For the warmup, I ran most of the course -- call it 3 miles -- in 26'49'' including 2' @ LT and ~6 strides @5k.
I went out relaxed in the first mile and repassed a lot of people in the second half mile as the usual sprinters fell back. I hit the first mile at 6'19'' (which I was very happy with) and found myself alone. There was a pack maybe 200m ahead and I just decided to track them and pick off the stragglers. At the half point I heard 9'55'. Slowing down I guess.
I passed a bunch of people in the 2nd mile, but my split was 6'45''. What the #@$#@? I wouldn't have guess I slowed that much, but I guess so. I think running without the HRM cost me a little. I usually try to keep the needle above 190bpm in the second mile when my mind tends to wander. It was especially hard without anyone running my pace.
Soon after the 2nd mile I saw group of 3 high school kids (it was a booster event) passing a straggler who I though might be in my AG. I passed the straggler too and tried to reel the 3 kids in. I passed one pretty quickly and then right when I'm going by the others, a spectating coach yells "don't let him pass you" and one kid takes off putting 15-20m on me in an instant. With about a half mile to go I came up even on him and to his credit he stuck with me, so we were running shoulder-to-shoulder. I should have gone harder by him. I realized I'd never outkick him so I surged with ~400m left and put a pretty good gap I think. The race finishes on a track and with about 200m left, still pretty well ahead of him, I went into my "sprint." Well, he just blew my doors off and I finished 2-3m back. I went to shake his hand a couple of steps after the race and he was bending over, holding his shorts and couldn't talk. I felt kinda wimpy! Anyway, my watch says 20'20.8'' So much for the negative split I'd planned. 7'17'' last 1.1 (~6:34 pace). My 5k split at the Cherry Blossom 10 miler was 20:29! Last year my watch time was 19:44.
Anyway, I did a 23' cooldown. I felt surprisingly good and probably ran about 9:00 pace or better, making me think I really didn't give it my all. My right hamstring was a little sore, like it always is after a race, but nothing else. We'll call this 2.6 miles. So, 8.7 for the
I stuck around for the awards and actually won my age group (M35-39). It was a little embarrassing, but I'll take it -- $25 restaurant gift certificate and a little medal. Last year I was 35 secs faster and finished 3rd. You have to show up to win I guess! (It helped that 2nd overall was 39 and you can't double dip.)