Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Flapjack & Jill 15K Race Report

Last Saturday was my last opportunity to race prior to the Cleveland Marathon. The 15K distance is long enough to challenge my endurance and yet short enough to allow me to see if I could muster up some speed. I've been feeling a little slower lately running many of my runs at marathon pace or slower. Coach said to go for it so I did my best. My thinking was to go out at around a 7:15-7:30 pace and I pretty much stuck to that with my first mile being a little faster and my last a little slower.

The Flapjack & Jill 15K took place in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park (CVNP) on the Towpath Trail. I love this section of the park and ran one of my first ever 20 milers on it years back so I was excited about the chance to do a race on this mostly flat, softer surface.


Steve and I got in a couple of easy miles to warm up before the race. It was a little cool at 50 degrees or so but I decided to race sans armwarmers as I figured I'd work up a sweat. We lined up around 8:00 and we were off.

The Start:

Race start I'm in the yellow hat and red shirt & steve is on my right
The start was fun as it started at the Stanford house and went straight down a little hill across the street onto a trail leading to the Towpath where we then took a right and ran toward the Ohio Turnpike Bridge. I started in the front next to Steve since it was a smaller race. One woman who ended up in second passed me right away and I just stuck to my pace.

The First 4-5 Miles:

Maybe another mile or two later another woman passed who ended up being the overall winner. We pretty much stayed in that position for a couple miles and then a couple other women passed. I just kept telling myself to stick to the pace. It's impossible to know whether they'll slow down or not later depending on their endurance and intensity. My hope was to at least place in the top three although I wasn't sure if that was going to happen.

The Back 4-5 Miles:

I did a gel around mile 5 at the water stop and kept steady (thanks for the race fuel Powerbar). I think one more more woman passed me here and she was in front of me the rest of the race just outside of my reach. I was feeling a little fatigued around miles 7-8 and my right calf was cramping up. I thought this might happen as it was a little achy following my Wednesday longer run. I just tried to maintain as I knew the finish wasn't too far off!

The Finish:

post race with my adorable & fast husband!
I enjoyed the finish. Running back up to the Stanford House there was the little hill but a lot of people cheering including my speedy husband. I finished a little slower than my goal time at 1:10:41 (7:36 pace) but was happy with the finish. I was 7th female and 3rd in the 35-39 age group. Both other women in my age group were within a minute of me and the woman who placed third was only 90 seconds ahead of me with an average 7:26 pace so it was a small but competitive womens' field.

Post Race & Closing Thoughts:

Steve had a great race and placed second overall so we headed out to Kent to visit Ray's Place for some post race celebratory IPAS and food.

It was a good day and we were lucky that the rain held out for the race. As usual Western Reserve Racing did a nice job with the event. There was an optional pancake breakfast after which we skipped and we received nice gender specific tech tees. I will definitely consider doing this one again - hopefully a little faster the next time! Next up is Cleveland in 10 days!

No comments:

Post a Comment