Sunday, March 09, 2008

I'll get him at Cherry Blossom

It was freezing out there this morning. I was shivering and had trouble keeping my arms still enough to pin on my number. I felt a little better after warming up for 2.5 miles, but damn it was cold. The wind was 20 mph sustained and temps were in the 20's.

I chatted with a young guy who was wearing the same half marathon cap as I was. He was planning on running 6:40's. Perfect. I was hoping to break 33 (6:38) pace. After the start, I realized I couldn't keep up with him so I let him drift ahead of me. I hit mile 1 at 6:39. Perfect. The garmin was reading 6:33 pace which is just about the 5 seconds differential I expect in a race. (I also actually hit my watch a few seconds before the start line.)

I found a nice big guy to draft off in the second mile. The second mile was 6:14? The mile marker had to be short. The garmin was reading about 6:29. The big guy pulled away. He was speeding up and the garmin was at about 6:30. I never saw mile 3.

At a turnaround, a volunteer saw "you can't the mayor beat you." Damn, he's ahead. I felt really strong and still kept the garmin solidly at 6:33 despite running by myself back up Pennsylvania Avenue straight into the wind. I passed a number of people but still couldn't see the mayor. I crossed a white line on the ground and looked at a blown over sign -- must have been the 4 mile marker. I had plenty in the tank and kept chugging away. In the final straight away a couple of girls and a couple of guys pass me. I felt great, but I just have no wheels. I'm near the finish where the streets lined with barricades. I hear the announcer, "Congratulations on a great finish Mayor Fenty!" Crap. I crossed the line with the clock reading 32:45. Nice PR, but the mayor got away. I saw the mayor with his foot on a chair, removing his chip. I shook his hand and said, "I had one goal, which was to beat you. You got me."

Fenty ran 1:08:47 at Cherry Blossom last year. I think I can take him.

The week:

Mo - 6.21/9:01/146 - wt: 162.1
Tu - 10.2 miles w/ 6 x hills- wt: 162.0
We - 6.14/8:49/145
Th - 14.03/8:19/152 w/ last 5 at MP- wt: 161.1
Fr - 6.18/8:59/141
Sa - 6.34/6:44/153 - wt: 162.0 - HR always high in afternoon
Su - 2.72/8:56 w/up, 8K race in 32:45

totals: 57.0/8:33/153

4 comments:

Mindi said...

NICE! Congrats on a sweet PR. And yeah, you'll have to take the mayor at the next one. ;)

Joseph P. Wood said...

Oh, I agree w/ Mindi, you'll get him on the longer race, especially with the volume you've been putting in recently. He might have more "natural" speed, but a 10 miler is a different animal than a 8k. Congrats on the PR!

Joseph P. Wood said...

PS: You're getting faster--per my last comment on a previous post.

Greg said...

Mindi, Joseph,

Thanks for the kind words. I'm pretty excited by Cherry Blossom, especially since I should get to start in the first wave (cut off was 1:12 last year). The mayor is going to be tough though. He actually ran 32:19. How many big city mayors can run 6:30s for 8k?