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February 05, 2007

Winter Beaches Run 2007

Wbr07What’s a gel worth?  A couple of minutes at the end of a 10–mile run?  That’s what I have to wonder as I look back at yesterday’s Winter Beaches Run. 

The goal was to run 7:30 splits, nice and steady.  Last year I shot out running 7:00 – 7:15 splits, only to explode and finish at a 7:36 average pace.  The first mile, as always, I got caught in the surge and ran a little faster than I wanted.  After passing the first marker in 7:10, I slowed it down a bit and did the next mile in 7:36.  Closer to the goal.  I stayed on pace until the 7th mile.  Then the slowdown began.  I have to believe if I had taken a gel atthe halfway point, I could’ve finished stronger.  My hip started to nag me as well, but I’m not sure if that was enough to sabotage my race.  I tried 15–second surges on the minute during mile 9 to try to reel some folks in, but couldn’t sustain the effort.  I finished in 1:16:33, 36 seconds slower than last year’s 1:15:57. 

I did run a much smarter race this year, but in the end, I think nutrition was the difference.  Aside from not using a gel, the only meals I had prior to the race included Grape Nuts for breakfast and a Clif Bar an hour before the race.  Although Karen and I had to keep nursery at church yesterday morning, I still thought I would have a chance to eat lunch.  I also thought the race started at 3 pm.  Nope, 2 pm start.

Next year I will have a gel and I will know what time the race starts!