Race Report followed by seeking long run guidance.

Thursday was the Twin Cities 1 Mile. It was a large 1 mile race, almost 1,900 finishers. I really only signed up for the Corp. Challenge aspect…and the awesome Brooks T-shirt. I was super excited when I got there, I found parking like 2 blocks from the start at a meter on the street and it only cost me a quarter to park since those meters around the park are only enforced 8am – 6pm, I got there at 5:30’ish and it was only 50 cents an hour. Yay me!

I walked to the start and picked up my number and shirt. Then I went back to my car and got naked in the back seat…oh, you know you wanted to be there. I had to get out of those, ‘business casual’ clothes and get in more appropriate running attire. Since my ‘mass wave’ didn’t start until 6:50 I went for a little jog around MSP and the park where the start was, probably 4 miles. About 10 min before the start I was looking for a porta potty, but all of them had lines 50-100 people deep. I just started thinking, crap…do I duck in some trees and risk getting caught. The trees weren’t very thick and there were a ton of cops around. I decided to get in the starting chute and try not to think about it. Eventually the feeling to pee subsided and all the sudden the mass wave of people started slowly walking forward. Hmm, I didn’t hear the gun…oh well, lets go!

After about half a block (of pretty much walking) I had enough room to start hoping around people. Eventually I just started running on the boulevard next to the street for a few blocks. When I got to the half way point I was just started to settle in and get control of my asthmatic breathing. I looked up and the clock said about 4 min on the dot. Man, I feel like I’m going much faster than that. Ok, lets pick it up a little. As soon as I started going faster my lungs got tighter, STUPID asthma. I pushed on. I saw the finish line up ahead, but what the heck! Why are people slowing down to finish…the people that cut off your chip were not too far after the finish and with that many people doing a short race it is hard not to form a large line quickly. Oh well, I found some room in the middle of the road so I didn’t have to slow down much while I crossed the mat at 7:40 on the clock. My official time was 7:25. Not bad, but I should have been closer to 7:00. Overall I was 735th out of 1984, which puts me around the 37th percentile. Not bad, I’ll take that.


Ok, enough with the long race report about a 1 mile race. On to the seeking guidance part.

What do you do on a long run while running with a few other people and 1 person is having a bad run. Steph was having stomach pains and shorts chaffing (even though she Body Glided the crap out of their legs). She went out for a 5 mile run before picking up myself and Pharmie. Steph had to do 20 this week while I was doing 12 and the Pharmie was doing 15. Anyway, the run started out a little slow, probably an 11 pace. We stopped for water at mile 3 and so the Steph could eat some shot blocks. After we started going again Pharmie and I kept slowly pulling away and slowing down to wait for Steph. It was this way the whole run. The whole time I know it is making it harder on Steph because she is thinking about holding us up.

My question to you is, do you leave that person and get your good run in while you are feeling good and let them gut it out alone…or stick with them?

Second question…I’m training for my second half marathon and this Friday will be my last double digit run before the race. I would like to run with Steph again, but she needs to do 20 this week since she had to bail early because of her stomach pains. Do I do the second half of Steph’s 20 miler with her knowing it will be slower than I would want to go, or do I try to get in a hard 10 before my half at my goal pace?

Danielle in Iowa  – (May 12, 2008 at 11:03 PM)  

Hmmm, the long run question is an interesting one. If I am having a bad day, I actually prefer to run alone, but everyone is individual. And you have your own training agenda though, you gotta do what you gotta do. This is especially true if you are training for different distances. Could you do your 10 miler one day this weekend and then run like the last 5 miles at the slow pace? It can be a recovery run :-)

Stef  – (May 12, 2008 at 11:43 PM)  

Sounds like a fun race!!

As for running together, I'm not sure. Usually I'm one of the slower ones and I don't like to slow people down. Personally I have no problem starting with someone and having them pull away since everyone has his or her own training plan which it's important to stick with.

Great blog!

Formulaic  – (May 13, 2008 at 12:28 PM)  

The question is what does Steph do normally? SHe most likely runs alone most of the time anyways.

I try to stick to the warm up routine.

I run with the slowest person until I'm 'warmed-up'. Depending on the exercise this could be a long time or only a few minutes.

Then it's time to get your workout in at your pace.

Then to make it hard on you, you can always finish your exercise and then go back out there and finish with them.

Like taking a little extra 'cool down'.

Formulaic  – (May 13, 2008 at 12:28 PM)  

The question is what does Steph do normally? SHe most likely runs alone most of the time anyways.

I try to stick to the warm up routine.

I run with the slowest person until I'm 'warmed-up'. Depending on the exercise this could be a long time or only a few minutes.

Then it's time to get your workout in at your pace.

Then to make it hard on you, you can always finish your exercise and then go back out there and finish with them.

Like taking a little extra 'cool down'.

Colleen  – (May 13, 2008 at 9:02 PM)  

Congrats on the mile race - sounds like it was a lot of fun.

As for the advice - if I'm running and not feeling the best, I would rather have others go ahead. I feel worse if they stick around - like not only am I hurting but that I'm hurting their run too. I wouldn't be ashamed to say that you're feeling good and going to take off. As a runner, she should understand! Good luck - it's a hard position to be in!

IronJenny  – (May 14, 2008 at 2:07 PM)  

Great question - we have all been there pulling ahead or lagging behind on some days. I don't know Steph, but I wouldn't think her feelings would be hurt if you and Pharmie pulled ahead. Maybe just mention that you'll keep checking on her and looping back.
Great job on the one-miler! I will see you at TCM. ;-)

teacherwoman  – (May 15, 2008 at 9:20 PM)  

Nice job on the 1 miler!

As for the questions. I am sure she feels like she is holding you guys up. If I were her, I would tell you guys to go ahead without me. Maybe just mention it to her.

As for your last double digits run, I would probably opt to do it on your own ... that way you can DO what you want to do... and you will probably feel more ready for your race (mentally).

Good luck! :)

Molly  – (May 16, 2008 at 9:36 AM)  

did you know you had a fellow blogger out there? Danielle (see my side bar) was out there with you!
Sounds like fun.
No advice on the latter, from your perspective...I am the slow one. I will tell you I hate to think I am holding people back!
Take Care

Pharmie  – (May 16, 2008 at 12:05 PM)  

My advice? You don't leave someone unless you are told to leave. If they tell you to go on, then you have full permission. But hey, that's just how I roll. I've had plenty of bad runs myself and know that next time it very well could be me :)

Collin  – (May 22, 2008 at 8:20 AM)  

I'll post this before reading the other comments.

For me, the long run is all about the the distance, not the pace. Just log the miles and run as many of them as you can, working on your mental game, hydration, nutrition, etc.

First, I wouldn't have dropped a friend who was struggling unless she had insisted that I do so and was very persistent about it over the course of a couple of miles. And even then, unless I was being forced to walk it in, I'd probably just slow the pace and hang with her.

Planing ahead, on the other hand, I would say running the 2nd half of her 20 miler is something you may want to avoid if you think it's going to hinder your own plan.

Good luck to you. Now I'll go read the other comments and see how many people disagree with me.

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