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<span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">On Sunday I ran the Cal 10-mile for the third consecutive year. Just “one more for the road” I promised myself…I’ve continued to stay a step behind the recovery curve, surely because I started racing again too soon after early December marathon. It was my fourth race since then but the other 3 were short, between 3 and 4.5 miles.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">With this being one of my favorite races and near perfect weather conditions expected, I could not resist. And since I’d run it the last 3 years it would give me a good benchmark of where I’m at as I start rebuilding for the spring.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">After my usual short pre-race sleep I got my stuff together and headed for French Camp, a very small town just outside of Stockton in Nothern Cal. Within a little more than an hour’s drive I pulled into the San Joaquin Hospital grounds where the race would start and finish. The course is a certified out and back on a deserted highway. Just past mile 3, and again at mile 7on the way back, is a long overpass. The rest is perfectly flat. Weather was perfect for racing as advertised…cloudy sky, temps in low 40’s, and only a hint of a breeze.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">As I began my warmup I could notice the mild groin and hip soreness that has been with me most of the time since the marathon. However, it started to work itself out after a few minutes of jogging and I was feeling pretty good. I hadn’t done any form of speed workout since early October other than the races I’d run, but mileage had been decent including a couple 14 milers. After almost 3 miles of warmup, including a few pickups of about 30 seconds each, I put my sweats in the car and jogged over to the start.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">At 9:00 sharp we were off and running down the access road that would take us to the highway where most of the race would take place. I had no pacing plan other than to start out at tempo effort and see how I felt. Miles 1-3 went by in 6:34, 6:46, and 6:56 respectively. The slower mile 3 was expected, since it had been the same for the past 2 years. I believe that the mile marker is slightly misplaced but at least they are consistent. During mile 4 I started to find my stride as we went up and over the overpass and began the push towards the half way turn around…6:40 split. About this time a guy in his 40’s had pulled alongside me, and there was a handful of other runners just ahead and behind to makeup a little subgroup that was running in somewhat of a gap.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">It was starting to get competitive as we approached the turn around at mile 5; split was 6:49 for that one and 33:45 for the first half of the race. At that point I thought I might be hard pressed to break 1:08. A slowdown of 30 seconds or more over the 2nd half would be no shock, but I pressed on, still going stride for stride with the same guy. Another 20-50 meters ahead was a nice target to help us focus. She was wearing one of those tight track outfits—an orange one--and she had a very nice…uhh…stride. Mile 6 passed in 6:40, nine seconds faster than we’d come through the same mile on the way out. It was time to tackle the overpass again—if I could come down the other side without legs feeling too beat up I should be able to suck it up for the last 3. Up and over we went…6:37 for mile 7…maybe those marathon miles are starting to give something back besides aches and pains…I’m supposed to be slowing down. Now the little group is starting to bunch up more…this is fun…somewhat painful, but fun. The guy who has been with me since mile 4 is still there, but we are starting to reel in a few just ahead, including Ms. Orange Tights. In the meantime a little teenage gal pulls even and eventually starts to pull ahead of the little group. I try to stay with her (I have no shame) and open a little daylight on my nemesis in the process. Mile 8 goes in 6:45…the same one that took 6:56 on the way out. For the last 2 miles I continued to chase the young gal, and although I never caught her, ran 6:39 and 6:31 for those two, while passing a couple more in the process. The last 5 went in 33:13, for a negative split of 33 seconds.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">Final time 1:06:58; first in 60-64 AG and 36 overall (small field of 140 or so, but mostly diehards)</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">Although 27 seconds slower than last year I was happy with the way I ran. For last year’s I was doing track workouts and focus was specifically for the race, while this year’s was run off the conditioning I built up in the fall and as more of an afterthought.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-size:medium;"><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';">Thanks for reading along…or even if you skipped to the end</span> <span style="font-family:Wingdings;"><span style="font-family:Wingdings;">J</span></span></span>
 

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Congratulations on a well-run race and AG win. It sounds like a nice day for a race...with some nice scenery <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif">.
 

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Solid - even more impressive than the negative split is the fact that someone in the 60-64 AG has the same thought processes I have during a race: "OK, let me run behind that hottie up there, that will be good motivation!"<br><br>
Some might call you a dirty old man, but I call that keepin' it real!
 

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Jim - nice race, and that was a very strong finish - mile 10 at 6:31 is pretty impressive!<br><br>
I thought about joining you but decided instead to "save it for Kaiser". are you planning on running that one? it's just another 3.1 miles (if you do them at 6:31, you'll be done in about 1:26!<br><br>
- Alan
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
<span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">Thanks Alan,</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">I’ve actually planned <i>not</i> to run Kaiser, which might be easier said than done. It really is one of the better races around and will be hard to pass up if weather looks favorable. I just went back on a training schedule that my coach made up and it doesn’t include that race. He thinks I race too much and he’s probably right, but I might try to justify it anyway. I’m scheduled for 10 miles, including 6 x 1600, on Feb 2 and 15 miles easy the following day (Kaiser day). Wouldn’t you think that a HM race isn’t that much more demanding than following the schedule? What I’m thinking now is not pre registering but remaining open to the possiblity of signing up on race day if conditions are good, but backing out if there is a lot of wind and/or rain forecast.</span></span><br><br><span style="font-family:'Times New Roman';"><span style="font-size:medium;">A 6:31 pace is 1:25:26, btw. Seeing as I just averaged 6:42 for 5k less under ideal conditions I don’t think it’s in the cards. I managed a 6:36 average for my last HM in October but it was probably my peak for all of last year. How’s your training coming along? What will you be shooting for? Are you doing any races between now and then? Remember that club 5k on the track I was telling you about? It’s the week before Kaiser…maybe not a bad tuneup?</span></span>
 

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Hi Jim - I dont have any races before Kaiser - I'm trying to limit it to 1 every 5 weeks (basically I do 4 hard weeks, then 1 cutback week. i do the race at the end of the cutback so it acts a mini taper).<br><br>
Training is going well, and I am well into the higher mileage for me now. Doing mid 70s with a long of 19-22 every Sunday - January shouold be my first ever 300+ month! Still not doing any speedwork but I have added in some strides and I'm doing more hills than I was. Tempos are getting faster and I'm feeling pretty damn fit right now, but also realise I am probably constantly on the edge of injury/overtraining. Trying to walk that fine line......<br><br>
Kaiser is a stepping stone towards a <span style="text-decoration:underline;">potential</span> sub 3 marathon attempt in May (Edinburgh, Scotland). I told myself if I can run a 1:25 half in April, I'll go for sub 3 in May (if weather is good). At Kaiser I'm shooting for 1:27:30 (6:40). last 1/2 was at CIM and that was 6:52 (1:29:56) so this is the midpoint from 1:30 to 1:25. I'm looking for 12 seconds pace increase in 9 weeks. I track my basic fitness by analysing the trend of average heartrate/average speed. It's pretty remarkable how straight the line is when I look at the trailing 3 week average of that plotted against time.<br><br>
So what that means is that I will probably have scientific evidence pointing to my ability to run a 1:27:30. Being something of a scientist I like having a goal that I can meet in excel - it gives me a good reason to push thru when it's gets ugly halfway through instead of wimping out.<br><br>
Realistically if conditions are good I am in good shape to get near a 1:27:30, and if I miss it I'll be disappointed. However, getting to 1:25 (6:29) in the 2 months following Kaiser is going to be a challenge. (I'm also looking for a fast half on 4/13 if you know of anything - there's one is Pescadero but it looks like it is uncertifed and partly on a trail...)<br><br>
Hopefully I'll see you at Kaiser, where you can do your "easy 15".....<br><br>
- Alan
 

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I'm hoping to be remotely as quick as you are when I'm your age <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"><br><br>
Congrats on a great race and your AG win, Jim - good luck at Kaiser if you decide to run it
 

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Hey Jim,<br><br>
Great race and report. Enjoyed it. Was wondering where you were.
 

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Jim, nice racing! Your result compares very well with last year when you were keyed for this race. Congratulations on the AG win.
 

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WTG, Jim. Another fine race. I hope to still be running when I'm your age. <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif">
 
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