RR Sturgis Falls HM
Did a local HM this morning. I have done this race three years in a row now, and actually wrote up last year's race also. Search on my name for Sturgis and you can find it.
Goal of this race was a 1:35, to be in line with a slight improvement over last year (1:36:40) to go along with my goal of cutting a few minutes off a Oct. marathon.
Short: Didn't hit my goal, cruised in at 1:37:30, so lost 50 seconds over last year. That will happen. I didn't expect greatness due to missing some training and having an absollute terrible last ten days of training. But, it all really come down to hitting mile 8 and needing to cool off a bit, losing all my time between 8 and 10.
Longer: Nice local race. Like last year we have had nasty flooding and had to run a modified route. No biggee since we did that one last year as well. Weather was forecasted to be nasty humid with a chance of showers, but the morning was 3 degrees cooler than planned (67F) and felt not too bad. Took off with 300 HM'ers and about 600 5k'ers who split off about 1/2 mile in. Tried to settle in an ok pace knowing I wanted to try and hit consistent 7:15 to hit the 1:35 goal. Hard to judge since the mile markers varied by around 25-50 yards from last year. Wasn't sure what to believe. Still hit the 4 mile mark in 29:08, just a few seconds off pace, but I was feeling OK and the weather started clouding up which was gong to help when we hit second half. Two more miles right on pace at 14:30, but I was starting to feel a little warm. The water stops weren't optimal for me, being at 3, 5.5 and 8 in this section. That first one was a little long in coming, though I sipped through a small Gatorade while waiting for the start. I like to really hydrate. A group of three caught me at about 6.5 and were going about the pace I wanted so I latched on and let them drag me to the water stop, but I lost 8-12 seconds per mile from 6-8 which explains why they caught me. Hit mile 8 which starts a long gradual uphill and was in rough shape. I grabbed water to drink, then Gatorade to drink, then water to dump on my head. It was looking like rain and I hoping for it from 8-9. Staggered my way through mile 9 and 10, losing :24 then :40. That brought me back to the uphill section....but this time going down. I used that to propel me back on track as the rain and wind started driving. Ah sweet cooldown. I stayed barely on pace the nexy two mile, and had to dig pretty deep to fight off the slow down in the final 1.1. I hit my watch right at the 1:37:30 point (no chips, not sure what they will officially score me at.)
Besides having a better last couple weeks of training, I should have carried some food with me. I read through last year's report when I got home and I had chowed down 2 packs of sport beans (my preferred food) during the race. Not sure why I went with nothing today. Maybe I thought they would have something on course, maybe I simply forgot, maybe I am just stupid. Overall I am happy with the race, the 1:35 goal was pulled about out of a hat. I am toying with a 3:20 or maybe 3:15 marathon goal this year, so I still have some work to do.
OK, that's about it.