I know this is only a 5K and I have the reputation of being a long distance runner, but it worked for my schedule. I have been only running solid for the last two weeks as I have been concentrating on cycling more over the summer. I would have much rather been doing Do-Wacka-Do or Flatrock last Saturday, but the 5K was in the cards. I am going to concentrate on some shorter, faster races in hopes of going sub-60 in the Tulsa Run. That may be a stretch, but it is worth a shot.
We were greeted with beautiful lower 60 degree weather early in the morning. We grabbed a front row parking spot in the Mabee Center at ORU and started to set up for the day and I do mean day. My race started st 7:45, but they had an untimed 5K after ours, a Survivor's walk, and later a 1 mile fun run. So basically, we were trapped until after the 1 mile run, unless I didn't get an award and we could leave early. All the races start on 81st St. and we were facing the road for all the action. After the mandatory 500th last port-a-potty trip, it was time to start warming up.
I have not done a local 5K in awhile and it looked like the usual suspects were out. A lot of runners here in town do all the local races and you can expect them to show, but this race was huge. I heard on the radio Thursday, that they had 12 -13,000 people signed up for all the races. My work, Bank of Oklahoma, had a team and I was a part of it. My race ended up with around 2,000 runners.
You can see that it was cool out as I had a jacket on to warm up. I always love how most all of the faster runners go up and down from the start warming up and doing some sprints. It reminds me of some form of animalistic mating ritual. Like strutting peacocks.
At 7:45 we were off. One mild complaint about the start, if you are going to use an announcer to start the race, just make sure that the speakers are pointed towards the runners, so they can hear the instructions and the start. Just a thought.
We headed down 81st to turn onto Riverside to head north to a little bridge, turn around and head south to about 86th St., turn around and then back North on Riverside to 81st and to the finish. The course is pretty much flat and a good one to run fast.
As usual, I started out really fast and then try to hang on for dear life. I head out and hit the first mile in 5:59. About this time we turned and I could see who was behind me at this point. I saw Scott Ostrem and knew he would be coming after me. He is in my age group and would be challenging me for an award. One good thing about Triathlons is they write your age on the back of your calve, so you can see who is in your age group. Maybe a thought for running races?
I felt good at this point and managed to hit mile two at 6:14. A little slower, but still good. At close to 3K, Scott passed me, but I managed to stay with him to the turnaround and then he started to pull away. In between mile 2 & 3 is where I really started to feel the Hang On For Dear Life Syndrome. I turned the corner onto 81st and it is a flat, straight shot to the finish. I tried really hard to maintain my arm swing and keep my turnover up. I went through mile 3 in 6:25 and finished in 19:21. Good enough for 27th male and 2nd in my age group.
While I am talking about age groups, when they finally posted the results, my age group was 44-47, not the standard 5 year age groups. It wouldn't have mattered as I would have still got an award for the 40-44, but I have not seen this before and I have done a lot of races.
After the race, it was time to walk around and get something to drink and eat and take in the festivities. Re/Max brought out one of their hot air balloons.
After walking around for quite some time, I finally located the tent where the goodies were. It was hard to find where to go, but once you got there, they had quite a bit of stuff. Whenever I just finish a race, I cannot eat and just look for something to drink. I have learned though to grab whatever I want for later as it may not be there. I will say for this race, they had plenty of stuff and did not even run out of water. Pretty impressive for such a large turn out.
I just had to throw this picture in. This is one of Tulsa's finest motorcycle Cop's ride. A six speed Harley Davidson. They have always said that after God created the Harley-Davidson, he rested.
The start of the 1 mile fun was delayed as somebody got in an accident on Lewis and they had to clean it up before they could start. Really?
Once they did take off, I did not think it was ever going to end. It looked worse than a Marathon. I don't know how many people were in this race, but it was huge.
Here is the mass still coming at us.
After it was all said and done, it was time to get my award. One complaint here. I am not for sure who timed the race, but to wait 2 hrs. to see if you got an award is ridiculous. A lot of people took off because they got tired of waiting. I am stubborn, so I wasn't going anywhere until I saw the results. I finished my race at 8:04 and they did not post anything until 10 AM. I have seen Ultra finishes posted faster.
After all that, I did manage to get my award. Pretty cool looking.
Overall, I am glad I did the race and I am happy with my time. To run a 19:21 on only 2 weeks of training, I am pretty pleased with the result. With another solid month of training. I will be even faster and hopefully fast enough to make my goal.
I am pretty sure I will do the Zoo Run 10K this Saturday and I may even do the Mother Road 1/2 Marathon the following weekend. I will probably then lay low until the Tulsa Run. Then it will be time to get ready for the Route 66 Marathon. I have done the race every year they have had it, so why stop now. The results of the Race for the Cure can be found here.