Saturday, May 16, 2009

Healthy Kidney 10K Race Report

Wow, what an odd race. First, its the same 6 mile loop as the Scotland Run last month - start on the west side at 62d, run the loop, and finish on about 68th street. The weather was misty, foggy and mild (in 60's I am guessing). The tops of the buildings around Central Park were shrouded in fog.
I picked up my number, and it was in the 3000's. What the heck ? I have finished recent races in top 1500 or so and yet my number keeps getting bigger -- thus I keep moving back in the corrals. That means a slower race group, more people to dodge, and harder to get a fast pace. Not a good sign for a PR. I was shooting for 7:30 miles.
Right as we started, I felt a couple of rain drops. By the end of the first mile, a full fledged downpour. Not as constant as Scotland run, but this was much harder rain. Mile 1 was good 7:27. Mile 2 is uphill
and in middle of driving rain, 7:01. Wow - that's the fastest mile I've ever run in a race, and my heart rate shows it - average 172 Better slow down. Mile 2-3 is down Harlem Hill to East side. Easiest mile in the race. 7:04, but average HR 174. Just as in the Scotland Run, my Garmin had the course mile marker for the third mile as significantly too long -- by about 30 yards or so. (My split time is on Garmin, not the course, so it is the true mile per Garmin. As per the course, I bet my third mile was 7:25 or so.) Also ran through the 5K split in about 24 minutes (gun time, and my net time was about 1:30 behind gun), so I am on pace for sub 47:00 or so. But Mile 3 to 4 is the hard one. Up two big hills, and I did it in 7:55. But I feel bad. Really bad, and my HR is up to 178, which is 94% of max. Uh oh.

Now, though, all I gotta do is cruise home with 7:30 miles and I have my 47 minute goal time. It had stopped raining, but my glasses are completely fogged up - despite my rigorous application of Speedo no fogger last night. (I am going to write another review of anti fogger potions. In sum, none have worked for me.) Mile 5 was hard. 7:31, with average HR 178. In Mile 6, I really slowed down 8:18, average HR 174. Goodbye 47 minute time. The stub mile of 0.32 miles was 2:32 (7:56 pace), average HR 178. Final time: 47:45. Garmin had run at 6.32 miles for average pace of 7:33 per mile. I wanted to average 7:30, so not bad, and definitely a fast time for me. Nearly 2 minutes faster than my time in the Scotland Run, which was a month earlier.

Well, I just looked up my Final Age Graded Time as per NYRR: 59.9. I barely missed my goal of 60! I am sure though if you add in the extra distance I ran (the 6.32 vs. 6.2 miles NYRR has the race), I had a 60. But that doesn't count. And I will have to look up what 6.32 miles at 47:45 produces for a VDOT and predicted marathon time.
Definite progress, and first time I have pushed myself that hard.


  1. Thank you so much for the kind words! I definitely appreciated it. I was beating myself up today for missing the race until I realized there's just no point. Tomorrow's a brand new day to lace up my sneakers and train for the next race.

    Anyway, reading your post, I got to experience the Healthy Kidney 10K vicariously through you. Your pace is fantastic! I'm only 26, and my pace is 11:30, but it gets faster slowly but surely. I used to weigh 65 pounds more than I do now and couldn't even run a half mile without stopping, so training for these races have been a big deal to me.

    Thank you again for your encouragement, and yes, I will be at the Dash & Splash on the 13th! Can't wait for it :o)

  2. Congrats on your race. So much of that 10K in Central Park is about pacing. Run too fast in the first 3 miles and you die coming around Harlem's so tricky! Plus, the rain didn't really help either.

    Great job out there today. Not an easy race by any means.

  3. Congratulations on your run! I saw your 5K split posted and thought "Damn...." I knew where your race report would likely go.

    I fell way short of my goal (though still a PB) - legs were dead even before the start, I never really felt I could push them the way I wanted. I'm happy I still got a personal best (even if way short of where my training should now allow), since the Seattle Marathon is the goal here, and I ran a 20-miler Mon, speed on Tues, and tempo Wed. The 8:11 first mile, with way too many slow runners in the way (I don't know how much faster I could have gone), pretty much killed my hope of a fast 10K, given how my legs felt. On the positive side, I negative split the 5Ks by about 20 seconds. However, my working theory is that negative splitting is the best way to assure a less than optimal race for me - that is, that I didn't push hard enough at the start. My fastest miles (in order) were 5, 6, and 2. Alas.


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