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Friday, September 25, 2015

Rise 'N Shine Race Report 9-25-15

Well I showed up, this stuff of getting up a 4:30 AM (when I woke-up, couldn't get back to sleep), getting out of bed at 5:00 and on the road at 5:07 AM, just wasn't/isn't/ain't my cup of tea anymore.

Yeah, I got to the race with plenty of time to get my swag bag and number/chip and all that good stuff. At 6:00 I did a little over a mile to warm-up and it was a good thing, when I went by the bank on Outer Civic Center Drive it read 46* and a little breeze out of north.

NO COFFEE was the hardest part. hehehe

Oh well.

Let's get right to the race.

The executive summary version:

The Good

I ran in the race - you gotta show up
Nothing broke
Met my "A" goal of getting under 22:00 minutes
Age Group Award

The Bad

The Hyperspeeds suck when transitioning from wet grass, to tar.
The Hyperspeeds didn't like sharp corners in wet grass
The Hyperspeeds don't like running any quick uphills in wet grass
My hamstrings don't like to go fast after a mile. At that point running becames a tightrope act - go faster it hurts too much, go slower people pass me - I hate both.

What sucked

My calf compression sleeves ended up down around my ankles, so the compression part of those is pretty useless and more of a distraction when running than any placebo effect. Which means they are in the trash.

The long version

A new course for the Rise 'n Shine Race this year and registration took place at the YMCA instead of Kennebec Savings Bank. It was kind of nice to have the course without the hill in front of the Fire Station, but I have a feeling that today's course had its own slow spot, but we will get to that in a minute.

The start was good, but we crossed the ball field before the downhill hill to the rail trail. I had already run the start a couple of times and had a little adventure on the grass to tar transition, during warm-up. So I knew that my Hyperspeed's kind of sucked on the wet grass, but at the same time, I didn't want to get caught up in the bottle neck going down the hill, so I didn't go super fast, to start and held back, but at the same time I didn't waste anytime, getting across that grassy stretch.

Once we got around the corner on the hill, I did purposely pick the pace back up. Although I did get a little tangled up with a youngster runner who had started at the front and needed to do some fancy footwork to avoid running over him and not get tangled up with the runners beside me.

After that it was clear sailing, the volunteers at mile one said 6:33 as I passed which is pretty close to what my Garmin for a split 6:44 - a little off, but still right where I wanted to be.

Although, you can see I started to slow down a little just before that point.

That was when the hamstrings started to really bark at me. The rest of the race was a serious discussion between my wanting to go faster and the hamstrings telling me that would be a BIG F%$*&G MISTAKE. In fact if you don't slow down a little, there will be a problem with finishing this race.

Now this sucked big time because I was feeling GREAT otherwise, but it is what it is and so we walked that fine line the rest of the race. The hamstrings let me know when I needed to slow down and I kept pushing them to go faster.

Then I had added incentive to keep my butt moving.

When we turned around, I could see 3-4 gray-haired guys fairly close to me and knew that I might be in trouble, if I really wanted to cop an age group award, I couldn't let up very much.

After the .50 mile marker on the Rail Trail out the corner of my eye, I saw this gray-haired guy in the tie die shirt start to pass me. Nope wasn't going to let it happen easily, he was going to have to work a little harder for it. If the body could keep going along at a decent clip, I was going to keep going. I picked the pace back up and used him as motivation to keep pushing - I really wanted to win my age group this year.

I didn't look back, but I could hear the footsteps behind me and I figured it was him or one of the other gray hairs chasing me.

I kept running.

Going back up the hill wasn't too bad, but right at the top we had to make a sharp right turn onto the grass and go behind the YMCA.

Yeeeeaaapppeerrr that sucked.

I had to really slow down to make the corner and whenever I tried to really push off, there was just enough slippage that my Hammies were telling me, it was not a great idea Harold, keep that up and we won't be walking very well, much less running. Slow down and just go easily through this section.

Then going up the little and I do mean little rise towards the end of the grass, I thought I was doing a face-plant when my foot slipped out from under me. My hamstrings just said - "you dumb shit!" Once I got back on the tar I picked up the pace, but I had to back off again, I sort of thought that I might have done something bad there, but the hamstring loosened up enough to stop worrying too much, but I was a little concerned at this point.

Somehow or another we (my hamstrings and me) kept going fast enough that none of the other gray hairs passed us. There were people going by, but none of the ones that I cared about headed past me while I was figuring out if my left hamstring survived the almost face-planting.

I was glad, because if one had tried at that point, I have a feeling my hamstring might have really made my day miserable. You know that old competitiveness that rears its ugly head - yes I would have gone with someone with gray hair until I finished or broke something.

Once I got to top of Capitol Park, something in my Hamstring released and I was able to pick up the pace a little more until the end. Yeah a few runners went by me on the way to the finish line, but nobody with gray hair got up beside during the race to the finish.

Although Amy L. did go by me down on the Rail Trail and as bad as I wanted to keep up with her, once we got on the grass, she lost me and then pushed harder than I did the rest of the way. Someday I will catch her. :-)

When I crossed the line my watch said 21:47 and my official time ended up at 21:50 and 18 out ???

The reality is that

I didn't break anything - that was good, but the hamstrings were very glad to be done running at that speed, though they wouldn't be happy later.

Which meant that I got my "A" goal, not by a lot, but I did get it. When I was talking to some of the other runners, they were saying that they were thinking the course was about 30 seconds off their usual times for a 5K, so it wasn't as easy a course or fast as some are on the rail trail.

Age Group

None of the other gray haired gentlemen passed me, so I ended up with a 1st in my age group, which I secretly really wanted to do. I have run this race 3 times and won my age group in 2012, finished 2nd in 2013 when I was still recovering from my achilles and had real problems with my hamstrings, which didn't allow me go with the AG winner that year, with a couple of hundred yards left, in 2014 I didn't run and then this year.

Age 60-65 and 66-69 age group winners

Hyperspeed 6

Now the Hyperspeed's did really great on the dirt/tar sections of the race, but they didn't do so well on the wet grass or wet grass to tar transitions (they are a little slick feeling for a short ways on the tar). I still really like the shoes, but they showed their big weakness and now that they have a little wear on the outsole, I have a feeling that they will not be a secure ride in wet weather now. Which means that I might look else where for my next pair of race day shoes when I need another pair. However, they will still be great treadmill shoes, so I will get my money's worth out of them.

Compression Sleeves

My compression calf sleeves, ended up around my ankles when I was warming up and then again when I was running with Bennie later, which wasn't a good thing and a little distracting. Luckily they didn't during the race, but I was concerned about it at first and then forgot about it, when the hamstrings started barking. They will now head on down the road and I will go to using my compression socks.

I love it

The other part was getting to see some of the other local runner and gab for a few minutes.

Scott C. - remember the banana (an inside joke that Scott will laugh about)

Beth and someone's best side hehehehe

Overall, it was a good race and I did get my primary goals of sub 22:00 and an age group award.

I was happy with how I felt, except for the hammies and had some pop left that I couldn't really get into, because of how they were barking at me.

So I still have some room for improvement, which is a good thing for an old fart to keep reaching higher.

I really want to thank the organizers and volunteers at the Rise 'N Shine 5K, you put on a great race and even though it takes place at 0'Dark Thirty. I still had fun and have no real complaints about the race, just an old body that is starting to betray my pursuit of faster for me times.

Yes, I showed up and guess what - I had fun.

Yeah, Bennie and I ran 3+ miles after I got home and no the hammies were not impressed. They complained loudly about having to do this again, so soon after being severely abused earlier. Oh well, they got through it.

This post originally appeared on One Foot In Reality if you see it elsewhere, it has been used without permission, please go to my site to see the original post.


  1. So bummed they changed the course... it was such a classic and unique race.

  2. Yeah, as much as I hated the hill at the end, I think the old one might have a been faster. Wasn't a big fan of the grass sections with racing shoes on.


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