Sunday, September 26, 2010

Grrrrr - a 5k Race Report

The Biggest Loser 5k in Myrtle Beach SC was this saturday. I was really trying to PR since this was my only 5k this year. I might end up with a turkey trot or something, but now is the time to really go for it. My runs have been fast lately and I was feeling good.

Before the race:

Being that this was a Biggest Loser 5k, trainer Bob Harper was there. So were Phil and Amy (from SC), Ali and Helen who were the first two female winners. There was also a giant (like 6'7") former contestant that I didn't recognize. It was very inspirational. The tv crews were there, and the episode is supposed to air on Thanksgiving. The theme was "Don't Compete, Just Complete". so there were a ton of walkers. And they all wanted to be up near the front where Bob the trainer was speaking. Apparently, they are doing 20 of these events next year and this one was the pilot. We had 2600 people signed up to run between the 5k and the 1 mile runs!

So they gave the inspirational "get America moving" speech, which is certainly something that I can get behind. But I don't think they specified the "get the hell out of my way" point quite effectively enough. The starting gun went off and we didn't move. Remember, we were maybe 30 feet behind the starting line. The former contestants led things off, and I don't remember passing them but apparently I did.

The start was incredibly congested. I started the Garmin as soon as I crossed the timing mat, and it was a full 2 minutes until I finally was able to get under a 10 minute pace! So much for PR-ing. They never said walkers should stay to the right! I didn't think you could fit that many people in the first 35 ft of a race. But I must have passed a hundred people in the first few minutes. Kelley got to talk some with Ali, one of the winners and share her weight loss story. And that meant I was going to have to stay closer to an 8 minute pace to have a chance to PR rather than the 8:20 pace I was going to try.

Once I made my way past the walkers I checked my pace. 6:54, too fast. slow down. 7:04, still too fast. 7:02, damnit slow down or your going to burn out. Even with the congestion at the start I checked my distance for the first time at 1.2 miles, about 9:20. That's way too fast, no way I can hold it.

Bob the trainer ran with the crowd some. I almost caught him, he was maybe two people ahead of me when he peeled off from the pack to join the 1 milers at their start. I still got to yell a "Hey Bob Rock on!" when I went past him and he did acknowlege it. That was kind of cool.

At 1.7 miles my abs gave out. I walked a little bit just to catch up so I could hang onto an 8 minute pace to try and muscle it out. But that's what happens when you start out too fast. The abs can't hold up. Plus they said there were two water stops along the route and I was surprised to get past halfway before seeing the first one. But I walked the water stop at 1.9 miles and a couple more times after that. But after that first water stop I couldn't hold pace consistently for any real distance.

About 2.5 miles in I just decided to stray out at a 9 minute pace. Still had to walk once more. But I should have been able to finish it out.

The route was fantastic. It was really flat, a lot of time off of the roads. It wound through an amusement park, through parking lots, and finished on the boardwalk. Once again, management was the key. Navigate the traffic at the start and keep an even pace that you can hold throughout the race. Consistency is the key.

The goal to finish was under 26:00 for a PR. When I crossed the mat I stopped the garmin at 28:16. Missed it by that much. Still I put up a valiant effort.

The official results came in, and my chip time was 26:35. I was much closer than I thought! Not sure how the chip time was that much faster than the garmin time, but ok I'll take it. Finished 133 out of 1945 finishers, which is still much higher than I was expecting too. But top 10% is nice!

Kelley at the finish after the race. She finished in 31:06 and had a great time!

My friend Mae Anne found me after the race. Blogger meetups are the best! Her husband and kids were there too and they were so sweet.

And Kelley got a pic with the big man Bob Harper! He was greeting people at the finish line, but wasn't there when either one of us finished. But during a spot while there wasn't very many people were crossing the line, she grabbed him for a pic. Bob is awesome! He was so cool and personable, I was totally starstruck.

We had to find some shade after the race. It was HOT! 90+ degrees out there. It's almost october people! this is stupid. At least we got medals.
Kelley's mom and Gene came down with us for the weekend, so they kept the girls while we were racing, and brought them to the finish line while we were running. It was great having everyone down there. The kids absolutely went nuts for the beach and the hotel.

Have you ever been to Myrtle Beach before? It's the tackiest beach in the country. You either love it or you hate it. I hate it. It's the redneck's riviera. I'm not real big on beaches to begin with, but MB has got to be the bottom of the barrel. It is the redneck's riviera.
I saw not one but TWO pregnant women in bikini's at the same time at the same pool in our hotel. Fortunately, only one of them was smoking. Kelley said she saw a third show up later.
I left the pool to go for a walk on the beach. Now the speedo I use in the pool was the only swimsuit I had on the trip, so that's what I wore to the beach. I am glad that I can say I was not the oldest, fattest, or only guy in a speedo on that beach.
I saw more exposed boobies on that beach than was really necessary. Those guys really should have covered up.
The beach was kind of crowded, but not by peak summer standards. Still, there was between 800 and 900 women out on that beach. Approximately 750 were wearing bikini's. 2 of those women were actually dateable (if I was in a position to notice dateable women which I'm not). Maybe 30 of those women were under age 50.
The pool, the beach, everywhere else in Myrtle Beach except the race site. It was a parade of "what not to wear". Or at least "what not to wear when you're that damn old". or that size. or both. So I fit in great.
So final thoughts: Great race. Well organized. Great cause. I might be on national TV. MB sucks but it is a flat place to race. My bottom line is my bottom. I am still carrying around 200 - 207 lbs, and I just can't push 8 minute miles at that weight. I also can't push the bike faster that 18 mph consistently (see Patriots race report) at that weight. I have started reading Racing Weight, and it's time to admit that I can't get any faster without slimming down. Even this weekend, I need to make Ryan's dreams come true and hit the beach in that Speedo thong, but make it look good like he does. Is it going to get boring if I start posting some weight numbers?


Wes said...

hahaha! Get the hell outta my way. That's some funny stuff right there :-)

I would suggest that The Biggest Loser 5K is not the appropriate place to try for a PR!

Dee Dee and I took a trip to Myrtle Beach. Unfortunately, or fortunately as you may describe it, it was too cold to go the beach.

Good luck with the rest of your goals. You've come so far!! I can tell you that I recently changed my diet, and the weight just fell off. You've really got to work it, and I want that book!

Dean said...

Well next time I guess you have to push your way up to the front way before th race ever starts. Great time, congrats!!

Glaven Q. Heisenberg said...

My little town has a Turkey Trot every year and for some reason it is very popular and thousands upon thousands of people show up - more and more every year. And every year I post worse times in it, But this past year, I found out why when they finally used chips to time not just your finish, but also when you crossed the starting mat.

And my chip time was like 3 minutes faster than my clock time.

They actually have signs up which tell the 6-, 7-, 8- and 9-minute milers where they should be starting from.

The slow runner just ignore the signs. Even people who start out walking ignore the signs and line up in front.

Sucks, but, eh, what're ya gonna do? Just don't expect to PR or get anywhere near it.

Congrats on the near-PR, Cletus!

Mae said...

MB really is the perfect breading ground for What Not To Wear contestants. We saw a sign for Meth that said, "Jail, it's not where you pictured losing your virginity." That pretty much sums it all up, don't ya think?

Jess said...

First off congrats on an awesome race. It really sounds like you had a good time with a great atmosphere. I hope BL will host a race near the DC area. That'd make me smile.

I love "Myrtle Beach" but I don't stay in MB proper, I stay in the smaller private beach just south of there. It's not tacky heaven like MB proper is.

And as far as posting weight's your blog you do what you want. I won't stop reading if you do that!

teacherwoman said...

Great race report! Sounds like fun. I don't think I have every looked at my watch and said "Damn...slow it down!" lol! You speed demon!

BTW, thanks for putting the marathon bug in my ear. Now you have me thinking ... a lot... hmmph.

Al's CL Reviews said...

I always thought Ocean City, MD was tacky until I visited MB. You described it spot-on.

Great job with the race. Sounds like despite the cluster, it was a good outing.

healthy ashley said...

Eh, you win some and you lose some but this still sounds like a fun race!

triblog carol said...

wow, must have been alot of racers for it to be so congested. sounds like a half marathon or something! Nice job going fast after getting thru the pack (and sorry your abs gave out).

I don't like myrtle beach too much either. lots of motorcyles making loud noise!

Badgergirl said...

Sounds like a fun race. Maybe they'll come to Wisconsin since we do have two former BL contestants in my neck of the woods :)

Congrats on the near PR!