30 km race report

on Sunday, August 20, 2006 at 12:47 PM

I did the inaugural 30 km Midsummer nights run last night.The short story is I ended up finishing in a little under 2:26.

The long story... After my carboload breakfast, I wasn't sure how to eat for the rest of the day. I ended up skipping lunch and eating a Tim Hortons apple fritter + small coffee at about 2pm and then a bagel with PB and jam at around 5:30 to prep for the 8pm race.

The weather seemed to co-operate. Though there were predictions for rain, it never really materialized, though I was starting to worry a little when there was a brief rain shower on the drive down.

Arrived with about 45 minutes to start time where they were handing out awards for those best dressed. People were dressed as fairies and butterflies, amongst other things. I ended up going in a bland white shirt. Picked up my ankle chip where I also received a clip on blinker and two glo-sticks. I also had brought along my bicycle blinker which I had planned on clipping to the back of my shorts.

The race started on time and it was still fairly light outside. I usually don't run races with my HR monitor, but since this was technically supposed to be a training run, I decided to wear it. I didn't wear my foot pod though as I was going to rely on the markers for pacing feedback. At the beginning of races, I have a tendency to get caught up in the flow of people. My original plan which was to start out at a slow long run pace quickly went into the crapper. I didn't see the first km split and passed the 2km mark at 9:16 which translates into a 7:27 min/mile. Yikes, though this could have been due to inaccurate markers. I tried to slow down a bit for the third km, and did, but still no where near the pace I wanted to be at that point. I then proceeded to start the marathon pace portion of the run even though I had already been running marathon pace up until that point.

The course was interesting. There's a mix of running on roads, paved trails, dirt trails, steel bridges and boardwalks. By the time I got to the Leslie spit it was dark and as I feared it was not lighted and I found myself stumbling at times due to the uneven footing because of the unexpected speed bumps. The dirt trails were worse where the uneven footing led to a couple of occasions where I almost turned over my ankle.

I hit the half way mark at 1:11:22 which averaged a 7:40 min/mile pace. One beef I had was the km markers. I found that the km markers were way off at points so it was hard to judge how fast i was going. Also it was so dark on the spit, you couldn't even see if they had km markers. As a result, after I hit the 15km mark, I didn't see another marker until 25km which means that for 10km, I had no idea of how fast I was going. Split times based on markers were:

km HR Avg min/mile
km HR Avg min/mile
2 (2km) 162 07:27.0
12 177 07:49.8
3 168 08:17.8
13 180 07:00.4
4 171 07:15.8
14 178 07:13.4
5 171 07:55.2
15 180 06:48.3
6 174 07:53.6
25 (10km) 175 07:54.8
7 175 07:49.1
26 175 09:00.3
8 174 08:16.2
27 171 07:13.6
9 176 07:43.8
28 174 08:09.7
10 177 07:08.6
29 173 07:56.5
11 174 08:45.0
30 175 08:21.5

I passed the 25 km mark at 2:00:32 which averaged a 7:46 min/mile pace. At this point, not only had I completed the Pfitz mandated 15 mile long run, but I did it all at slightly faster than marathon pace! For the last 5km, i tried to slow down to long run pace, but these were all still pretty fast. Final time of just under 2:26 which averaged to 7:50 min/mile! I had only intended to do 12 miles at marathon pace, but ended up averaging that for the whole 30km!

I'm not sure what to make of my HR. It seems a bit high for marathon pace, almost in LT range. I've never measured my HR during a marathon so I'm not sure how to interpret it. Can I continue to maintain this HR and pace for another 7.6 miles? This is complicated by the fact that it was humid and a bit warm, so my HR on a cooler day (such as on race day in Chicago) should be lower. I did finish with what I felt was a lot left in the tank so hopefully this means that the training is going well.

It was an interesting experience. Several complaints I have were the markers, and that there weren't enough marshalls. There were points were it was difficult to know which direction to go. Though it didn't affect me, several of the aid stations ran out of cups for some of the slower participants. Overall I enjoyed myself though I don't know if I do it again.

I didn't get home till midnight and didn't sleep at all last night. My HR was still racing. I've got bags under my eyes right now and feel like crap. Hopefully I'll be able to catch some sleep this afternoon. On the postive side, my legs feel great.

Since I skipped a 6 mile recovery run this week, but did do an extra 3 miles during the race, I'm at 45.7 miles for the week. I may head out for a recovery run tonight just so that I can reach the 47 miles that Pfitz has scheduled for this week.

I hope everyone else's long runs went well, especially those of you doing marathon pace runs based on Pfitz for Chicago. Thanks for reading.


yumke said...

Congrats! Do you know how many people did the race and how you did.

I think the spiked heart rate may also be attributed to the excitment of doing a race...

Frankie said...

Hey, nice job on the race. THat's crazy that we crossed the halfway mark seconds apart. Where do we get the official results?

Arcaner said...


I did okay overall. Part of me wishes that I'd gone out harder, but the rest of me keeps reminding myself that it was supposed to be a training run.

jellypepper said...

Overall, sounds like a cool experience anyway. That's the medal? Not quite what I was imagining since that was so hyped up.

Oh well.. good work on the... training run. :)

Arcaner said...

Yeah the medal was a bit of a letdown. I was imagining a medal that was individually hammered out by a blacksmith. For some reason, I thought that each medal would be unique.

Bob said...

Nice run, sounds like fun. I have the same question about HR and marathon pace.

Sonia said...

Great time on the race, congrats! Thank for giving me advice about racing before my marathon. I'm still debating...

Steve said...

Well Done!