The second Trek the Trace took place on Tuesday night. The weather was a little cooler but the competition was much hotter. If you remember the challenge of the Trek the Trace is to project your 2 mile run time. I am horrible at pacing! Last week I guessed 15:00 minutes since my legs were lead and I wanted an easy run. I did run the first ¾ of a mile comfortably but I then picked up the pace. I don’t know why, it is just what I do. I finished the run last week in 13:19 or something like that – an eternity regarding my pacing.
This week Robin brought the high school track team. There are some blazing fast kids. Once again my legs were dead from the EPIC trainer ride that morning and the recovery run at lunch. I had told myself that I was going to run easy but I knew that I was lying to myself. Robin put down a time of 12:30 and I talked myself into pacing off him. There were a ton of people at this event. I staged myself near the front but there were so many people in front of me. We started off but I did not know where Robin was. It was a full quarter mile before I saw him running with one of the fast high school kids. He was about 20 feet in front of me at this point but there were about 8 kids right in front of me. I was running my own race and not jockey for position. The kids in front of me started to fade. I could hear their hard breathing becoming labored. They had gone out too fast and were blowing up! Maybe a little bit of experience would prevail. I swung around them and slowly paced all of them. There were still 3 or 4 people in front of me – Robin, Chad (who projected 11:30) and the high school phenom. We rounded the turn around – this is the hardest that I have ran in a long time.
Robin was leading Chad and I could not see the high school phenom. I continued to tough it out on the run. Since this is an out and back I got some encouragement from some of my friends as we turned home. They yelled encouragement like, “he is stalking you” and “don’t let the kid pass you." I heard these words as don’t punk out. I could hear someone closing. I picked the pace up and ran even harder. There was just 1200 more meters to go – In other words a lifetime of pain in front of me. One of the boys came up beside me and I increased my pace. I did not want him to pass me. We ran neck and neck forever, maybe 20 or 30 feet and I let him go. This was one of the kids that I had passed earlier. Running side by side I was blowing up. I still had a half mile to go. Unfortunately this was not the only kid who passed me. There were two more that powered through me. That is the gift of youth. These kids had un-blown-up. I can’t do that. If I tip my toe into the red zone too far there is no coming back – especially in a two mile all out run. But these kids can do it – they can un-blow-up. Wow.
When I crossed the finish line I was told that my time was 13:58 – WTF!!! @$#%$%$#. I had run twice as hard and finished 30 seconds slower than last week. Impossible! I may not pace well but I know what a 7 minute mile feels like and it is not this hard. The consensus of the finishers was that the time was wrong. It is not a big deal but I was a little bit disappointed. The timekeepers determined that the timing was off by two minutes. This put me at 11:58 for the two miles. That is a really good run for me – and on tired legs that is probably a little too good for. I talked with some of my friends and with the timing adjustment they all had significant PR’s. It was a good night – a little too good to be true. I think the adjustment was more between 1 minute and 1 and a half minutes. Next week we will do it all again and see where we really stand.
I was a little distraught after the race and ate a cookie. I still avoided all of the other food. It was a solid day. I had a great trainer ride in the AM. A 4 mile run plus some weight training at lunch. And then the Trek the Trace during the evening.