Saturday, June 4, 2016

crack of dawn, part 5

I did it again: signed up for and ran the Crack of Dawn 8K at 6:30 a.m.  It's the same course as it has been, starting at the Millcreek Canyon gate closure and running down the canyon road, then turning left onto Wasatch Boulevard for a slightly uphill finish.  I had convinced my work neighbor N to run it again this year since she likes downhill races; again, she was using it as a training run with Ragnar coming up for her in two weeks and then the Big Cottonwood Canyon half marathon later this summer.

H, ever the good guy, got up early with me to be race support.  We picked N up at the Olympic Hills shopping center/finish line so she could leave her car there, and then H dropped us both at the start around 6 a.m.  It was cool, albeit definitely warmer than last year's race, and I was grateful that the sun was still behind the mountains.  N and I thought that it seemed like fewer runners this year as we maneuvered ourselves to the start, mostly women.  It's still a very lowkey event, although we did notice a few runners who were clearly in it to win it.  Including one woman who we had seen running UP the canyon road as we drove in.  You know, as a warm-up.  (She ended up winning for the women.)

Almost done

For some reason I got a much faster start than I usually do.  My legs felt good and I pulled away from N right away.  I stayed feeling good for probably two miles and then slowed up a bit as my back tightened up, thinking that perhaps I shouldn't have gone off so fast.  When the road flattened out, with about a mile to go, I remember thinking, "Why? Why do I do this race?"  But at that point the end was in sight (figuratively speaking) and there was a woman in front of me who I wanted to catch, so I just kept going.  One runner passed me just as we turned onto Wasatch Boulevard, much to my dismay, and because of the uphill, and having no kick left in my legs, I just couldn't pass this one woman who was mere steps ahead of me.  Still, I had my fastest time to date, so I can't complain too much.


They put the results up right away and after confirming that I was not on the podium, H and I bid N adieu and headed off for breakfast.  We were heading to the Lazy Day Cafe but before we got there, noticed that the Millcreek Cafe & Eggworks was open and not yet busy, and so we landed there instead.  H had a lovely Denver omelette with hash browns and sourdough toast; I over-ordered with the Millcreek Mound: two eggs, bacon, sausage and ham (I read it as "bacon, sausage OR ham" and ended up giving H my sausages), with hash browns and sourdough toast.  I couldn't quite finish my breakfast but felt like I did perhaps earn all the calories I stuffed down my gullet.

Race results
2016:  5/18 age group finish; 34/115 overall finish; time: 39:55.96
2015:  8/23 age group finish; 59/175 overall finish; time: 41:24.02
2014:  5/23 age group finish; 65/174 overall finish; time 40:53.07
2012:  5/12 age group finish; 61/126 overall finish; time 44:15.11
2011:  6/15 age group finish; 45/106 overall finish; time 41:09.75

June 4th was a very busy day for races, actually,  In addition to my race, there was the Porcupine Hill Climb and the Tri the Heights (both in Cottonwood Heights), the Corporate Cup 5K in SLC, the Dirty Dash (Midway), the Oquirrh Mountain half marathon/10K/5K (Tooele) and the Thelma and Louise half marathon (Moab), to name just a few.  So nice to see people getting outside and getting after it.

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