Race: LMJS 4th Sunday 5K May 2010

This took place just a week after the Tilden Tough Ten, so I was curious to see if I had recovered in a week and could pace a 5K properly after a long absence from this distance. After a week of minimal mileage I joined about 130 other runners on the start line at Lake Merritt. This was the second of these races to use chip timing, and the experimental configuration this month added a chip-timed start as well as a finish. This meant we had to file through a somewhat narrow start line which limited is to a walk until were actually across. Fortunately we then had the full width of the road at our disposal and could immediately get up to speed.

I had eschewed the Garmin, wearing a regular stopwatch to time my splits. Was this pace too fast? Maybe not. Don’t forget this is only a 5K! I settled into about 20th place as the field spread out on its way to the top of the lake. This seemed good, without being super-fast. Plainly my legs were still feeling a touch of Tilden’s hill-fest.

As we hit the long straight down the south side of the lake a stiff headwind became apparent. I picked a largish guy to draft behind. Unfortunately he started to fade and I had to go on by. A pair of young men up ahead did not offer much shelter and soon I was past them also, facing the full force. Mile 1: 6:41. Decent. Wonder if I can maintain that? Not if this wind continues.

And it did continue, even after turning the corner at the West end of the lake. The local topography was doing it’s trick of curving the wind along the shoreline so that it continued to come from ahead. At this halfway point I was surprised to be passed by an older guy, but he was the last. I did not manage to stay in contact with him, but held my position for the second half of the race. Second mile: 7:03. Ugh. I applied myself a bit more on the slight uphill to the finish, missing the third mile split. Finish in 21:28. Quite a bit slower than my PR, but OK under the circumstances. Interestingly, I came a lowly 5th in my age group, despite coming 18th overall out of 136 finishers. The winner of my AG was 6th overall in 19:12. I have some work to do at this distance!

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3 Responses to “Race: LMJS 4th Sunday 5K May 2010”


  1. 1 Flo May 29, 2010 at 5:42 pm

    Sounds like a hard race! Ugh on the wind, Nature’s invisible wall. It’s really hard to run short races when you haven’t in a while – it’s such a different outlay of energy. It’s been almost a year since I ran one so I’m not expecting much from mine tomorrow. You just gotta remind your legs what you’re talking about. 🙂 Good luck this weekend, Crazy Jim!

  2. 2 Christi May 30, 2010 at 5:37 am

    You did awesome for windy conditions! Keep up the great running!

  3. 3 Ewen May 30, 2010 at 8:37 pm

    Headwind and an uphill finish – sounds like a tough race Jim. 21:28 isn’t too bad, but yes, 19:12 is flying. Funny set-up with the start – they need to buy a wider mat!


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Race PRs

5K20:43 (LMJS 6/28/09
10K43:44
12K54:36 (Across Bay 3/21/10)
15K1:09:51 (LMJS 19/27/09)
Half1:31:28 (Kaiser 2012
Marathon 3;13:14 (CIM '11)

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