3.1 mi. I felt good about this race, not PR type of good but I knew cooler weather and no big winds from the Northeast would make today favorable for good times. I brought Austin and Anita in my car from the bank parking lot on Northlake. We parked and arrived early, most runners weren’t there yet, the walkers were still sleeping. It seemed like fewer people around, more vendor tents, and less decorated porta-pottys than I remember. The Breakers and Biltmore towers were lit pink, as was the new Okeechobee bridge leading to Palm Beach. Susan Komen’s sister, the originator of the event was in attendance, she helped launch the year’s first big RFC race. Dave Ragsdale did the announcing, and I was glad the women’s race was separate so I could see the whole thing before running the men’s race. Linda won, Erica behind by only 10-12 seconds, Kara Weber 4th, all over 19 minutes. I thought the female winner would be in the 18s, not taking from the efforts of our local good runners, but it seemed a race of this size would attract some high school or top college girls with faster 5k times. Men’s race was John Reback running the shoulder of a young high school kid and out-sprinting him at the end. My time was 19:21, good for low training I put in as always after holidays and my lost early season focus. I ran with Dave Garfield and Perry for a mile, then kept my pace around 6:10-6:15. At mile 2 I felt the energy drain and my heart rate increase. I didn’t see too many people I knew during the race, I was concentrating on running the course efficiently and keeping pace. At the overpass, I contemplated walking but that never materializes – thankfully! Still seeing the clock at 18:30 near the start line menas I’d definitely finish in the 19s. I didn’t have enough to increase my speed in the final 1/2 mile, just keeping my pace (that was falling away) was work. I saw the luluemon girls meters from the finish, and felt really good and out of breath to finish. I didn’t take water at any of the stops this race. I ate a gel before I started, though.
Each year I say I’d like to finish really well at this event, but I don’t back it up with training and a commitment.