Sunday, March 14, 2010

Kings Park 15K

I ran the King's Park 15K race yesterday.

I woke to the sound of wind and rain just before 6. I stayed warm under the covers for 15 minutes (not a recommended success habit). I packed warm clothes to change into. For the run, I wore a long sleeve tech tee shirt that I got at the NY marathon. People who run like to wear clothes from other races - sort of a camaraderie thing. I also wore nylon sweat pants, thin gloves and a running hat.

The sign in was in a school auditorium about a 2-3 minute walk from the parking. Enough to soak my jacket through which I would be leaving behind. The time before the race always has an air of nervousness combined with chat with other runners (most of which look in way better shape than me).

I stayed inside up to what I thought was the last moment before heading to the start line. The rain was cold and I was getting chilled (the car said it was 6 degrees C when I arrived). At least the mass of people kept the wind down. The 3 minutes before the start, they announced a 3 minute warning to which most runners groaned - just wanting to get started.

Then the start. I did not hear the gun or horn but just saw people starting to run - perhaps a better word is jog since the mass of runners made it tough to really run.

There was no starting mat for the chip timers on our shoes. I prefer the mats because it levels the playing field regardless of how long it takes to cross the start line. And in a race like this with several hundred runners, it can take a while to cross the start line. I think it took me about 20 seconds.

The race started out downhill but within a few hundred meters soon became an aggressive uphill run. Hill after hill. For the first 2 miles, I fairly successfully dodged the puddles but by 2 miles, my shoes were soaked anyways so I became less particular.

By this time, I was no longer cold (although I was not hot). I prefer running when it is a bit cool (sure beats the heat by a long shot). My shirt was soaked through. I was also finding my stride. My time at 2 miles was 16:24 - fairly good considering the crowds, hills and start line.

I skipped the first 2 water stops. I just did not feel thirsty.

The run took us into the old Kings Park Sanatorium and I had the thought that perhaps this run was just a ruse to make the crazy people like me run into the grounds so they could close the gates and re-open the facility. After all, it is a bit crazy to get up Saturday early to run in the rain.

At 10K, I was feeling good. I was at 52:04 at 10K (8:23 per mile pace) which is slower than I had hoped. So I picked it up a bit and finished the last 5 K in 25:45 (8:18 pace). So final time was 1:17:48. For every race (and many other things in life), I have 3 goals. My goals were - 1) to finish, 2) to beat 1:15 and 3) to beat 1:20. So 2 out of 3.

I was happy to see the finish line and get inside for some food and a change of clothes. I was pleased for having done it. And 15K is a great distance - more sensible than a marathon or even half marathon.

I won a $20 gift certificate to The Bake Shop (not due to my time - it was a draw prize). So I ended up the day with more calories in than out (another success habit I try to do is match my intake with my output)

With the time change and the race, I am feeling lazy today. Will need to change that...


At 11:47 AM, Anonymous Doug Gray said...


A wonderful accomplishment. As an adventure racer, I've found commitment to a goal can be as fulfilling as accomplishing the goal. Great job...and consider the calorie intake as your reward, not the gift certificate.


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