Monday: 7.5 mile flat run on the Shoreline Park trails.
Tuesday: 12 miles of roller skiing on the Shoreline Park trails.
Thursday: Ran a flat 5 miles on the roads before flying to Daytona Beach, FL for the USA Track & Field annual meeting.
Dave & Jason at Tiger Bay State Forest
Friday: Dave Dunham, Paul Kirsch, Jason Bryant and I ran 5 miles in the morning at Tiger Bay State Forest. It was flat but we found some nice dirt roads, single-track trails and a small lake to run around. In the afternoon we ran another 5 miles at the Spruce Creek Campground.
Spruce Creek Campground
Saturday: Race Day! Every year at the annual meeting USATF organizes some kind of low-key race for attendees. Last year is was a cold & painful 1 mile race around downtown St. Louis. This year's race was a out-n-back 5k on the beach - nice! Dave, Jason, Paul and I got 3 miles warm-up and warm-down for a total of 9 miles for the day. Having not raced or done speed since mid-September, my goal was to finish without getting hurt.
Dave picked up an awesome speed suit on sale.
With that in mind I started out at a comfortable 6 minute pace for the first 1/2 mile. At 1/2 mile Dave & Jason were about 15 seconds ahead with the eventual winner & runner-up while I ran behind the top woman. When we turned around (at 1/2 mile) the wind was at our backs, the pace felt too easy and no muscles or joints were complaining so I picked up the pace to close he gap on Jason. As we approached the next turn around at 2 miles I passed and gapped Jason so he wouldn't be able to draft once we hit the headwind. At the turn I think I was about 15-20 seconds behind Dave and running in 4th place. With a headwind and running in sand against an encroaching high tide, the last mile felt pretty hard. I was also working harder since I wanted to close the gap to Dave and run a respectable time - somewhere near 17 minutes. At the finish Dave was 3 seconds up and I crossed the line in 17:13 for 4th overall. While the warm-down run felt painfully slow, it was good to have a race under my belt without getting injured (again). Now I feel comfortable starting the process of getting speedy again........very carefully.
USATF Beach 5k Race - 17:13 - 4th place - 5:42 pace - Max HR 172.
The clock tower at Daytona Beach