Some post-race thoughts on Sunday's Holiday Classic 15K that didn't make it into the race report...
* So what was my pace? I finished in 1:21:48, but how does that translate over into a longer race? My time amounts to a pace of 8:46 per minute, and translated over 13.1 miles, that would be a finish time of 1:54:50! Would I be able to maintain that pace for another six kilometers? I don't know, but I would sure love to find out. Now I'm itching to run another half!
Looking back on the race and how I was running those middle miles, miles 6 and 7 and 8, I would like to think that I can maintain that pace for another four miles or so. I don't know, maybe I'd hit the wall around Mile 11 like I did during my Half, but again I think with some Gu and the fuel belt, and a solid foundation to run in, I'm confident there would be no wall.
I do think that my pace would slow down over 13.1 miles, even if I don't hit the dreaded wall, but I'd have essentially five minutes to play with so even if I did slow down, maybe it wouldn't be enough to keep me from finishing in under two hours.
The bad thing is, of course, I will have to wait for a while to test myself at 13.1 miles once more. But if nothing else I will be extra hungry when I do run another half.
* The race distance is still a bit strange to me, even after having ran it. I consulted with The Book before the race and it said to treat a 15K like you would a half-marathon, so I didn't want to exert too much energy in Miles 3-7 or so. In hindsight I probably could have picked up the pace right at Mile 7 but I waited a bit longer. That might have shaved some time off, but I don't know that it would have been significant, and I might not have had enough gas left in the tank to sprint at the finish like I did.
* Remember my Loper pal Meriel? She kicked major ass in the race. Her time was 1:13:55!!! That's a pace of under eight minutes. Over a 15K race, that is impressive. Heck, over an anything distance that's really good. Best of all, she finished fifth overall for women. Not in her age category, but overall of any woman that ran in the race. Translated over 13.1 miles, that pace would give her a finish time of 1:43:42. I am in awe.
* Looking back at the Motivational Monday post, I know I'm a much better runner now than I was at the beginning of the year. And I say that because of my most recent races. I have gained a lot of knowledge and logged a lot of miles and naturally that has translated over well. I am conditioning myself to run a marathon, after all, so my body needs to prepare for that.
When I ran my first three races of the year, I didn't have nearly the base I have now. That's why I want to run another marathon in 2010, preferably in the spring. I will have a great foundation in place and I don't want to hit the reset button. I want to continue logging miles, continue improving my performances and gaining experience.
Our Loper season ends on Feb. 21 with a 12-mile run in the morning and I do want to continue running double-digit miles on the weekends, whether it's with a group of Lopers or myself. I'm hoping to have decided by then what Marathon to run next and that will probably help me formulate a plan.