Saturday, May 9, 2015
Apple Blossom 5K -- May 9, 2015
So with Matt finishing his first year of college at Benedictine University on Friday, and Kevin staying with me this weekend, and not having a track meet, I floated the idea to the both of them to run the Apple Blossom 5K, and they were on board from the start!
Also running the race was Matt's roommate, Matt Gray. They run track and cross country at BU together, and Matt Gray grew up in Bartlett and won the Apple Blossom two years ago. To make things even more confusing, Matt Gray brought two more Matt's with him...one of the Matts goes to Iowa State and the other attends Marquette.
Whew! Anyway, my Matt and Matt Gray were supposed to meet near the Bartlett Library about 40 minutes before the start to stretch and get warm, but I was running a bit tardy and by the time we had made the 10-minute walk from home Matt was nowhere to be found. That's OK, we had a bib issue we had to fix, somehow Matt was in the computer as a 14-year-old girl! Not good.
As we were standing and waiting for the race to start, Kevin told me he wanted to run hard and run for time! OK dude! That left me in a bit of a quandary, because I was planning on just running for fun so I didn't spend as much time getting warmed up and stuff as I would for a PR-type run. Oh well.
Matt was lined up at the front, of course, and Kev and I were lined up together, but once the race started he was on his way! I tried to find a pace that was kind of comfortable, and a nice downhill helped me get settled in.
(Beware: A Runtastic mention is coming.)
As I got going, I found yet another asset of having my Runtastic app running -- a real-time look at my pace! That was a big help, as one of my problems is that I tend to go out way too fast and just try to hang on the rest of the way. I found myself feeling good at about a 9:05 pace, so I just focused on holding that for as long as I could. I could see Kevin up ahead in his bright neon shirt, and it seemed like he was pacing himself well too.
I hit the first mile in 9:05, and was starting to realize just how humid it was! The temperature was OK, it was about 60 degrees, but it had rained most of the night and was just sticky, with the humidity hanging around 92 percent. Doing a little bit of mental math, I figured that if I could only hold that pace, a finish of around 28 minutes was a possibility, so I just tried to focus forward on that.
The course meanders through some neighborhoods, and just before the two-mile mark has an interesting stretch where we run across the grass and connect to a running path. The rain made it a bit treacherous as the water had settled in a low point and the ground was super soft. I navigated that without falling, so I felt I had that going for me!
A little further down the path I caught up with Kevin. Even though he was starting to slow down I was really proud of him. As I passed by him I gave him a pat on the back and gave him some words of encouragement. What I didn't know until later is that not long after I got by him he picked up his pace again and had a really good finish.
In the final stretch of the race I was really gassed! I hit the third mile in 9:07 (27:07 overall) and despite the encouragement from Darcy I couldn't break 28 minutes, hitting the line at exactly 28:00! Actually since the race was done by gun time my official finish time was 28:11, good for 102nd place, with Kevin coming in 103rd in 28:17.
With both of the boys training for their cross country seasons in the fall, there will be plenty more opportunities to run some more races together. I'm looking forward to picking a few out and doing this again!
Posted by Mike Knapp at 11:22 PM