Thursday, August 18, 2016

RACE REPORT: Ready for Fall 5K 2016 + RRCA National XC Championships

This year's 10th annual Ready for Fall 5K was extra special, because it doubled up as the Road Runner's Club of America's National XC Championships.  We were back at the Milliken Arboretum, with its excellent grassy course, and Brooks sponsoring with door prizes.  I recently moved to Charlotte, NC, but I was sure to come back to this great race, with its unique competition (lots of HS teams) and the opportunity to wear my XC spikes.

Training the week before:

Tuesday, July 9:
I did a 60 min bike session for 17.7 miles, which may be a record, at least in recent history, for me.  Watching Olympics swimming was really motivating, because most races are sprints, and everyone's cheering like crazy and pushing hard for the win.  My body felt recovered and fresh from the past weekend's Spartan Super Obstacle Course Race afterwards.

Wednesday, July 10:
70 minute strength session.  It had been a while since my last one (11 days, aside from the Spartan race), so my body was supercompensated and doing pretty well.
  • Ruck: 1 mile (20 lb of weights, plus other gear) round-trip to/from the gym.
  • Burpees: 65 at once (may be a record, vs. 50-ish)
  • Push-ups: 25+25 (not bad, given the burpees)
  • Squats: 115+100 (continuous is much harder than stopping for a second at the top)
  • Lunges: 75
  • Flutter Kicks: 50+40+55 (1-2-3-1 is 1)
  • Plank: 4+2.5+3 (4 may tie my record)
  • Sit-ups: 180+120+155 (doing well on this today)
I haven't been training for short distances (or training running in particular), so I didn't mind going hard on the strength session, potentially decreasing my performance in the XC race by a little.  My A-goal at this moment is to survive the upcoming Hurricane Heat 12 Hour Spartan event on August 20th, and strength is my biggest weakness (interesting statement).... I guess I should say lack of strength is my biggest weakness.

The Race:
Drove out to Spartanburg, got there early to get my preferred size shirt.  Relaxed in the car, solving a Geocaching puzzle.  Successful trip to the bathroom.  When time got close, I put on my spikes and did a warm-up.  I did not feel fresh during the warm-up... my body felt difficult to move, the way heat could make you feel... that, and muscles that aren't cooperating.  Could be a difficult run.  I had felt better the previous day.  Oh well.

 (the pain cave)

Since this was an XC Championship race, there were separate starts for the men and women, with women starting first at 8:30am.  Love XC starts, with the team spirit and excitement.  The race started, and off we went.  It starts on a wide field, with lots of room.  Once we get on the grassy trail, it does get somewhat crowded.  My pace from the start was good/usual for a 5K effort.  I settled in after the first mile and started to cruise.  By mile 1.5, I passed most of those who went out too fast.  Although, based on my splits of 7:14, 7:26, 7:39, and 0:37 for 0.1, I went out too fast, too.  But it was less crowded in the last 1.5 mi.  We had the small uphill towards the end, and that's when a young girl passed me.  I'm not good on hills, but I have a good kick.  In about 3 races, I was beat by youg'ins in the final sprint.  I saw that I had a chance, so I pushed really hard and redeemed myself this time.  Nothing wrong with getting beat by someone so young... it's more that the past times I've been beat, I felt like if I had pushed myself harder, I could've passed them, but I didn't push hard enough.  My time wasn't fast - 22:57 (7:24 ave), but I gave it what I had on the day, and had fun in the race, and had some redemption.  The girl did well, though, and is going to have a very bright future in running.  We pushed each other to do better.  The time was good for 2nd in my age group, which is cool, for a "National XC Championship" race, although I think I was one of two people in my age group, haha.

Afterwards, I got 2 geocaches in Spartanburg.  One was a multi on the Hub Love geotrail, which required quite a bit of driving.  The other was a regular sized one in the city, so I got to drop off two trackables and pick up one.  

1 comment:

lindsay said...

That shirt is cool! I'll have to remember to do this race next year... I didn't know you moved to Charlotte! :( I've been somewhat reading your posts but obviously slack in clicking through to comment. My bad. You've been busy with a million Spartan races! Thanks for not deleting me from your blog roll after all this time. Maybe I'll run into you at a SC or NC race soon. :)