May 302010

by Kevin Robinson

Kev Jr 25K (866)

Mike 25K (698)

Kev Sr 25K

I can’t say I am overly happy with my performance at the Pineland Challenge 25K Sunday. It was one of those races where you sit back and wonder what the heck happened.

That being said, I had a great time! The event, the atmosphere, the attention to detail…..all top notch as usual. I can’t imagine anyone going to the Pineland Festival and not having a fantastic experience.

Ian, Erik and all the volunteers had one mindset, put on an event for all the people, not just the runners but their families and all who wander in, Including an event for the family dog (Especially special because dogs are not allowed on campass)

I even got a pretty good compliment, when I finished the race I was tired, beat and disappointed, so of course the first place I went to was the beer stand. Smuttynose was there and when I stepped up for my beer the attendant asked me if I ran the race (because if not you are expected to pay) well I looked at my running com padre, down at my sweat soaked clothes and we both laughed.

As bad as I felt and probably looked, I was surprised by the question, then my friend mentioned that apparently I looked so bad that the guy could tell I spent a large part of the time walking…..we both laughed even harder…..OK, so I guess technically I didn’t RUN the whole race…The Smuttynose hit the spot and I felt much better.

Sometimes you just don’t have a good day and I suspect this was one of those days. I know I prepared and trained right and I have the stats to prove it. I even ran a semi race pace run on this very course a week ago and was so happy with my pace, stamina and post run energy that I figured I would be able to pace my friend and still crush my previous PR.

My race strategy was really fairly simple. On my practice race pace run, I split into three segments. I ran 14 miles so I had two five mile and one four mile split. I ran the whole way including all hills. My heart rate was very consistent even though I sped up throughout the run.

My splits and heart rate are as follows:
1st 5 miles…..145avHR–158max(10:33 pace)
2nd 5 miles…..144avHR–158max(10:02 pace)
last 4 miles….154avHR–161max(9:55 pace)

Now judging by that run, I ran 144 average HR which is 85% of my max. My peak during the run (not counting the kick)was 158(90% of HR) and I ran negative splits overall.

My plan for the race was to run slower the first 10 miles, because I was pacing a friend and then speed up and race the last 5.5 miles. I was looking to run in the 11s for the first ten then 9s for the rest. My race pace run more than supported my plan and actually would make one think that I could pull off low 9s and finish with an easy 10:30 average.

It sure looked good on paper but I failed to follow that plan and not only messed up my friends race but also my own. Somehow I didn’t do a very good job of slowing my partner down and actually pushed the pace myself a few times. Because of that we ran an average of 10:39 for the first 5 miles with two of those miles being in the mid 9s.

We started out too fast, that combined with the heat and inadequate fueling caused
a positive split race with a discouraging and painful finish. I was plagued with leg cramps during the last five and ended up walking alot. I actually felt better during my 50K finish last year and walked considerably less.

I suspect there are other factors involved here, perhaps an over training issue and/or poor fueling because my heart rate does not mirror my performance. This causes me to re-think my approach to the Mt Washington race.

Race splits:

1st 5 miles…147avHR–156max (10:35 pace)fastest 9:38, slowest 12:16
2nd 5 miles…143avHR–153max (12:27 pace) fastest 11:44, slowest 13:22
3rd 5 miles…144avHR–153max (13:03 pace) fastest 10:49, slowest 13:53
last .5 mi….152avHR–167max (12:43 pace & 8:10kick)

Total 15.38 miles (according to Garmen) @3:04:44 (11:55 PACE)

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