I had a hard time getting to sleep last night. Drifted off sometime after 1:00 am. Alarm woke me up at 3:50 am. I’m not a happy camper without enough sleep. Ate an energy bar as I got ready. Drove in the dark to AF High School using my GPS. I left myself zero margin for error and didn’t want to get lost. Cars were backed up trying to park. Boarded a bus about 4:50 with Blaine who was pacing the 1:55 group today. Long, dark ride up to Tibble Fork Reservoir.
Satelite view & Elevation chart
Killed time at the top chatting with other runners, prepping my watch and iPod, peeing in the bushes, and waiting for the people on the late busses. We were supposed to start at 5:40 am, but it ended up being 6:00 am. The usual for races that require bussing runners to the start line. Annie and Raylene were also racing today, but I didn’t see them. I didn’t have any big expectations for this race other than to run my best and hope my time was good enough to place.
The Tibble Creek Fork is only 2 ½ miles long and we were out in no time. The trick is finding a pace that you can maintain throughout. I want to go fast, but I don’t want to burn out at the end either. My first mile was quick, 6:25, to get away from the crowd. I slowed down to a 7:10 for mile 2 and a 7:02 for the third. My 5K time was about 20:30—my usual 5K race finish time.
I was hungry before the race even started. I should have eaten more for breakfast. For that reason, I downed a cup of energy drink at the first aid station to try and get some calories in me. That made me have to pee for the rest of the race. I refused to stop though because I didn’t want to lose time. I was feeling good so I sped up a little.
Mile 4 6:53
Mile 5 6:16
The second aid station had GU’s, and I slammed a chocolate one. That really helped and took the edge off my hunger pains. I drank more even though my bladder was already full. Ran a 6:23 for mile 6 despite the aid station, followed by a 6:39 mile 7. Skipped the next aid station to keep my pace up. At this point I’m feeling good and passing a lot of people. Then we exited American Fork Canyon and things leveled out. Much harder to keep a sub 7:00 minute mile pace.
We followed the trail through the golf course and along a stream. It’s a nice trail section through Cedar Hills before kicking us out onto surface streets for the remainder. Mile 8 was 6:48. We hit some rolling hills and I slowed to a 7:17 for mile 9. I squeezed down another GU at 9 mile aid station keeping my hunger at bay. Drank some too. I really had to pee. Mile 10 was 7:39 because I walked through the aid station, and mile 11 was 7:25 because I was getting tired. I had to mentally focus on my legs and feet to make them turn over at the rate I wanted them to. As soon as my mind drifted, I found myself slowing to an 8:00 min pace. Frustrating.
Mile 12, in 7:47, was the toughest of the race. My body wanted to slow down but I was making myself keep pushing. I got a shooting pain in my right calve and it started to lock up, but I took pressure off that foot until it subsided. I gave it everything I had left the last mile, leaving me without a kick at the end. Mile 13 = 7:28. The last .1 was at a 5:56 pace—not exactly a kick, but all I could muster.
My chip time was 1:31:40, a 7:01 pace. I burned 1443 calories—way more than I had at my disposal. According to the official results I came in 50th overall, 35th out of 461 men, and 7th in the 35-39 age group. There were 1182 runners total.
My calves and knees were killing me so a trip to the massage line was a no brainer. The guy I got was really good. He did a lot of pressure points and helped loosen up my leg muscles. Caught up with Blaine and Raylene and got some more info about our relay coming up in 2 weeks. I’m with them in van 2. Really nice medals and shirts. They did a fantastic job for a first time race. Happy with how I did despite not placing.