Monday, May 28, 2012

Novi Memorial Day 10k; Novi; 28h May 2012

I had to do a race as the 28th May 2012 is a year to the day since I first started running, but as it was Memorial Day, the pickings were slim, but this was close by and early in the morning, so just about ideal.

Packet pickup was a breeze, at a local gym. There was no line and also no pretense of an expo, just get your stuff and go, so no hassle there.

The forecast was for 'hot, damn hot', which is a technical term used by meteorologists the world over meaning 'very hot' and it did not disappoint. The course, basically, headed south and meandered through a few small subdivisions, in a series of small lollipops (ie, out and back the same direction). The heat became a major factor in the race very quickly, as did the hills, what an extremely hilly race, probably second only to the Milford 10k in nasty hilliness. Now 136 feet/ 41.5m of elevation gain/ loss, doesn't sound like much, but it was very nasty. I pretty much ran the whole race with one particular girl, I would overtake her on the hills, she would then pass me on the flat, she had more left in the gas tank at the end as she left me with a few hundred yards to go, I guess, but shook my hand a thanked me at the end, I suspect we helped pace each other. The 5k walkers were finishing at the same time and seemed to be struggling with the concept of  'get out of the bloody way'. In summary, 'I survived', I went home, worked in the garden, drank beer and watched the sun go down.

Results; 12/ 18 in my group, 59/ 129 overall isn't up to my usual but man it was crappy out there.

Garmin -

Endomondo -

White tech shirt, don't like white tech shirts...

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Mission 10k; Indian Springs Metropark; 12th May 2012

So I was looking for a race for this weekend and this one caught my attention, with this high pressure sales pitch;
You just ran 3.1 or 6.2 miles, you deserve a real trophy to declare to the world how awesome you are!  All registrants will receive a custom designed quality belt buckle! The buckles have a antique silver finish to show off the best race swag in the area!
Slowing down at the end and
coming downhill, so there
So how could I possibly resist? There was no pre race day packet pickup, it was just a matter of, get there before the race, grab your stuff, get in the zone and go for it. I got up around 6:30am, which is standard for me on race days. I strolled down to the local 7-11 for a couple of banana, hung around a bit and decided to just get on the road. I arrived at about 8:15am, 45 minutes before the race, the place was pretty quiet and it didn't ever really get busier. The race packet had the usual ads, etc, along with a free GU and the belt buckle. You also put your name into a draw for free goodies afterwards.

The starting line was quietest I have experienced and everyone was just kind of milling about, waiting. We got going and there was very few walkers, etc, for a wee change. We started down and nice big hill, which, due to this course being an 'out and back', turned into as ass kicker just before the end. The course meandered through the park, paved the whole way. It was very scenic and I will definitely be back to run and cycle the trails in the future. What with the field being so small, and the course meandering, there were times when I couldn't see either the person in front or the person behind, it was really quite surreal.

My belt buckle and medal (for coming 3 in my age group)
The heat and humidity were up there during the race and at no time did I ever really feel comfortable, you know, I didn't ever really get in the zone. I finished the race in a reasonable time, although I would have lied a PR, you can't have everything. There was a good selection of snack, banana, cookies, water, Gatorade, etc. I got a medal for coming second in my age group, which is quite impressive until you realize that there were only three people in my age group, and the top three got medals, ho hum. They gave away a very good selection of prizes everything from vouchers for free pizza to, gift cards to local stores and Road ID vouchers. All in all, it was a good start to my Saturday and I may even do it again next year. Incidentally they are also having a 15k race called the Sasquatch Shuffle on the Friday before Halloween, beginning at midnight, the way will be lit by glowsticks, etc, I'm almost intrigued enough to register, maybe.

Official results are in; second in my age group, of three, 11/37 overall. Let's just say it was a small race, but done very well.

Here is how the Garmin saw it -

Here is how Endomondo saw it -

Friday, May 4, 2012

All signed up for my first marathon - Ann Arbor Marathon, June 17th 2012

In the year 490 B.C.E., Miltiade, a Greek general from Athens inflicted a serious defeat on the Persians in the plains of Marathon, a small village in the northwest of Athens. In order the convey the news of the victory, a Greek soldier, Phidippides, ran at a stretch from the battlefield to Athens. After delivering the news, he collapsed and died.

I finally done, this is it, the big one, the one I've been building up to, I've signed up for my very first marathon. Yup, all 26 miles 385 yards of it, yup, that's 26.22 miles, yup, that's 42.195 kilometers. Yup, I'm running my first marathon in the inaugural Ann Arbor marathon (, as I thought that would be kind of apt. Unlike Phidippides, I'm planning on surviving enough to enjoy a few cold ones later in the day, while I rest my weary bones.

I'm hoping for a sub 4 hour finish, but who the hell knows. According to the various marathon finish time prediction sites, based on my 1:51:51 on the Let's Move half marathon, I should be able to drag my sorry self in around 3:55 hours, but really, who knows. I've also heard so much about the dreaded wall, so the wheels may completely fall off the bus. Most stuff I've read pretty much states that prediction sites are mostly low, but depending on what distance you base them off and how much practice you do previously, they get closer. This one is pretty cool and provides a whole lot of detail -