O damn, first race of my life in altitude. For those of you have never experienced 5,000 ft or higher…it is a crazy feeling. Now if you hit that altitude and are not really doing anything active then you probably won’t notice anything.
Other then a subtle pressure on my chest I didn’t really notice it on my first easy 4 mile run at 7:30 pace, I didn’t really notice it on the next run when I did 10 miles closer to 7:00 pace. The first time I started to feel it was the day before the race when I dipped under 6:00 pace for my last mile. As you begin to push your body harder you’re expecting to take a deeper harder breath to fuel your muscles with Oxygen and it just doesn’t work the way you are expecting. When you attempt to take in that deeper breath there is a tightness in your chest that grows.
Time to race…The Road Runners Club of America (RRCA) brought their ringer out for the meet. Scott Bauhs (3:59 mile, 13:29 5k, 27:48 10K, and a 61 something 1/2 ) needless to say the boy is legit. Now neither one of us are really in good shape so we figured if we could run 5:00 pace for this race, it would be a good workout.
I won’t keep you in suspense…Scotty kicked my ass. There wasn’t really a race at all. We ran together for the first mile going out hard and slowing up to a 5:01 first mile. Then we turned right into the WIND…I figure caps will make the wind look more fierce. Mile number 2 was where Scotty just left me as I ran 5:27.
U Turn, now the wind was at our back again and I dropped back to a 5:09 for the third mile. I made sure to smile and give Scott the thumbs up as he passed me. I just could not stop smiling. My body was hurting but a ton of RRCA folks were cheering me on as I was passing them by. My legs felt OK but I just couldn’t dig deep for the O2 that I was used to.
The rest of the race/run came in at 5:17, 5:14, 6:19( 1.2 miles) = 32:29. All in all this was a great trip. We got to meet a bunch of club directors and catch up with some acquaintances that I only see at these running conventions. I was also able to meet Scott Bauhs, Howie Keflezighi and Meb Keflezighi.
I can’t wait to see how I feel when I get to Michigan and get on the track…