AM- Sunrise run 8k, another of the Greenville Corporate shield events. It's a fairly large race, with almost 900 people this year, and is somewhat top heavy. I had never done it before and it was my first 8k since college. I had planned to use this as a speed workout for my trail 14k in a few weeks, though I had hoped to be in much faster shape. My ankle injury has restricted my for 6 weeks now. Add on that this week has been very bad for sleep plus a slight cough, and I wasn't overly confident. The GE team looked to be stacked, with maybe 10 people under 30 min. My last fast race was the RDT 5k in January where I crushed my PR, finishing in 16:01. My 8k PR is 27 min, so I hoped to be somewhere in that ballpark. It's nice to wear my green shorts again, too, and even had a few people recognize me and thank me for my blog posts.
Woke at 5 am, ran a bit, drove to the race, ran more with the guys, then lined up. It was warm (70 deg) and very muggy. I planned to follow my normal philosophy of starting as fast as I can, assuming my endurance will let me hang on. We started and I found myself around 10th place. Mile 1 went by in 4:57, though everyone thinks it was short since it did not feel like we were running that fast. Kyle was the only GE guy ahead of me, though Dan and Jim were immediately behind me. I felt great through about mile 2, though Dan did pull ahead (I didn't see mile markers 2 and 3, so no splits). I felt ok during mile 3 but just couldn't move as fast as I wanted. Jim and Phil both pulled away from me rapidly around mile 4, though they both said that it was more me slowing down than them speeding up. I was definitely not enjoying life and just wanting the race over- today, my go-out-hard philosophy didn't work well. One more GE guy, Jacob Behal, pulled away a minute later and I was alone with my fatigued legs the rest of the way. I turned the final corner as the clock counted to 28 min, with me finishing in 28:01. My shirt was soaked with sweat, though most of the guys were so bad that even their shoes were squishy. Ahh, summer races. Winning time was 25:23 for the men, 29:24 for the women. Results here.
Overall, a very blah race. I just didn't have a good run, and probably didn't deserve one based on training, sleep, etc. Admittedly, 28 min 8k isn't bad. Most years, it would have been top 5-10 at this race, and never lower than number 2 GE runner. This year, though, I finished 16th overall and 6th GE runner. Wow. We definitely have a good team- I dare say we could be competitive at a normal college meet (not top level, but mid-level). Not bad for a bunch of married-with-kids, 40-hr-a-week mid-age guys.
Finished with a long cooldown, then went to REI garage sale.
Hopefully I can feel better at my next race. Jim provided some words of encouragement, reminding me that he dropped out of a 5k last weekend cause he felt so bad, and now he ran well today. Anyways, I plan to get in a few more speed workouts.