I can't describe how much fun it was today at the Rodeo Run 10K. I'll try.
I got there around 8, parked in the free parking lot near the finish and took the yellow school bus (not a short one, thank you) to the start. Very nice. Easy to get in the parking lot, easy to get on the bus and nice transportation to the start. Nice job Rodeo folks.
Got to hang with Lance, Steve S. and Steve B. before the race. If you can't have fun with those guys, well, you just need to hang out with them and see how much fun it is.
Also saw Erica, Cassie, Jen and probably someone else I'm forgetting before the race.
Brazoria County area runners that I saw were Bill O'Neill and wife, Bob Bowden and Lenord Burns.
Also saw the fleet-footed Bonnie Jo Barron.
Me, Steve, Steve and Lance went for a warm-up run together before the race. We went a street over and as we were trying to dodge the horse feces in the street, Steve S. suggested we run in the parking garage across the street.
I said, "Sounds great, I really need to pee."
He said something about the Seinfeld episode in which Jerry and George both got arrested for peeing in a parking garage.
We ran a few minutes, had a nice chat, and well....we may have peed in the parking garage but I'm not telling for sure.
Though I will say I kept looking over my shoulder while I was standing near the wall. I kept expecting a tap on the shoulder. I was wondering what my story would be. Something like "It's my parents anniversary, I lost my car and my father was once in a Red Chinese prison." Or maybe "I have urimysotosis (like i know how to spell a made-up word)."
I was relieved to have the warm-up over with.
We chatted and stretched and stuff and watched intently as another couple stretched near us. You had to be there to believe how she helped him warm up.
I looked for the Webb's (friends that drove down from Lufkin) before the race and didn't see them until Jennifer and Jeremy found me near the front a few minutes before the start.
I'd told Jeremy earlier in the week that I was planning on running 6:30 miles for as long as I could. He said he wanted to hang with me the first two miles.
It only took me 15 seconds to get to the start and I felt good immediately. I settled into a nice pace and didn't have to maneuver too much in and out of traffic. That was nice.
I could see Lance up ahead of me and Bob Bowden. I talked to Bill and said something like, "Great, Bob's already leaving me. What's he trying to run today?" Bill said, "He said he was gonna run 42." I said, "Sounds good, gonna see if I can catch him."
I took off.
I think I passed him before mile 1, but not sure.
I passed the one mile mark in 6:30. Missed hitting my watch for the split by 8 seconds, but that's okay.
Mile 2 was fine. Maintained my pace well. I was right at 13 minutes at mile 2.
Then the wind got to me. And the rain. And the wind. Then more rain. Then the inclines. UGH!!!!
I slowed considerably. About 30 seconds per mile.
I started wondering when we were ever gonna turn around and get away from the wind. We took a couple of turns and it seemed to get worse. Just great.
Between miles 4 and 5 I really began to wonder what I had in me for the day. But I kept plugging along. Kept going.
Then back to the bridge over the Elysian Viaduct, this time with the wind behind me. Better.
I felt good. I got to mile 6 and knew I had a shot at 41-something.
I decided to go. I'm not gonna miss it because I don't try. I'm giving it my best shot. If I crash before I get there, at least I know I tried. No taking it easy.
Going up the last incline, my left shoelace came untied. I briefly thought maybe I should tie it, but then I thought "I know it's untied, just don't trip on it." Then I said to myself, "EQ, don't stop and tie it. It'll cost you 15 seconds, plus if you stop on this incline, you'll never get your pace back."
So I kept going. It's not like I'm some god or something because I kept running with a shoelace untied. It's not like I sprained an ankle and kept running. But it was irritating. It kept slapping the other leg. Like a little mini-whip. Maybe I should do that more often because I ran a 6:27 mile 6. Like a jockey whipping his horse. Only my shoe lace whipping my legs to run faster.
Okay, enough about me running with my own personal mini-spanking machine.
There was a couple guys running near me, and we kept passing each other. I passed mile 6 in 40-something and I knew I had a shot at finishing in the 41s.
I picked up the pace a little and on the last turn I saw the clock read 41:???. I took off. I didn't know I had that much left in me. I passed two guys. I was really surprised I was running that fast. It felt good.
My clock time was under 42 minutes. My watch time was 41:44. A PR by 57 seconds.
Official time as posted this afternoon is 41:42. Coming into this year my 10K PR was 43:15, I beat that last month with a 42:41 and beat that by almost a minute today.
Goal was to finish in 41-something. Ultimate goal would've been to run 40:40 since today's my 40th birthday.
Post-race was cool. Got to hang with Jessica, Cassie, Jen, Erica, the Webb's, Lance, Steve and Steve. Saw Bob, Bonnie Jo and others I can't remember right now.
It got cold but it was lots of fun.
I'm telling you I was worried a little about how the day would turn out (given all the stuff from earlier in the week), but it was great. Reminded me of why I got involved in this runnin', bloggin' group to start with.
If my birthday ended right now, I've had enough fun.
The splits, according to Timex Ironman watch (Pedro's for training):
mile 1 -6:30
mile 2- 6:29
mile 3 - 7:00
mile 4 - 6:56
mile 5 - 7:08
mile 6 - 6:27
last .2 - 1:14 (6:10 pace)