Several months have passed since the Eugene Marathon in April. Since then I have been recovering from injury and running almost exclusively easy/recovery, with a grand total of (maybe) 4 miles of Tempo-paced running (total), over the last 3 months, no interval training, some strides.
It's been over a year since I ran a 5k.
Did I expect a PR? No.
I set some low expectations for myself and had a great time beating them!
My goal was really just to have fun and get a baseline idea of where to place my training goals for the 5k.
At 8:59 we lined up behind orange cones on the paved road. I didn't push to be up front this time, since I tend to go out too hard. It was the first time I have seen a race start with a rifle! That's Douglas County for you. :)
Moments later we were racing up a scenic rural road along South Myrtle Creek. After a bit my Garmin settled in on a sub six pace and I let the young guys ahead of me go. It would be fun to see who, if any, could maintain the pace. One was wearing an CC uniform. I did my best to keep them in sight and managed to for most of the race, though the fastest two were well ahead at the end.
After mile 1 we turned around and went through a covered bridge. In a few steps we began the long, steady, slightly uphill.
|Photo of Neal Lane bridge from www.oregon.com|
I heard them closing in, but as they did, we hit some downhill and I had the reserve to kick it up a notch, (unlike at the Prefontaine).
Although my paces were fading, it didn't feel that way. Given the uphill, it seems a pretty even effort in retrospect. In all of this, I kept waiting for my legs to die. But they didn't. The limiting factor was oxygen, and I will enjoy working on that part.
We turned left and I kept thinking to myself..man this is a long mile! The fastest men were way head now, but I was still trying to use them to "pull me" uphill to the next turn. When I reached the corner it was all downhill to the finish chute. People were cheering and I got to "break the tape" for the first time since I have started racing... So did a lot of other people :)
There was a good crowd at the end cheering on all of the racers, including this 4 year-old who finished in 28:40!
|No stopping this guy! He invited me to a BBQ at his house after the race- but I had to drive home. :) Next year I will bring my boys! photo by Karlie Westbrooks|
The race measured a little short by about 30 yards. I don't know if that has anything to do with the covered bridge, but I was running the tangents as much as possible and crossed the center line in the road a few times (But I stayed on course! I promise!!).
The awards ceremony started on time and there were some unique trophies! There was also a prize raffle and I won a 10$ gift certificate to the town's dollar store. The local businesses were very generous and donated some great prizes. There were a lot of winners!
|photo by Karlie Westbrooks|
Ah...I think I am going to like the 5k. :)
- Stats: 4/103, 1F, 20:07 official (my watch said 20:10)
- Cost: 20$ day of race, less & with tech shirt if registered early - Benefit to the Myrtle Creek pool
- Pre-race: 2 protein/oatmeal breakfast cookies & coffee & also drive through mocha at Cowgirl's in Sutherlin (all before 7:45). 1 mile warm-up w/ a few strides and drills. Got lost, and followed the sheep to the start.
- Bathrooms: in the fitness center at the finish line, porta-potties at the start and within a half mile at Mill park. I am not sure about along the course, as I was not looking for them.
- Water stations: at the finish line
- Great volunteer support! Marshals at every turn/intersection.
- Awards/prizes: Ribbons 3 deep in each 10-year age group, "trophies" for overall winners M/F
- Post race: bagels, bananas, bottled water
- Extra you might like to know if considering this race: Scenic course and in a hilly, rugged part of southern Oregon. Myrtle Creek is a friendly community and a great destination for hunting, fishing, and camping. The festival included a parade which started at the end of the race.