2011 TC 10 Mile Race Report

>> Monday, October 03, 2011

Yesterday was the TC 10 Mile and the TC Marathon. It was Pharmie's TWELFTH STRAIGHT TC Marathon and my 3rd straight TC 10 Mile. Last year, this was my big "A-race," and I hit my sub-60 goal with a finish time of 59:05. This year, with Henry and my new job in the mix, I knew I couldn't break that time. As I posted last week, I figured I'd finish between 1:00:00 and 1:02:15.

Speaking of Henry... he was awake just after me yesterday morning - I was up at 5 and he was up around 5:20. I fed him a bit, and then he barfed all over my race shirt:

Henry's Grandma took the 4 of us racing to the Metrodome early in the AM: Pharmie was doing the marathon, and my 2 brother-in-laws Matt and Mike were doing the 10 mile with me. It was MIKE'S FIRST ROAD RACE EVER!!! And he was starting with a 10 miler!! After we got dropped off, Grandma and Henry got out on the course around mile 9.5 to cheer. Here's Henry and his race sign:

It's true: we found out the next day that Pharmie was pregnant!

I got in line for the pooper at the Metrodome, chatted with my family a bit, bumped into lots of old and new friends, and worked my way to corral #1. There, I spotted even MORE friends, including Pharmie's smiling face on the edge of the corral! I chatted with lots of people, and racing buddy Cliff said he was hoping to finish in 1:01:XX which meant going out a little hard and slowing up around mile 6 when there are some uphill stretches. I said "Holy cats! That's my plan too! Let's run this thing together!"


I was too far back. D'oh. Cliff was jumping around people, and so was I. I had lost him a number of times, but we ended up side-by-side around mile 1. I was darting in-and-out of "traffic," and I ran on the curb for a block to pass a big group.

· Mile 1: 6:05
"A BIT of a faster start than last year, but I know this won't last!"

The next mile was still downhill too, so I figured these might be my 2 fastest miles for a while. I wanted them to be fast, BUT I didn't want to go too hard and die later on. I was already breathing pretty hard. I was a bit worried.

· Mile 2: 6:08
"OK. Not bad. Keep that breathing in check."

The next mile goes uphill along the river, then up a quick, steep little hill as we get onto a bridge to cross to the St. Paul side of the Mississippi. Going up that hill, I decided to "attack" the hill. Immediately, I thought "What the hell are you doing? You can't be 'ATTACKING' hills with your reduced training this year! Back off, big boy!" I wasn't trying to be negative, I was just trying to NOT make a horrible decision that would kill me in the end. So I backed off a bit, but not really until the last 1/4 of the hill.

· Mile 3: 6:13
"That's good for the big uphill section. Now pick it up a bit."

I enjoyed the flats along the river. I heard a couple of cheers for "Steve in a Speedo!" Thanks! This was where I did the majority of my training runs, so I was comfortable here. And it showed in my time....

· Mile 4: 6:03
"Nice. Maintain this."

I was being a lot more chatty this year compared to last year where I was "all business." I asked others how they were doing, said "good morning" a lot, etc. Oh, and Cliff was still just about 2 seconds in front of me! We were working out our race plan!

· Mile 5: 6:17
· First 5 Miles: 30:49

"If I can hold this, I've got my sub-1:02 goal. Even if I let some of the next miles slip away a bit..."

I was ready for some slowed miles. I don't know if it's ME (my racing style), or if it's the deceptive uphills in the next few miles that have made my splits slow the last 2 times I've raced this. I knew my times were going to drop, but I tried to push it.

My legs felt OK, my breathing wasn't too bad, and what hurt the most was the bottom of my feet. They were starting to scream!

· Mile 6: 6:32
"Ohhh.... that's quite a drop. Shit. Just keep working, Steve!"

This is the depressing time for me in a 10 mile. I'm hurting, but there's still a few miles to go. I think my times MIGHT drop here because of my "metal" issues, and NOT because there's a slight uphill.

· Mile 7: 6:25
"Double shit. That should have been faster. GO STEVE! NOW!!"

TRUTH TIME: I should have gone faster in those last 2 miles. I was taking it too easy on myself. I wasn't sure how much I could work through, so instead of pushing the limit, I just kept it a little easier. I don't feel like I "failed," but I'm not happy that I kept it so easy. (And really, it wasn't EASY - it just wasn't as hard as it could have been.)

So there was never a moment where I thought I'd have to walk. I thought I might go too hard and have to walk a bit, but I kept my pace easier than that. I actually thought I could really start to go hard at this point. There was still plenty left "in the tank."

· Mile 8: 6:03
"You're feeling OK. Can you go sub-6 for the final 2 miles? Averaging 6:05 / mile for these last 2 miles will keep you under 1:02!!"

I went hard. I kept passing people, and I smiled and urged many to follow me. One guy was really breathing hard / weird. It sounded like Pharmie in labor. No joke. I just said "good morning" to him and moved on.

· Mile 9: 6:02
"Oh, you've GOT sub-1:02 in the bag! Now GO HARD! ALL OUT! NOW!"

Last year at this point, I was fighting the urge to walk. (But I was also over 2:00 faster at this point.) This year, I felt like I had lots left to give. I didn't really think I had TOO much left, but I knew I had enough left to go FAST! I hit the 9th mile marker, and I literally cranked it up a notch. I found another gear and went hard.

I hadn't even spotted my in-laws (or Henry) in the distance before I heard my sister-in-law Annie shouting "GOOOOOO STEEEEEEEEVE!!!"

So I gave them a wave and thanked them for cheering:

Too much of a heel-strike. Dang.

I felt like I was f-l-y-i-n-g!!

Oh, that's some sweet swass-marks forming!

I really, really, really, really, really felt like I was flying. I hit the line, and my final mile split showed that I had TOO MUCH LEFT in the tank:

· Mile 10: 5:27
"Umm, sure, that's a 'downhill' mile that's always pretty fast, but that's FASTER than my 5K PR pace!!"
(I ran that closing mile in 5:40 in 2009, and 5:36 in 2010.)


1:01:20 chip time
6:08 per mile pace
21st out of 506 in the 30-34 age group
139th out of 7548 overall
30:49 first 5 miles / 30:31 second 5 miles (unofficially)

That's right where I predicted I would finish in my post last week!! I was happy with that! (I was 42nd last year and 95th 2 years ago [with a slower time], but I realized that this year the 10 Mile Championships Race was considered part of this race, so lots of other speedy, speedy people were tallied in the same race as me.)

Cliff was just about 30 seconds behind me! I lost track of him at mile 7, and I figured that I passed him at an aid station. He said he tried to stay with me for a mile, but then he fell off the pace. We chatted a bit in the finisher's area, and lots of other friends found me to say "hi" too! FUN TIMES!

I started to cool-down a bit, and I heard someone shout my name. It was speedster and Runner's World cover model Michelle Frey. She was cooling down with 2 other ladies, and they had all just done the 10 mile in 56:00 or FASTER! One of the women was THEE Meghan Peyton (Armstrong) who had just finished 6th in the 10 Mile in 55:09 and has a 15:41 5K PR! I talked with them for a bit and then warmed-down a mile with them:

Michelle was next to me, and that's Meghan to the right

I'll have more about Pharmie's race and my brother-in-laws' races later this week!

We all headed back to Pharmie's and my place, and I grilled for everyone:

Brats, sliders, and turkey burgers!

I MAY have been grilling outside in front of all of my neighbors
in my "bowl full of sunshine" shorty-shorts...

Like I said, there will soon be more on Pharmie's Marathon, Matt's 3rd 10 Mile, and Mike's FIRST road race EVER! Oh, AND there are some "farm animal" photos coming up too. Here's a little something to wet your whistle....

This is actually part of a VIDEO that I hope to have edited shortly....

Check back for more soon!! Have a great week!!


Alecia@tincantreader 8:07 AM, October 03, 2011  

Oh, man. I am so excited to see some farm animals.

Great race!

Chad 8:11 AM, October 03, 2011  

Nice race. You looked strong going up the hill to St. Thomas.

And the 3rd gal is Emily Brown - she only sports a 15:19 5K PR.

Kurt @ Becoming An Ironman 9:31 AM, October 03, 2011  

Pulling out a 5:27 at the end of a 10 miler?! Impressive!, even if it was downhill.

You definitely pulled together at the end and pulled it off. Congrats!

TriMOEngr 9:35 AM, October 03, 2011  

It blows my mind that you don't podium with splits like that. Serious speed out there! Love that you were Mr. Social out there and rockin' that Bowl Full of Sunshine. And the farm animals are the BEST!! Thanks for my current state of grinning.

Carolina John 11:11 AM, October 03, 2011  

Great finish time Steve! You really pulled a decent race out with a couple of slow miles in the middle there. Can't wait to see the video!

Anonymous,  6:11 PM, October 03, 2011  

I have not done TCM since 1990, but i might have to next year just to see the farm animals.

Richelle 1:14 AM, October 07, 2011  

What an awesome finish time, and way to pick up the pace for the final miles! Congrats!

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