Sunday, February 5, 2023

2023 Run SLC 5K Race Recap - Salt Lake City, UT

Official Time: 23:52
Placement: 8th in the 50 - 54
Results:  Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: 26 degrees. Slight wind from the south.
Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: [2022] [2021]

Mile TimeComments
17:31Feeling good.  Started a little too soon in the race so I had to do some weaving.
27:50Felt like I was running faster than this.  Still sub 8 is good
37:57Kind of an uphill portion of the race but collected on the final push which was slightly downhill
3.080:33Wanted to get under 24.  Mission accomplished!
Total Miles: 3.08- 23.52


There aren't many races in January and February, so if you want to race, you can't be too choosy.  One race I do enjoy going to is the Run SLC 5K.  This is the third year I've done this one and it is first race of a 3-part series, which includes a 10K and 15K.  I've only done the 5K race on account the 10K conflicts with other races that I like to run.

The race starts off at the Salt Lake Running Company's (a shoe / running store) downtown store and follows about a 1.45 mile out and back course (after an initial .10 of a mile).  The race is well attended and usually brings out the best of the best at the race.

The Race

The race starts at 8 AM and I got into the race site around 7:15 and found one of the last decent spots.  It was pretty much the same spot I had parked in the year before.

I wound up killing about 15 minutes and then did a 20 minute warm-up.  I felt pretty good running in my Saucony Endorphin Pro Speeds 2.  I eyed the competition and there were a ton of serious runners warming up.  

The race started on the button and I had made the decision to start almost dead last.  As you can see from the photo above, the race start is clogged with lots of runners.  The race is chip timed and I cleared it with the timer to start the race a full minute after everyone else had already started.  This would allow me to get off to a decent start and not get elbowed.

It mostly worked.  Although I did spend a bit of time zig-zagging around people before I finally caught up to people running near my pace.  But it was motivating for me to pass people and really work up a head of steam.

I smashed the first mile in 7:31.  I felt like it was a bit fast but I was going with it.  

Another mental boost was how little I was wearing.  With it being 26F, most people were bundled up.  I had doubled up on a shirt but was in shorts.  I felt fast but I'll be honest, my legs did feel a bit chilled at times.

I knew the course well and I kept watching for the turn around.  The race is pretty much one long out-and-back along an older subdivision.  The road is heavily banked too, which would definitely irritate my IT-bands if I ran on it frequently.  

I hit the half way point in a pretty good overall position.  I was still passing people since I had started so late, but I was hurting and the amount of people I was passing was getting less and less.

Mile 2 felt desperate and painful.  I had glanced at my watch a few times and saw myself running in the low 8's.  I just couldn't get into that next gear.  Occasionally I'd get a spurt of speed -- mostly to pass a few people but I was okay with a 7:50 for mile 2.

I had the impression that mile 2 to 3 was mostly downhill, but I was wrong.  It sort of seemed like the race was a gentle incline coming and going.  I suspect my perception was mostly based upon how painful the running was.

I really tried to focus and push through the pain.  The last quarter mile or so is a gentle downhill and I kept willing myself forward towards the I-80 underpass.  I knew once I hit that, there wasn't much left of the race.

Mile 3 came in at 7:57, respectable, but not what I was hoping for.  I thought for sure this one would be about 15 seconds faster.

I was weaving around people near the finish and I could hear the bustle of the finish line celebrations.  Other people had the same idea and were pushing too, but I still had a solid sprint speed left.  I darted around people and really turned on the jets and made the final turn and almost tumbled over the finish line, I had pushed so hard. 


So I'll be honest, I was hoping to do a bit better at this race.  The conditions were just about perfect for me and I had a good warm-up. And by all accounts, any time I can go under 24 minutes is a win in my book.

But I was hoping to take it up a notch this week.  I had run 23:50 for a 5K two weeks ago (the course was short, but I busted out the final .1 of a mile).  That course was quite a bit harder and it included some hills.

This week, I started off pretty aggressively and I felt like I lost focus just after the turn around.  I was pretty gassed at that point and I just couldn't push a little harder.

I also was coming off of a subpar training week.  I had pulled something in my back, which triggered something in my hip, and I did minimal amount of running the week leading into the race.  On the plus side, I was well rested -- on the downside, I didn't seem primed for speed.

This race is pricey -- coming in at about $40.  It is quite a bit cheaper if you sign up for the entire series but logistically that is hard for me to do.  I did have a nice experience and the course was well marshalled and I had a great time.  Post race refreshments included fruit and snacks and sports beverage.  

The course last year measured in at 3.10, and most people's watches came in at 3.10 or 3.11.  Not sure why mine registered slightly less. 

I really like this race and it tends to bring out my competitive nature.  The fastest runners come out for this one and it takes some talent to hang with them.  It is inspiring to see so many runners out there and be apart of a speedy 5K.

Upcoming Races

02/11: 2023 South Davis Recreation Center Sweethearts 5K - Bountiful, UT (Confirmed)
02/18: 2023 SoJo Date Dash 5K - South Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
02/26: 2023 Las Vegas Half Marathon - Las Vegas, NV (Confirmed)
03/04: 2023 March Madness 10K - West Bountiful, UT (Confirmed)
03/25: 2023 Riverton Half Marathon023 Riverton Half Marathon - Riverton, UT (Confirmed)
04/08: 2023 Eggs Legs 10K - West Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
04/22: 2023 Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)
04/29: 2023 Blossom Run 10K - Santaquin, UT (Confirmed)
07/29: 2023 Timp 10K - American Fork, UT (Confirmed)
08/19: 2023 Rock 'N Roll Salt Lake City Half Marathon - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)
09/23: 2023 Witch Run 10K - West Jordan, UT (Confirmed)
10/21: 2023 Haunted Half 5K - Salt Lake City, UT (Confirmed)
10/28: 2023 Haunted Half 5K - Provo, UT (Confirmed)

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