Sunday, May 9, 2010

Plan F

The Sun Run did not go according to plan.

Let me take you back to Friday. I painted the ceiling in my apartment. An onerous ordeal though not overly taxing, or so I thought. Painting my ceiling turned out to be a giant pain in the back. Yesterday after running a nice and easy warm up and doing some strides I began to feel a lot of tightness in my lower back. By the time I got home I could barely move without pain and by evening, even with a good dose of painkillers and topical analgesic, I was in throbbing pain. I woke up this morning feeling like I was hung over, not a good way to feel on race day.

I almost feel like today's run was a Murphy's Law run. If something could go wrong it did. I felt sluggish and was in pain during my warm up and even had difficulty bending down to pick up my race bag. My strides felt good and my back had warmed up a bit but was still quite tender. I felt ready to run at the start line but may have been a bit too excited. With the gun going off I was ready to run hard, maybe a bit too hard.

I can basically attribute my poor performance today to a stupid mistake. That mistake was a 2:51 opening kilometer. When I looked at my watch I had the voice of John in my head. Too fast in the first K will result in a blow up at 5 km. I knew when I looked at my watch that it was going to be a long day and by the 2 km mark I was starting to struggle. I know how I run best and that is by easing into the race and running hard from the back. That did not happen today.

By the time I hit the climb up the Burrard Bridge any notion of running a best time was lost. I was struggling to keep my stride together and fell off the pace of the group I was running with. To add insult to injury I was developing blisters on both my feet. At this point I made a decision to back off the pace and relax for the last half of the race. For all intents and purposes my day was fucked so I might as well not fuck myself up anymore then I already was.

The last half of the race was unremarkable. The pain of my blistered feet overtook the pain of my lower back and I just ran as fast as I could. By the time the last km hit I was able to pick off a couple of guys and then out kick Kyle Jones (I think) into the finish. I guess the good thing about running slow is that it is easier to kick. I ran over a minute slower then I am capable of. I am disappointed.

In many ways I think I should have dropped out of the race at the 5 km mark and just run over to the finish area to chill out. I may have done more damage then good today. This was not the race I was looking for and if I ran to my potential I would have been top 1o. I am really disappointed.

Sometimes I think of the choices I make in my life and the direction they take me. I do not sacrifice anything for running. I love running and racing and the environment at a race. I choose to run ahead of anything. I am already thinking about how excited I am to get back to long runs and hard training again. I want to get back into the gym to get strong. I want to live the life of an elite athlete. I want to stop sacrificing running to live the gay life (not that I really did that much...). The highlight of today was a really long cool down of around 5 miles with Richard Lee's training group. If there is any consolation from today's effort it is that I got some mileage.

Now off to ice in English Bay.

Happy Training!


  1. I think you did an awesome job, you came in 19th? That is more than a good run. Even if you felt it was not your best, it was way ahead of thousands more. Congratulations. ChristopherYVR

  2. Sorry the race didn't go as you wanted and are capable of. I think the triathlete you are speaking of was Jeff Phillips as Kyle isn't in the results

  3. Sorry to hear you didn't so as well as you wanted to. If I get the right results, you placed 19th which I think is pretty darn good already.

  4. 19th? That's not too shabby, though! I went out too fast also, but it is a fast downhill start so it's hard to hold back. Is it better to run an average pace in the first kilometre and save your energy for later, or use the hill to gain a /few/ seconds?

  5. I think it is best to stay calm in the first km and still run around 5-7 seconds faster then normal 10 km race pace without too much harm. I should have run a 3:56 but that extra effort just killed me.