Well, I am continuing to gain experience, running my first 10K race this morning at the Bear Creek 10K. I may be gaining experience but it's apparent that I'm still very green. After I finished, Miriam extended her fist for a "cool runner's handshake" and a well done. I looked at her with a puzzled look and then down at my shirt thinking I had something on my shirt or something. Graciously, Miriam explained that no, she's not pointing at my shirt, she' offering one of those "cool runner's handshakes" where you basically just knock fists. I'm so stupid. Still, it was funny and worth mentioning.
This race was put on by my running club, The Houston Striders, and was FREE to anyone who wanted to race. One of the main reasons the Striders put on this race is because so many of our members are not able to race the Luke's/Koala Half Marathon next weekend because of volunteering duties. So, the Striders provide this FREE race as an alternative to running the half marathon or the half marathon relay next weekend. It' pretty cool that our local club can put on such a great event that is so well supported. We had water stops every 2 miles. There were mile markers every mile and an official time on a certified course. I may be wrong on the course certification but I know our club has run out here for many years and I'd take their word on the distance over any satellite or computer mapping any day.
I couldn't have asked for better conditions for my debut at the 10K distance. Unusually, the temps actually dropped after the start and through the finish. According to the weather at Hull Field, the temp at start was 59 and was 54 at the finish. The overcast skies gave no hint of rain and only helped keep us very cool and comfortable.
No pressure today since I was guaranteed a PR as a first timer. The plan was to just go out stong till I got warmed up, then try to hold that tempo effort as long as I could. It's the effort where I'm breathing hard but not gasping for air but if I ran any faster, I would be. I still don't know if that's how you're supposed to run a 10K. I just knew I wasn't going to RTYP!!! I knew going in that this a hilly course. Nothing major, not long steep hills. Just rolling hills. Up and down. My plan on the hills was to maintain an even effort going up the hills and then roll down the other side,
parallel perpendicular to the ground.
So, the execution was pretty much as planned and my splits were pretty even. I picked it up a bit for the last .5 miles, to finish strong. I really liked the out and back course as I got to see everybody heading back and looking good. Here are the splits:
Total distance - 10K
Total time - 1:18:35
Mile 1 - 12:48
Mile 2 - 12:32
Mile 3 - 12:40
Mile 4 - 12:55
Mile 5 - 12:45
Mile 6 - 12:44
.2 miles - 0:2:07 (11:25 pace)
The predictors for my half marathon time, based on today's 1:18:35 10K finish, say that I should be able to finish the half marathon in 2:55:00, provided the temps are comparable and all other things are equal. Of course, anything can go wrong or right in any race so the 2:55:00 really serves no purpose to me other than the encouragement that it may be possible to break 3 hours. Funny thing, base on last weekend's, 10 mile race, the same predictor said I would run today's 10K in 1:25:19 and I blew that out of the water. What a difference no rain and 25 degrees makes. Overall, I'm please with my first 10K time. Look out, TXU Energy Turkey Trot 10K, I'm coming to get ya.