Sunday, July 19, 2009

Toronto 10 Miler Race Report

This morning I participated in my fifth race, ever. This was the Toronto Ten Miler, and I was running it as part of my training for my first marathon. The weather could not have been better, and in the end (despite some apathy and reservations on my part) I had a great time and hit all my goals.

I woke up at 6am and got ready to go with a piece of toast, some Gatorade, and foam rolling, stretching, all that good stuff. Then I got on my bike and rode down to Broadview Subway station, from which I was hoping to catch a streetcar that would conveniently drop me off close to the Start/Finish area. I did all this because I was planning to run a bit after the race to make up some mileage and to cool down, so having a ride back from the race would likely mean no more running. Anyway, when I got to the station just before 7am the streetcar that was supposed to leave on the hour was just arriving. Perfect timing, or so I thought. Instead it sat there for fifteen annoying minutes, all the while me sitting and waiting, wondering if I should just bike all the way down to the race area. Then the streetcar pulled out and I was on my way. A tonne of other runners were getting on at almost every stop so I knew this was the right move.

Once I got to the Start/Finish area I had to go to the SportStats tent to pick up my timing chip. This was the first time in my short experience that the timing chip was not included in the race packet and I thought it added unnecessary complexity to the entire process. It went smoothly enough, however, and all was good. I then went for a 1k warm up, which felt pretty good, and proceeded to line up at the porta-potty line. A couple of non-runners snuck into the line right in front of me, and I stood there wondering how anyone not running the race could possibly feel comfortable standing in line to use washrooms that were clearly set up for the use of runners who'd registered to run the race! I felt like saying, "Give it ten more minutes and you will have no lineup." I didn't get the chance since another runner came by and told us of another washroom, not the portable kind, open and just around the corner. Sweet! Off I went and then I was at the Start area with five minutes to spare.

As usual the crowd was completely disregarding the corral designations and I knew I'd have to weave through traffic for a bit to get clear at the beginning of the race. I made smalltalk with a few other runners for a bit, and then it was time to go.

My goal was to run at my theoretical planned marathon pace: 4:54/km. As I've mentioned in other posts, this is based on my 45-minute 10k best time. In essence I was using this race both as a decent tempo run, and as a test to see if this pace was anywhere near realistic for me. As I started off I had to slow myself way down since the rush of the crowd and those good race feelings made me run way faster than I should have been. By the first kilometre marker I had settled into a nice groove and was feeling good.

Nothing really happened to report on during the race itself other than me not having any sort of technique that works for drinking water or Gatorade out of those paper cups. I crushed, I scrunched, I did everything I could, and yet I continued to spill water all over myself. To avoid having massive colourful stains I walked through the stations the two times I chose Gatorade. In the end those ended up being my slowest splits, though still on target.

Cutting to the chase, here are the splits as recorded by Garmin:

  1. 4:48.07
  2. 4:46.31
  3. 4:50.56
  4. 4:53.74
  5. 4:52.47
  6. 4:52.16
  7. 4:54.39 (first Gatorade pause)
  8. 4:50.02
  9. 4:47.36
  10. 4:50.25
  11. 4:54.25 (second Gatorade pause)
  12. 4:47.53
  13. 4:46.04
  14. 4:45.97
  15. 4:45.16
  16. 4:36.37
  17. 0:53.80 (3:55/km pace for the last 228m)
The official stats go like this:

  • Gun Time: 1:19:09
  • Chip Time: 1:17:53
  • Pace: 4:50/km (based on Chip Time, 7:47/mile)
  • Place Overall: 389/1724
  • Gender Place: 314/892
  • Category Place: 58/152 (though they had me in the wrong age group)
I then ran back to where I'd locked my bike to make the mileage add up to a total of 21km on the day. This was completed in 1:49:12 of running time for an overall average pace of 5:12/km (8:22/mile). I won't even try to decipher the heart rate, but during the race it pretty much remained steady in the low 160s. I think this was great considering that not so long ago trying to hold this pace would have meant a heart rate up in the mid 170s and, therefore, not tempo range at all. I had a great time, hit all my goals, and it looks like my training is still on track for the marathon.

Now I must off to coach another baseball game!

Garmin don't lie.

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Blogger Marci said...

Great job Vava! Did you like the route?

July 19, 2009 at 6:29 PM  
Blogger Boris T. said...

Great work with the 10miler, I was there myself, but just running a bit slower then you.

I know what you're saying about the portable toilets, some people just don't respect others. Same with drivers who try to drive through the course, not today mind you, but on other races I've seen it.

July 19, 2009 at 8:14 PM  
Blogger Marlene said...

Congrats on the 10-miler! Excelent time.

July 19, 2009 at 9:00 PM  
Blogger Andrew(ajh) said...

Well done - pretty good split times there - very even (allowing for the drinks).

July 20, 2009 at 4:35 AM  
Blogger The Happy Runner said...

Way to go! Great job!!!

July 20, 2009 at 7:40 PM  
Blogger Ace said...

Great job V.

"had a great time" and "hit all my goals"

wow and you didn't get rained on? are you sure this really happened? grats.

the marathon is looking good!

July 21, 2009 at 11:47 AM  
Blogger chris mcpeake said...

Looks like you had a pretty good race. Congrats. Was a really nice day for a race.

July 21, 2009 at 4:26 PM  
Blogger Nitmos said...

Awesome, dude, Congratulations! You bested your planned marathon pace. You are right on target!!

July 22, 2009 at 11:19 AM  
Blogger Andrew is getting fit said...

That's a pretty great pace! Well done.

July 27, 2009 at 4:17 AM  

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