted past me like nothing.

I dug deep and I just keep pressing.  I felt like I was going to puke and fortunately no one was behind me for quite some time.  

Finally I reached the summit of the hill and knowing there was less than a quarter of a mile left, I pushed with whatever I had left.  Thinking back I don't remember much about this segment of the race other than it felt so hard and painful.

The finish line finally came and as I crossed I couldn't tell if I had finished in 25:13 or slower... but I wasn't too surprised with my time.




Conclusion


I walked off the light headed feeling and was kind of dejected as I thought about my time.  25 and change.  Ugh, not the race I wanted.

I grabbed my finisher's medal and went over and got some Gatorade.  I reviewed the race with a few people but I only knew a handful of people there.



In the past it's taken them a while to do results and today it was no different.  Sadly it took nearly 2 hours to get the awards handed out.  On the plus side, though, there was a pancake breakfast and plenty of food.

It also took a while to simply find my time and placement.  But I was in no rush and had plenty of time.



I was excited to see that I finished 2nd in my age group.  They had some pretty slick awards and all said and told, I definitely got my money's worth.  I paid $30 and got a premium medal, shirt, refreshments, and breakfast.  Quite a deal.

I reviewed my time from last year and yes, I was slower.  But I appeared to have struggled last year too.  So given the time of year, this is probably not an ideal time to race for me.

This race was a painful reminder that 5Ks are tough.  Yes, the distance is not very intimidating, it is the pace of the race.  From the outset, it is rough going and really a test of fortitude (at least for me) and mental strength to keep pushing the pace even though you start feeling hazy, pukey and jelly-legged.



This course is definitely a test one too, since I've run it at least a dozen times, so it is a good fitness indicator.  It also means that I need to work on my speed endurance in the near future to reverse my time's directions.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

2019 Farmington Festival Days 10K Race Recap - Farmington, UT




Official Time: 55:01
Placement: 38th place overall, 22nd male, 4th in the 40 - 49
Results: Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: Lower 80's, overcast with slight wind from north.
Garmin Dump: Here (Garmin somehow quit recording my location)
Previous Years: [2018] [2012]

Mile TimeComments
19:15First half mile or so is up hill.
28:35Nice stretch here where I could get some speed going. Some downhills
38:55Hot out and it is wearing on me now
48:58Trying to hang in there
59:26Lots of turns and curves here.  I was pretty cooked at this point
69:18Mustered up a bit of a rebound but I was pretty gassed.
6.060:35
Total Miles: 6.06 - 55:01




Introduction


This weekend tends to be fairly light as far as races go.  I think there is a lull between the 4th of July and Utah's state holiday: Pioneer Day.

One of the races that I like to do is the Farmington Festival Days.  Farmington is located about 20 minutes north of Salt Lake City and is in the heart of Davis County.  They celebrate their town's history this weekend and like most summer time celebrations they tie a run to it. 

In the past, they've held a half marathon but recently they just offer a 5K and 10K.  It comes in at an affordable price and it is hard to pass up.



The Race


I rolled into the race at about 6:15 and grabbed my bib and shirt.  I was one of the first ones there so it was easy in and easy out. 

I wound up doing about a mile warm-up before the race and it felt tough.  The air seemed oppressive and muggy.  While it wasn't mid-western humid, it just felt heavy.  My warm-up didn't instill much confidence in me and I still felt half-asleep when I started to toe the line for the 7 AM start.

The race started on time and almost immediately you are greeted by a hill.  The hill lasts about a third or a half of a mile.  So much for getting off to a good start.

I was patient and took my time.  Finally, after rounding a corner the race starts to go flat and in fact you get the downhill.


At this point of the race you are running down Main Street in the bike lane.  Traffic at that hour is pretty light and the course was well marshaled.

Just after the mile marker, the 5K runners hang a right and the 10Kers continue down Main Street.  In a way, I wished I had been running the 5K as I was already hurting.  My legs just weren't responding and I was warm.  However, a 9 minute mile is just way too slow and I know I would've been frustrated running that for my initial mile in a 5K.

We got a bit of downhill into a residential section after mile 2 and I felt my spirits rise a bit. 

After running through the downhill section we are dumped out near I-15.  I was dying for a drink but in the first 2.5 miles -- nothing. 



At this point too we rejoined with the slower 5K runners.  Unfortunately they were walking / running 3-abreast on the tiny bike trail.  It wasn't too hard to navigate through them though. 

Close to mile 4 or so, the 5K runners hung a right to make their final push to the finish, while I continued to hit the Farmington Bike Trail. 

The trail is your standard-issue bike trail but it is heavily shrouded in trees.  It is actually quite pleasant.  You also get to take a few sneak peeks at the Lagoon Amusement park's animals.

I was hurting at this point and was trying to keep my pace going.  I had resigned myself that this wasn't my race but I hoped to beat last year's time (about 53:50). 

I couldn't gain much ground here on account of all the turns and also I just didn't have a lot to give.  I felt pukey and I felt like I was running on fumes.  I wasn't too surprised to see a 9 minute mile flash on my Garmin.

The last mile took me out of the bike trail and back onto Main Street.  There were some rolling hills here and I was working on sticking with the few runners that I had been with for most of the race. 

I remembered from last year that the race was a bit short and I was thanking my lucky stars as we hung the final right hand turn towards the finish. 

I crossed the finish line just over 55 minutes. I just didn't have a lot to give on this one and was totally spent.



Conclusion


No medal on this one.  For a budget race you have to finish in your age group and I was 4th.  Kind of sad about that but I would've had to finish about 4 minutes faster to get into the hardware.


I grabbed a bottle of water at the finish and worked my way around congratulating people that had run with me.  Once my stomach had settled I grabbed a banana and sauntered back to my car to get my stuff and some Powerade.



One of the nice things about this race is you get a super nice french toast breakfast.  While I was eating the clouds finally let loose with a decent rain.  Why couldn't it have done that during the race????



Overall, I was pleased with my race experience.  The course was easy to follow and the Farmington police did a good job managing the traffic so I could run without car interference.

My performance however, not so good.  The heat got to me and to be honest, my heart really wasn't into running this morning.  It was just tough going the minute the air horn went off.



For $20 I got my money's worth.  The shirt is a tech-cotton one.  Pretty simple design and nothing fancy.  The race could've used another water stop. There were two water stops and given the temperature, another one would've been nice.

For the price, I'd definitely do this one again.



Sunday, June 30, 2019

2019 Jurassic 5K Race Recap - Ogden UT




Official Time: 23:30
Placement: 19th overall, 1st in the 45 - 49
Results: Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: Mid 80's, slight wind from the east
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: New To Me

Mile TimeComments
18:24First 100 yards my hamstring wasn't happy
28:42Really struggled in this mile.  A bit of a headwind too.
2.736:23Lots of turns here
Total Miles: 2.73 - 23:30



Introduction


I am not sure what possessed me to once again do two races in one day, but I suppose I like the nature of the challenge.  I had signed up for this race sort of on a whim:  the medal was cool, it was at a park I've wanted to check out for a while, and it was something new.  The morning race was done mostly because it was close to my house and cheap.

I didn't quite think it through though on account that after finishing the first race, I sort of hung around the house all day waiting for the second.  I didn't want to wear myself, so going for a hike or spending an inordinate amount of time on my feet was out of the question.

So I was more or less climbing the walls the moment I finished my first race in the morning.


The Race


I left Salt Lake around 6 PM to make it to Ogden (an hour away) and arrived at the George S. Eccles Dinosaur Park.  This park is mostly known for having a ton of life-like dinosaur monuments in a family-style atmosphere.  The appeal of the race is you get to run the grounds of the park as well as the Ogden bike trail (which also follows a bit of the Ogden Marathon route).

This race is also a night race, starting at 8 PM.  The summer temperatures are finally reaching normal here and it was a balmy 90 degrees when we got there.  By the time the race started it was 85F and the sun was just starting to sink.


Getting there early gave me some time to explore the park and take some pictures of the dinosaurs.

The race was definitely a winner for OnHillEvents.com.  They had a ton of runners and many children in attendance.  It would be tough running though as the was started on a small bike trail.  Fortunately, there weren't that many super serious runners there and it primarily appealed to families.



So when the race started at 8 PM, it was a bit of a mess getting going.  Fortunately, I had managed to sneak my way up into the front area (and it was chip timed) and I got off to a decent start.

Almost right away my hamstring tightened up.  Big time.  It freaking hurt and it was similar to the injury I had in April that sidelined me for nearly 2 months.  By 200 yards I was wondering if I should bail on the race and not risk hurting it even more.



I decided to hang in there and I dropped my pace considerably.  I had warmed up before the race, but for the last month or so, my hamstring has reminded me that it isn't quite 100%.

After a brief run in the park we were deposited to the bike trail where we ran west for a while.  It was surprisingly hilly -- nothing killer, but definitely not flat.  My hamstring had dwindled down to a low roar and I'll be honest, I was still pretty beat from the morning's 5K.  I was just tired and I wasn't too surprised to see the first mile come in over 8 minutes.



After mile 1 we did a loop and started coming back towards the park.  It was fun seeing the people I had left behind and getting encouragement from the runners / walkers.  Once I reached the park's gates again, I passed by it to continue the next out and back section.

I was working with a few people here, mostly younger folks, but it was lonesome running.  I accepted the fact that my hamstring was questionable with every step but I held on.  I didn't see a lot of people behind me and the front runners definitely weren't in my age group, so I held back a little more.



The stretch back to the park had a nice tail wind and I started to pick up the pace a bit after the 2nd mile.  I was a little worried about how I'd find my way around the park's grounds since I was more or less running solo.  No one was behind me and the next person in front of me was quite a ways away.

Fortunately, the race organized had roped off areas you weren't supposed to run in and had put spray chalk arrows.  I had zero problems finding my way around the park or knowing where to go.

I couldn't really get to full speed, however, in the park.  There were a ton of turns and the lighting had gone down a bit.  I kept looking at my watch and I only had about half a mile to go when all of the sudden the finish line appeared.

I crossed under it with a time of 23:30 but with a distance of  2.73.  Huh?



Conclusion


My hamstring was tight but not super painful when I crossed.  It hadn't gotten any worse after the initial shock of not being happy with me.

I was pretty shot though, after my second race.  I started checking in with other people and they too found the race was short.

The race director commented on it that he had measured the course and that there were several turns in the park's tight confines that may throw one's GPS off.  Given my time, I suspect that 2.73 was a bit short and the race was likely in the 2.9 race.  Hard to say without mapping it on MapMyRun.Com.

The medals were beautiful.  To be honest, it was about half the reason why I signed up for the race.  I managed to snag first place in my age group.


Post race refreshments included Fat Boy ice cream sandwiches and sports drink.  I had brought my own beverage so I didn't really grab that many.

Course markings were great and I really had a good time.  It was nice to see a lot of friends, both new and old at the race and it was also awesome seeing families having a good time together.



The price of the race, for me, was over $45.  Kind of expensive for a 5K but I registered fairly late in the game and I paid for an upgraded shirt.  I loved the finisher's medal was heavy duty and I loved seeing the park.  The grounds were truly awesome and I wish I had had more time to read the informational placards.

My suspicion is the race is short.  I was only running at about 80% and my time was quite a bit better than the morning's run.