Sunday, October 30, 2005

University of Washington Dawg Dash - Husky Stadium, Seattle

This is one of the biggest short races I've ever seen. There had to be over one thousand people there. This is a race worth preregistering for. Elizabeth and I spent about twenty minutes waiting in line to register. They gave away nice longsleeve shorts.

After registering outside, you walk back around into Husky Stadium. The 5Kers started out first. We ran halfway around the track and then up out of the stadium. Crossing the road we kept running uphill on the campus. The first mile has some climbing. I clocked it in 6:40. I hit the second mile at 13:10. Maintaining a 6:30 pace I finished in 20:13. If I had done 20 minutes or less I could have had a technical running shirt for free. So... not a great race and I don't have too many excuses. Maybe my body thinks the season is over.

Looking forward to Saturday's race in Woodside.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Stanford Theta Breakers 5K

I got to Stanford Stadium at 9am just as the race was supposed to start. I was tired from the race the day before and staying out late the night before. A bad idea probably but if you race every weekend day its going to happen.

We watched the 10Kers take off around the track and head up out of the stadium. Then we lined up on the far side of the track as well for a half loop before heading up out of the stadium.

I clocked the first mile in 6:25 (I had been doing 6:10 or less in recent races), and hoped to maintain that through the race. I hit mile 2 at 12:50. During the last mile I wasn't exactly sure of the route (the markings were hard to see in the midst of many possible paths through campus). So I slowed down alongside someone who looked like they knew where they were going. When we saw the stadium I picked up my pace. I finished in 20:23, good for second place among the over 40s and 14th overall. I hope to get my times below 20 minutes again at next Sunday's race at UW in Seattle.

Nothing particularly special about this race. There are a bunch of others on just about the same route (such as the Home Run coming up in a couple weeks). There's also the issue of random pedestrians and missing direction markings. Give me a trail run any day. I recommend running elsewhere if there's another race. Despite that, I'll probably end up doing the route again soon at the Home Run.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Napa Wine Country Classic 10K

A short steep trail run - my favorite. So it was worth the drive to Napa.

I drove up to Calistoga on Friday night. You could smell the ripe grapes and the harvest msot of the way. The next morning, we got to Bothe-Napa Valley State Park at just before 9am. There was a marathon and half marathon on the same course. Dave Horning (who runs envirosports) sent the marathoners out first and the half marathoners afterwards, with about 5 to 10 minutes in between. This is an unfortunate ordering since we quickly ran onto the back of the half marathoner pack. The fast 10Kers were slowed down by the half marathoners for most of the race. I hope they reconsider this ordering next year.

I took off quickly but tried not to pass the leader, Daniel Hass. The trail started with just a gentle incline. As we went further it got steeper and narrower I was feeling good to start and hung with Dan for about the first three miles. I guess all those 5Ks have affected my endurance as I started to flag a bit at the three mile mark.

At three miles some technical downhills started and I wasn't feeling inspired to throw myself down the rocks. I finished in 50:55 for ninth overall (out of something over one hundred) and first in the 40-49 age group:

What a pretty race! And a great excuse to hit Napa during the height of the grapecrush. I'll probably do it next year even if we have to stumble over the marathoners again.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Run for Children's Hospital - Seattle

This 5K race was at Sand Point State Park, just north of UW, where several other small races are held. I felt fine at the start but hadnt run all week. I was just hoping to break twenty minutes. Its a very flat venue - no excuse for not doing so.

One of the local newscasters was also running. He asked if anyone was planning on running it in less than twenty minutes. Several runners raised their hands and perhaps I was the only old guy. So he said to the crowd that he'd be "running with me". "Yeah you in the black!". Was that a challenge?

I clocked the first flat mile in 5:55. Too fast - again!I'm still waiting for my busted Triax Elite watch replacement to come in so that I can pace better. I slowed down to do the second mile in 12:25. At this point the anchorman pulled even with me, making me realize I was going too slow. I sped up to do the third mile at nineteen even. I kicked past one guy at the end to finish in 19:37. 6:20 even pace. Not too bad given recent performance. I'm going to try to start the next mile in my next flat race in 6:20, and save the speed for the last mile.

Lots of fast guys in Seattle in general and out today - so no medals for the kids.

There was a band and Josh did a kids race afterwards. Worth doing again.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Share for the Shelter Fun Run

I dont know whether this counts as a race ( but they did have prizes. This benefit for the Berkeley Animal Shelter was held late Sunday morning in Berkeley Aquatic Park. I had failed to get into Sentinel Triathlon first thing Sunday because I didn't have my packet or my number (didnt have time to go to Santa Cruz on Saturday to get it). So, in desperation for a race and not having time to get to Bridge to Bridge, I drove to Berkeley for this event.

It was a 7.5km course, twice around the lake in the aquatic park. I did the first 3.75k (2.33 miles) in 15:17 (turning comfortable 6:30 miles). I finished in 31:24 and won by several minutes. Good for a $30 gift certificate to Saul's.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Running of the Bulls 5K

This race,, through downtown Palo Alto promised the presence of several Olympians that acted as "bulls" and "cows". It was a very competitive field with what seemed to be just about all of the Peninsula and South Bay faster short distance runners. There were gold medals for the first twenty five men and women who beat the first cow and silver medals for the next 50 finisher men and women.

I was feeling pretty tired at the start. We lined up outside up Peers Park and did a loop through the neighborhood. I turned the first mile in 6:15. I did the second mile at 13 minutes. I didn't see the third mile sign and I'm guessing I hit it at 19:30. I finished at 20:13. A bit disappointing as I'd been doing mostly sub 20 minute 5ks on the flats lately. Results at