First official race in 4 months, first being this heavy also.  But in the end, I’m a fat, fit guy.

As predicted the weather couldn’t have been better.  Sunny and warm typical of a summer day, not beginning of October, but I’ll take it.

The start was scheduled for 11 AM.  I was up at my usually 6 AM had my usual breakfast, and ran some errands for a few hours.  Then got ready and left home around 9:40 AM.  Got to the race site approx. 10 AM.  Checked in, and got some water and walked around for 10 mins enjoying the sites & sounds.  At 10:30 I deciced it was time to warmup a little.  So I did about 10 mins of slow running with a few race pace strides in there to wake the legs ups.  Everything felt good, heart rate was in check….lets rock & roll.

My planned pace for this race was a 5:15 min/km (8:27 min/mile) which would give me a finish time of 26:15.  Where did I get that number?  Well, just based on a small interval workout I did earlier in the week, I felt I could maintain that pace for the 5k.  But ultimately, I use my heart rate on race day to determine my pace, and that was the plan.  For a 5k race, the goal is to be at least at 100% of your lactate threshold heart rate as the average (LTHR) which in my case is about 168-170 BPM.

Start line. I'm #111 in red.

I decided to start at the front (sorry fast guys) so I could get a clean line of sight.  At 11 AM, we’re off and I move over to the left side to get out of the way of the fast guys.  At first I was in the 4:50 to 5:00 pace which was fine as there’s a small down grade at the beginning.  Once I passed that, I slowed down a little to 5:05-5:10 pace and stayed there until I could see what my HR was doing.  The first 2k were “easy” and I was maintaining a better pace than planned so I just kept it.  HR was were I wanted it and I enjoyed the scenery. – Great course by the way.  Shady, flat, and there was even 2 separate live bands planning on the side of the road. – By the half way point, I could feel my cardio starting to get a little tired & HR was at LT of 170, but legs still felt great.  I kept going with the 5:10 pace.

The last km was a beast.  Although my legs still felt great, my cardio was maxed out and then my head started rebelling.  At this point I’m at 104% of LTHR and it sure felt that way also.  I just kept telling myself “only 1000m left, only 500m left”.  I could see the finish line and then I was focused and actually managed a little kick at the end.  That little “down grade” at the beginning, well, it was now an up grade.  This help peg my HR to 180 which is pretty much max for me.

I crossed the finish line with a 25:54 (25:51 chip time) and couldn’t have been happier.  That was almost 25 secs faster than I had planned.  I grabbed some water & a banana and walked around for 5-10 mins.  Did a little stretching and downed a G2 Gatorade.

All in all, I was very happy with my performance.  I paced myself perfectly and got a great result.  That result?  I got 2nd place in my group…the Clydesdale (aka fat) group which is for people over 225 lbs.  If I would of ran in my 40-44 age group, I would have been 6th.

About the Crystal Beach 5k: This race is really nice.  Great course, great atmosphere, great people, very laid back environment, and everything ran smooth and on time, goodie back actually had some good stuff in it, and the T-shirt is nice also.  Heck, the post race party was at a local bar near the race, and your bib gave you 2 glasses of beer.  What else can you expect for a $20 entry fee.  I’ll be doing the Crystal Beach 5k race again next year.

Results Summary:

Official Chip Time: 25m 51s
Overall: 96th of 274 (35%)
Group (Clydesdale): 2nd of 4 (50%)
Age Group (40-44): 6th of 8 (75%)
Race Weight: 238 lbs
Official Results: CLICK HERE

Here’s some GARMIN DATA from the race.

Next race on the schedule is the Casablanca Classic 8k on November 12th.  This is another “stepping stone” race to help keep me focused on my run training, and also to determine my current level of fitness.  Till then, my weekly run mileage will continue to increase, and with a little luck, my weight will slowly come down.

To all a good run!