Sunday, January 21, 2007

First Race

I did it, I entered my first official race on my 52nd birthday. It was a 10 mile racewalk around the Rose Bowl and adjacent golf course put on by the Walkers Club of Los Angeles.

What in the world was I thinking, putting myself on the starting line with these really fast racewalkers? I started out right behind the leaders and talked myself into letting them go or I wouldn't be able to finish. My heart rate monitor on the closeup shot was reading 174--that's pretty much where it was for most of the race. I had to go with the heart rate monitor because I pressed the wrong button on my watch and didn't start the stopwatch. There were 5k, 10k and 15k splits marked on the course so I was able to check my time on the second and third 5k.
2nd 5k - 35:41
3rd 5k - 36:03

Not bad, I was close to my 12 minute per mile pace. But how did I do overall?
10 Miles - 1:54:35
Average Pace - 11:27 minutes per mile

That was the best 10 miles I ever walked. It was a tough course, some uphills and bridge crossings and one side of the course was a long gentle climb while the other side was gentle downhill. On the uphill side of the course I kept thinking that I wouldn't be able to finish the 10 miles and on the downhill side I was flying.

I ended up somewhere around 6th place but since it was split up into male/female and age groups, I actually won my age group. There was only one other male in my age group and, small world, he was one of my fellow classmates from Dave McGovern's racewalking clinic.

That's probably the best birthday present I ever got. There were some older men and a woman that finished way ahead of me, but I'm allowed to gloat on my birthday.

Let's not forget about my wife, Rosie. She took some photos and entered the 5k racewalk in the non-judged category.
5k - 45:36
Average Pace - 14:40 minutes per mile

Now she's hooked and wants to go to the weekend club workouts--that's fine by me!