Seebo's Run

A running commentary on my training and whatever else emerges from that.

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Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Old & In the Way - PDR 2005

Before I give the usual race report, I'll put folks at ease and assure you I won't do any whining. I had the race I wanted to run in Virginia Beach.

Weather was beautiful, race was well organized, hit the toilet at home and parked on 31st St. right across the bridge from the Art Museum. C, my #1 fan, was back in my corner after being absent for the last few races. Pre race prep was like a social hour, chatting with all sorts of folks including the mates on my masters team - Old & In the Way - including my buddies KF and MM, English Mike from PhillyRunners, and CN, whom I enlisted from the Bryn Mawr club to fill out the roster.

Gun went off and we headed down the Ben Franklin Parkway into Center City. I cut myself a break and followed out RM, who is about my speed and age, and another Bryn Mawr runner I didn't know, which saved me from having to think during the usual waltz around and between folks in the first mile. I missed the mile 1 marker and ran past SC, who is one of about 20 folks who has run in all 24 PDRs. Mile 2 passes in 11:46 and I pull ahead of RM to take up pacing chores and that is the last I see of him. Mile 3 split was 5:49, and I was already 25 seconds ahead of where I was in the R&R half two weeks ago. Looping through Center City and back up the BF Parkway and onto MLK, miles 4, 5, & 6 pass in 5:45, 5:48, and 5:51. The 10k checkpoint passes in 36:17, and I note with some satisfaction that this is only 7 seconds slower than my Stone Harbor 10k time 3 weeks ago.

Each of the subsequent miles put more seconds in the bank - mile 7 in 5:55 and mile 8 in 5:54. Mile 9 had the only "hill" on the course, the stretch leading up to the Falls River Bridge and I knew if I was going to slow down it would be here. I chugged up it, past the bagpipe player on the bridge, and onto Kelly Drive for a 5:59 split. Now I could concentrate on finishing strong. About four or five of us dueled through parts of of the last four miles, but I didn't pick up the pace. Miles 10 (5:58 for a 58:48 10 mile time), 11 (5:56), and 12 (5:48) went by and I realized I had a shot at breaking 1:17. Couldn't or wouldn't speed it up any faster as mile 13 went by in 5:58 and the finish clock loomed closer, telling me my time would be in the 1:17's. This daze was interrupted by some guy with a Central Park Track Club singlet blowing by me, and my reaction was "oh no you don't" and I sprinted back by him and across the finish. 1:17:05 chip time.

This was a big finish for me. 2 1/2 minutes faster than the R&R half 2 weeks ago and my pace back under 6 minutes. The final sprint amazed me and I realized I had the reserves to have gone under 1:17. But instead of crying over this it just tells me what I'm capable of this season. I spent much of the race thinking defensively, with each mile under 6 minutes being one more mile less in which I could potentially crash. Now I know I can go faster and this sets up the rest of my season.

I finished 90th overall and 5th in my age group, which qualifies me for some shwag if the awards go 5 deep. Old & In the Way finished 3rd among the masters teams, which also may bring us some shwag.

Seems like folks either did very well or very poorly. Deena Kastor set an American women's record, and the male master's record was also broken. KF did nicely at 1:19, MM finished in about 1:33 which he wasn't happy about but I was, considering this was his longest run since coming off foot surgery earlier this year. CN finished in 1:36 and English Mike was a bit disappointed with his three times - his gun time, chip time, and shit time, as he was waylaid for a few minutes at a porta potty. Seems like the porta potties should be fitted with a device that deducts the time spent in them from your finishing time.

I see from the race results that the Atlanta Track club masters men beat us for second, which interested me as I recognized the name (and the age matches) of a guy with whom I ran cross country the one year I ran at Grinnell. Small world, but I didn't see him (nor would I likely have recognized him) at the race. I did see a ton of folks after the race, and really felt us local runners to be a community.

As always, C cheered loudly and lustily, and managed to do so from several points in the course. Also got a boost from the reclusive RB, whom I haven't seen since last year but who gave me a shout from two points in the course.

In contrast to the Rock n Roll marathons that Elite Racing puts on, the PDR this year had chamber music, jazz and other less conventional music groups on the course. A nice touch, but I would have preferred the Rocky theme.

Lots of other stuff to comment on, but its late. I've really felt good about this race all day, which is rare especially since I didn't PR. Next up is the Parkway Run 5k next weekend, in which the team I ran on last year "Easy on the Eyes" will defend our title. Much is at stake here, as first team prize is free lunch at the Four Seasons, which is easily the most enjoyable thing I've ever won in my running career. It also gives me a chance to really air it out and see how fast I can go.


Blogger ian said...

Great job! I knew the guy that ran RNR wasn't the real Seebo.
Let's bring it at the Parkway Run...

8:40 AM  

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