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Welcome to Choke City Forum Index -> Training Tales and Race Reflections

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Joined: 27 Jun 2003
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PostPosted: 11/15/03 - 22:05    Post subject: Welcome to Choke City
Population: Me

Cajun Cup 10k Race Report
It really wasn't a bad race, but it could have been so much more. I'll get to that.

Woke up at 5:15, ate my standard pre-race breakfast of toast and water. At 6, I pick up my friend Laura who is also running. She was wearing fuchsia tights and a bright tie-dyed shirt. Like her dad said last weekend at the half, if you're going to attract that much attention to yourself, you better be running fast. It was 42 degrees in Baton Rouge, but I had checked and knew that it was above 50 in lafayette. Anyway, we drove the hour to Lafayette and picked up our packets. Nice shirts this year, better than the Cingular Orange of last year. I didn't do much of a warmup because I was really pretty worried about my ankles and that weird muscle on the side of my calf. Plenty of stretching though. It was probably in the low 60's by the time the race started. In my opinion, it's a little warm to race. I line up right at the start line because last year I lined up 5 or 6 deep and had to fight my way through slow people for the first 200 yards. The first mile had the sign :welcome to choke city:

I was just running a pace to keep up with where I though I should be in the crowd. I hadn't run much since the half so I was clueless on pace (I usually am). There were some pretty young kids and a girl about 14 a good bit ahead of me, so I was thinking no way were we going faster than a 6:35 pace. I mean the mile felt hard, but I didn't trust myself.

Mile 1: 6:12 Shocked

I realize that if I can continue this, I'll be in awesome PR range. I feel pretty sure that I cannot, so I back off the pace. Pass most of the kids that got burnt out quickly, and still trying to catch that girl.

Mile 2: 6:38 (12:50)

I saw my parents right after mile 2. Lafayette is only about 20 minutes from home so they came out to watch. Mile 3 I get passed by a group of people. I'm starting to crack and just trying to keep near the pace.

Mile 3: 6:50 (19:40)

The fourth mile was pretty hard on me mentally. I kept trying to pick up the pace, but every time I did, I would have to drop back down after a few seconds. I just wasn't feeling it.

Mile 4: 6:52 (26:32)

I've got no clue what was happening on mile 5. 4 and 5 winded through downtown, which is probably my favorite part of the course, but my heart just wasn't in it. I passed the second water table and again didn't get anything to drink.

Mile 5: 6:52 (33:34)

I tried my hardest to pick up the pace on the cleanup. I know I at least improved it from the previous 3 miles, but I was drained. I passed one guy with about a half mile to go, and that was it. About 400 yards from the finish they have an overpass (the only hill on the course). I was trying to maintain pace as much as possible on the way up and still retain enough energy to kick coming down the other side and to the finish. I could hear 2 guys coming up behind me, just getting closer all the time. By the time I got to the top of the hill, their shadows reaching a foot or two in front of me. When I saw that I kicked as hard as I could (which probably isn't that much) and left them behind. I kicked way too soon, but I think I discouraged them from chasing me. At least that's what I tell myself. I nearly puked while running the last 50 yards, but luckily I held it together.

Mile 6.2: 7:52 (41:26)

I feel that I should have run a much, much better time. My pains didn't bother me much, so that's not a factor. I easily see that running a week after a half-marathon is way too soon, but oh well. My biggest mistake was going out so freaking fast and ignoring pace. It's such a rookie mistake too. Granted I am a rookie (this being my 7th race), but sheesh... I thought I was smart. It's a PR by 41 seconds, but I can't help but be disappointed. The competition was a little slimmer than last year. The overall turnout wasn't much different, but last year I would have gotten 3rd in the AG with the same time. Last year's AG winner didn't show. His loss, my gain. Last year my 42:07 put me at 62nd overall. This year the same time would have placed 41st.

Laura came in at a 56:19. She was on pace for 8:30 miles through mile 4.5 or so, but her foot was really bothering her for the rest. The girl I was trying to chase down ran a 40:thirty-something? The winner ran a 30:26 Shocked

This is a great race. It's easily the best-directed race I've run. They are great with tearing the bottom of the bib off to keep track of finishers (the way it's supposed to be done). The finish chute was 30 yards long, plenty of room to run out. Cash prizes are given out to overall winners, and first place in age groups get awesome metal crafted engraved mugs (I'll try to get a pic). Second and third get medals. The food is awesome (red beans and rice and gumbo). Volunteers are at every mile calling out times, and although I was in no-man's land most of the way, volunteer support was good. The only thing I would change is to have bottled water and bottled powerade post-race. I don't like continually getting water cups, and they never mix the powerade in good proportions. Luckily I had a 64oz Powerade in my trunk Wink

Thanks for reading. I like making my race reports, as I don't really have friends to share running stories with, and I tend to make them long.
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Joined: 16 Aug 2003
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PostPosted: 11/15/03 - 22:53    Post subject:
Way to Go Mech! Mr. Green

Don't be disappointed in your race. You still raced well and for a "Rookie"(as you call yourself)'re doing great! I enjoyed reading your breakdown of how it went. I wish I could have been there for all that great food.
Gone Fishin
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Joined: 15 May 2002
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Location: Lake Wobegon, MN
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PostPosted: 11/15/03 - 23:49    Post subject:
A Pr! PR! PR! Absolutely nothin' to feel bad when you break into new territory. You're on the verge of a great racing winter. Looking forward to all the reports thumbs up
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Joined: 11 May 2003
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Location: Coquitlam, British Columbia
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PostPosted: 11/16/03 - 00:19    Post subject:
jrjo wrote:
A Pr! PR! PR! Absolutely nothin' to feel bad when you break into new territory. You're on the verge of a great racing winter. Looking forward to all the reports thumbs up

Hipster Doofus
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Joined: 16 Jul 2003
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Location: A moving target in a firing range.
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PostPosted: 11/16/03 - 09:58    Post subject:

Congrats to you on the PR and the excellent report. I'll take a PR in any race I can do (as long as my leg doesn't fall off, or something).

You're learning what I still can't tell my body to do - to not go out on the first mile with all guns firing. Some race it's going to come back to bite me. Don't be discouraged - you finished, you didn't get hurt, and you got the PR. Sure, look back at the race, and analyze. Then proceed from there.

thumbs up
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Joined: 30 Sep 2003
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PostPosted: 11/16/03 - 13:22    Post subject:
Good job Mech! PR's are ALWAYS good!
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Joined: 29 Aug 2002
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PostPosted: 11/16/03 - 17:08    Post subject:
Great job on the PR ! Dancing Banana

Mmmmm, Gumbo.
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Joined: 18 May 2002
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Location: Jacksonville, Florida
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PostPosted: 11/17/03 - 06:47    Post subject:
Great Job MED,
I am continously fighting the battle to not go out to fast and I still lose all the time. I think it just takes a lot of discipline and the desire to start farther in the back of the pack to force you to slow down.

PR's always rule so don't worry about anything else. You are looking primed for running during the rest of the winter.
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Joined: 25 Jun 2002
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Location: The Beautiful South Shore of L.I. NY
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PostPosted: 11/17/03 - 08:36    Post subject:
Great race. A pr is a pr! Congrats on a smoking time.
purple hayes
Frightened Inmate #2
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Joined: 14 May 2002
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PostPosted: 11/17/03 - 09:23    Post subject:
Where's the choke city part? Other than the 1st mile, the rest look pretty even. And I saw your subtle hint that you picked up a 1st place AG award. Congrats!
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Joined: 27 Jun 2003
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PostPosted: 11/17/03 - 10:05    Post subject:
purple hayes wrote:
Where's the choke city part? Other than the 1st mile, the rest look pretty even.

To me, a mental error is a big choke. Going out too fast is what you're always warned against, and I just didn't pay attention. I figure I lost at least 40 seconds because of it. I should have gone out at 6:35 and kept it there til mile 4 then dropped down to whatever I could, probably 6:25-6:30ish. Dropping down to a 6:30 pace would give a 40:38, a full 48 seconds faster. I realize that I might not have been able to maintain that pace either, but I think it's much more likely because I've run that pace in training. Also 48 seconds leaves a lot of room to play with.

I tend to put a lot of thought into my mistakes... helps me avoid them in the future.
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PostPosted: 11/17/03 - 10:30    Post subject:
A PR is still a positive thing no matter how you got there. Use the race as a learning tool. Look at it this way - you proved the theory that going out to fast in the first mile will hurt you in the end.
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Joined: 18 Nov 2002
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PostPosted: 11/17/03 - 10:33    Post subject:
I second PH. I see no choke. Choke means you gain significant time from mile to mile, or DNF. Perhaps you're disappointed because you wanted better, but no choke. Nice PR. Sounds like a great race save the rip off in the chute thing - I hate that. Detracts from accuracy - I'm a big fan o' the chip.
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Joined: 30 Oct 2003
Posts: 36
Location: Austin, TX
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PostPosted: 11/18/03 - 00:12    Post subject:
Congrats on the PR. I feel ya on the going out too fast part. I did the same yesterday in my first half. Oh well live and learn. Great race report!
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