Monday, February 20, 2023

2023 SoJo Date Dash 5K Race Recap - South Jordan, UT

Official Time: 25:32
Placement: 2nd in the 50 - 54, 10th overall
Results:  Here
Race WebsiteHere
Weather: 32F - breeze from the south
Course Map / Garmin Dump: Here
Previous Years: First year for me

Mile TimeComments
17:40Gentle downhill at the start. Slightly congested, but off to a good start
28:31Definitely was feeling it at about 1.25 miles. Hardest part of the course coming
37:37Dream killer slow grind hill
3.251:45Smash the final quarter mile.
Total Miles: 3.25- 25.35 (24:33 for 3.10)


So I signed up for the SoJo Date Dash 5K primarily on a whim.  I didn't have anything on my race calendar for the day and I had a case of FOMO.

The race is located about 5 miles down the road from me and it was reasonably priced.  The SoJo race series is a fairly low-key event, offering a cheap race experience with all the thrills of a race.

The Race 

I arrived at the race scene about 45 minutes before the 10 AM start.  It was nice to have a leisurely morning and be able to get a decent sized breakfast down before the race.  It also had warmed up enough to make the brisk morning, tolerable weather-wise.  

The race was lightly attended so pickup wasn't a big deal.  I socialized for a bit and then started off on a 1.2 mile shakeout run.  I felt sluggish and I was having a hard time getting into a "race mentality".

The race is held on the Jordan River bike trail.  It is a paved trail used by dog walkers, cyclists and other runners.  It is scenic and flat.  I had run the course before -- in parts -- but never in this configuration.  I had studied the course and knew the route but I was less than thrilled to see a monster hill at about 1.75.  I had taken on the hill before so I knew what I was in for, but I knew that today was not going to be a "personal record" day.

The race started at 10 AM.  The race doesn't offer age group awards and the award system is sort of haphazard at best.  The top finishers usually receive some sort of prize but it isn't advertised what the criteria is.  So I was mostly running this as a hard workout.

I took off at a solid pace.  There was a bit of a breeze coming in from the south and unfortunately there wasn't anyone to shield myself.  It definitely felt cold -- had I underdressed?  I was wearing a light hat, thick gloves, 2 t-shirts and short shorts.  Usually that covers me for a 5K race at this temperature.

The first mile was entirely on the bike trail and I smashed a 7:40 mile. Not too shabby, but I certainly felt winded.  I suspect I went out a little too fast.

After the first mile, we jumped into a residential neighborhood.  I was chasing down some runners ahead of me, but I didn't see anyone behind me.  I knew the course, but at the same time, there are quite a few turns.

The runners ahead of me were moving pretty good but I was making ground on a few of them. I kept picking out runners to try and work off of.  The route got a little hilly at times -- mostly downhill so I felt my pace quicken.  But I was holding back a bit -- I knew the hill was coming.

I finally rounded the corner and the hill appeared.  I haven't done much hill work on account of my back injury, which seems to aggravate it.  My goal was to simply maintain a strong effort, get up it, and recover.

It was a painful process and yeah the hill is steep, but the distance up it is reasonably short -- maybe .10 to .15 of a mile.

Mile 2 hit at 8:30.  I was expecting something in the 9's, so I was actually pleased to see this.

After some flat running, I finally got the hill going down.  It was exhilarating and I felt a quickness in my turnover.  I wound up catching one of the runners and I started to work on getting the next one.

A few more turns and I returned back to the bike trail.  I had measured the course from the bridge to the finish line at just over .63 miles.  My Garmin indicated that this course was going to be significantly longer than just 3.10 miles.

I looked over my shoulder and there was no one closing in on me and the runner ahead of me had clearly gained some ground on me.  Part of me slowed down a bit.  My time was well off a "normal" 5K and with the course being long and no one in pursuit, I let off the gas a bit.

The finish line finally came into view and my Garmin read 3.10 miles -- I lapped it for a 24:33.  Definitely slower, but not unexpected given the course.  I had also run a 7:37 mile -- thanks for the massive downhill.

I turned on the jets for the final .15 of a mile and crossed the finish line in 25:35.


I was handed a water bottle at the end, which I think indicates I got a top finisher prize.  Not everyone got one and I suspect since I was in 10th place overall, that that was my prize.

I had run about what I expected I would've considering the hill.  If the course had been entirely on the bike trail, I think my time would've been more in line with what I've been running of late.

The course was marshalled well and I got a nice shirt.  The medal is probably one of the cutest I've ever gotten.  Post race refreshments was simply water.  For a $20 race, I got what I ordered and I had a decent experience.

If this race pops up on an open weekend I'd do it again.  For the price, it was a nice experience and a good opportunity to socialize.  

Upcoming Races

02/26: 2023 Las Vegas Half Marathon - Las Vegas, NV (Confirmed)
03/04: 2023 March Madness 10K - West Bountiful, UT (Confirmed)
03/18: 2023 Vineyard City Gold Rush 5K - Vineyard, 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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