Saturday, March 27, 2010

St. Malachi 5 Mile race

I did something crazy: I went into 2 1/2 days of total fast to stop my weight gain and start a nice healthy diet. I stopped eating on Tuesday 3pm, and starting eating again on Friday. I have done one day fasts before, but this is the first time I went over. It felt pretty good actually. At no point did I feel hungry. The only reason I stopped the fast was that I wanted to eat something before the St. Malachi race :) Anyway, this morning I was 163.5 lbs, vs 171.5 on Sunday.

We got dressed (with my wife) and headed downtown. The weather was not great, with drizzling rain and 47F. St. Malachi is a large local race in downtown Cleveland, with over 2000 runners. For many runners it is the first race of the year. This was the first time for both of us doing this race. The main reason we did it is that it is part of the Hermes Road Racing series.

This picture, of Liz waiting in line at the porta potties, with a plastic garbage bag over her, I think clearly shows the kind of weather we were dealing with:

This was also the first time that I got overdressed for a race. I decided to leave my long pants on and two shirts, and ended up regretting it when I got really hot during the race.

Here is a picture of the crowds a short time before the start of the race:

The race started downhill. In the first mile mark my Garmin showed 6:20 pace but the race clock said 7:09. Well, lets call this a long mile. There is no way it took me 7:09 to complete the first mile.

The rest of the race I was trying to catch Mike George, fighting for the 175th place. I ended up finishing 2 seconds behind Mike, with a time of 35:42 (7:08 pace), 12/106 in my age group and 177/2150 overall.

My goal was 35 minutes (7 minute miles) so I went a bit slower than expected. My miles splits (from the Garmin): 6:20, 7:04, 7:22, 7:21, 7:27. I think I was a bit weak from the fast. I should normally have no problem running 7 minute miles during the entire race.

The East side running group had a very strong presence in this race, with Mark and Steve Godale, Kam Lee, Tracy Mader and Connie Gardner, all winning age group awards. Elizabeth was serving as a cheerleader on the sidelines.

I waited for Liz, who finished at 45:53 (9:09 pace) 8/40 in her age group. Here is a picture of her just before the finish line.  She is smiling just for this picture, but she was cursing the uphill finish (she confessed that she had to stop and walk):

Knowing that there was no chance for an award (2153 runners in this race), we grabbed something to eat and went home.

Overall, it was a good race, but I am not sure if we will do it again. My wife complained (among other things :)) about the condition of the roads, the slippery bridges, and the hills. I did not mind, but the wife is the boss :)

This was a 3rd race in 3 weeks. Time for some rest now.

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