Here is my most recent race, the Brea 8k (5 miles).
I ran 33:58 and was 5th out of 55 in the 60-64 age group. I was 204th out of 2271 and ran this race with only a week of easy running
leading up to the race due to injury and illness for most of February. My watch said 6:57 pace but the Race Computer said it was 7:02 which means that there is some discrepancy between the GPS watch and the certified course measurement. My watch had it at 5.03 miles. I think a certified 8k is counted as only 4.97 miles. I was wearing 2 GPS watches, the other had it at 5.017 miles.
Horribly Long Version:
( some of the detail I go into here is really meant for current and former runner friends )
I'd had a strained Hamstring for most of the month coming off of my fastest Track workout to date and had also come down with a cold after I had taken a couple of days off for the injury. After an additional 5 days off due to the cold, I thought I was healed. Wrong, after 2 easy days (2 miles/8:00 pace) Hamstring re-strained again. This is the way the month went. I pre regisered for the race a couple of days before so I could be officially on our New Basin Blues Grandmasters (over 50 ) team. Pre registering is a jinx for me, usually register the morning of the race. So I get 3 hours of sleep, get out of bed and my left calf is tight and sore. Why, I don't know, ran easy all week. Get to the race and they force us to park about a 1/4 mile away when there is a huge parking area in front of Macy's right next to the race area that remained empty even after the Mall opened. There was a rain forecast which was accurate but it rained before 7:00 am and then leading up to the race it was on and off very light sprinkles but didn't rain at all from the race Start at 8:00 am until more sprinkles after about 8:45.
The only warm up I got was running back and forth to & from the car partly because of being too out of shape I didn't want to add more distance for the day and was planning to just run easy the first mile of the race and partly because I wasted warm up time picking up my packet and talking to friends. The group of us trying to decide what we would wear, tights, shorts, etc..., would it start raining, etc... I ran back to the car , seemed to be getting warmer, decided to go with normal shorts and racing top. Changed, put the number on my top and racing shoes on and ran back to the starting area where it seems that they started the race about 2 min early.
We were concerned about the temperature but I think it wasn't bad, sunny and about 59 by race time is my guess.
I was behind all 2271 people and never heard the start horn, (heard the starter ask walkers and people with strollers to move further back and not block the runners) didn't know the race had started and then had to work my way through a lot of walkers and slow runners just to get to the starting line where the Chip Timing began as I crossed the start line. I was able to figure out that I started 1:08 after the people at the front of the starting line resulting in not being able to run with any of my club mates that I'd planned to join. Now I'm running around people and finally on to the sidewalk so I could pass people while dodging onlookers here and there and then back on to the street where I ran on the traffic side of the cones for a while just continually passing people from the beginning to the end of the race. I started faster than intended (6:48 first mile) but my calf had loosened up by then and didn't bother me at all. The Hamstring felt ok until a little past halfway and was re-strained for sure with a mile to go which I ran in about 6:26 to 6:29 depending on which of my GPS watches you believe. The course had a fair amount of hills but was downhill over most of the last approx. 1- 1/2 miles . After stopping, the Hamstring became too tight to even warm down which I tried for about 200 yards.
(For non runners), that extra 1:08 was not included in my time because of electronic chip timing meaning that many people who actually crossed the Finish ahead of me actually ran slower than me and I did get credited with running faster and my placing which contributed to our Grandmasters Team (age over 50) taking 2nd place. All teams were co-ed requiring at least one female runner.
Our female runner is 72 ! We also took 2nd in the Masters Team (40-49) and could have won the Open if we had another of our young fast guys show up. Below is a table of all our members that ran the race. Congratulations to all of the Blues ! Great to have the speedy Paul Van Zuyle as a Basin Blue Grandmaster (in the post race photo with me) 1st photo= final mile, 2nd photo = 2 miles into race.