Raspberry Run 1 Mile RACE REPORT

>> Monday, July 17, 2017

Yesterday was a 1 mile race that was part of the USATF MN series: the Hopkins "Raspberry Run" 1 Mile. The race was at noon (just before a parade on the same route), and I got to the race site at 11 just as they were starting the 5 mile race:

Leaders taking off just 1 block into the Raspberry Run 5 Miler.

I fueled up for the race the night before at my bro- and sis-in-law's place: Jon smoked ribs:

My first plate. Then I had more ribs and macaroni.
THEN I had more ribs and macaroni and a brat. Thanks Steph and Jon!

The kids with sparklers at the end of the night (in suits from the slip-n-slide!).

I didn't get my traditional porta-potty pre-race selfie, but here's one of me outside of the
bathroom in the hockey arena that served as home base for the race. Hope this is good enough.

I bumped into former-student Jeremy and we chatted a bit as I stretched. I saw teammate Jamie go past, so I went to warm-up with him and Nicole from my gym. We noted the 1/4 mile marks on this straight point-to-point race course:

Warming up running the course from finish to start. This is looking back
toward the start around the 0.7 mile mark. Pretty flat and very straight!

My final check of the temp before leaving my phone in my car 24 mins pre-race.
It was warm and a bit humid, but not HORRIBLE.

My only real goal (as I posted about on Saturday) was to try to keep my time under 5:00 and NOT have a "PW" (or "personal worst") of over 5:00.70. Teammate Jamie was hoping to just run under 5 as well, so we hung together as we got lined up.

SIDENOTE: Jamie and I first met during the 2014 TC 10 Mile when I ran it as part of the "Loony Challenge." We ended up running about half that race together (see photos in that link), and then we bumped into each other at the YWCA where we both work out. Now, we're running on their running team. Awesome!

Jamie and I lined up right behind the first row of racers nice and near the front! I told him I didn't want to make the same mistake that I made during the Brian Kraft 5K two months ago when I lined up too far back and had trouble getting around people in the first mile. We were RIGHT where we needed to be: between the men (on the right) and the women (on the left) right in the middle of the road. When the gun went off, the speedy men on the right took off in front of us, but we didn't impede anyone.

"ON YOUR MARKS......" *airhorn noises*

Everyone SHOT out from the start, and Jamie shot in front of me. The pace was FAST. It's amazing how quickly the FAST runners put a full city block between them and me. Wowza. I set my Garmin to 0.25 mile splits (which was how we figured out the rough 1/4 landmarks pre-race), so I had lots of pace info.

• FIRST 1/4 MILE: 1:12.01. "Yep, that's fast. Hold on." The runners were nicely spread out, and we were all running "our own race." I caught up to Jamie and said "fast start!"

• SECOND 1/4 MILE: 1:16.07. "Well, I gave a little of that 'sub-5 cushion' back, so let's keep the pace fast here!" This part of the race just after the half way point was pretty strong. We sort of went out and (mostly) held the same positions for the first half of the race, but in this 1/4 mile, I caught a handful of runners. Oh, and the slight breeze slapped us in the face which felt like a MAJOR slowdown (even though I'm sure it wasn't - more of a mental than physical thing I think).

• THIRD 1/4 MILE: 1:16.62. "If I can be faster than that 1/4 heading to the finish, I have sub-5!" I went hard. There was a little jockeying in this last 1/4 mile, but nothing bad - I seemingly flew past someone only to have someone else fly past me. Lots of different speeds in this final kick. I also heard cheers for me and Jamie a few times, so I knew he was close! I was hoping to help pull him to sub-5. Or he could pull me to sub-5. We just both wanted to get there.

Rose's pic of me and Jamie with 1-block left. The flag is pointing at me, and Jamie's just
a bit behind me. (And the 2 women in the foreground are 5-milers getting passed.)

Close-up of Jamie and me. My face says it all. And yes, I was wearing the tiny
"bowl full of sunshine" 1970s track shorts. It was hot. They were a good choice.

• FOURTH 1/4 MILE: 1:13.26. "Boom. Sub-5. Now let me lean on this table and try not to barf."

My Garmin (which I started with the gun) had me at 4:57.96!!


Steve Stenzel, M, 30-39

29th out of 347 overall
29th out of 188 men
6th out of 25 in the 39-39 age group


• Officially, it was my 2nd slowest 1 mile, and I'm 100% OK with that! Only my FIRST mile at the 2008 Charities Challenge track meet was slower at 5:00.7. And twice (most recently 18 months ago), I've ran 4:56.6, which formerly was my 2nd slowest. With all the slower run training I've been doing lately (slower to deal with and/or avoid injuries, and while biking a LOT more), I was just happy to break 5! Truly!

• Jamie's official results have him at 5:00 flat. Dang. SOOO close to sub-5. I bet he was sub-5 if they showed tenths of a second (like 4:59.7), but ChronoTrack rounds up. (I don't care for ChronoTrack results, and their triathlon results are crap to navigate through. And you can't even search their website for previous results. I mean, come on! Race directors: stop using ChronoTrack!)

• This was the first year this race was part of the USATF circuit, and the results hilariously show that. I didn't know that was the case before a few days ago. So I went to look at the results from the last few years last week just to see what the times were like. My time yesterday in 2014, 15, and 16 would have placed me 4th, 6th, and 7th (not 29th like yesterday). I laughed and closed the results on my computer thinking "well, that's going to look a LOT different this year, so these past results can't teach me anything." Bring in a "handful" of USATF racers, and suddenly I'm knocked back a FEW places. (Also, the men's record was broken by 1 second, and the women's record was CRUSHED by 20 seconds! The lead female was ahead of me for most of the race.)

• This was a pretty uneventful "normal" race for me. I started a BIT hard, but not crazy. Then I just held on. It hurt, but as I told teammate Quinn pre-race who was running his first 1-mile race, "1 miles hurt more than 5Ks, but the hurt is also over a lot quicker." (So I think 5Ks are worse.) Post-race, Quinn told me I was 100% right.

• We had 5 guys which was the minimum to score for a team. The "YWCA Endurance Sports Team" finished like this: Steve Stenzel, 4:58; James Brand, 5:00; Geoffrey Tong, 5:18; Jacob Scheckman, 5:42; and Quinn Cordo, 6:43. Nice work, team!

I stood at the edge of a giant spray of water to cool down after I finished. I found an album on Facebook from last year's race that showed the sweet, cold spray that the firemen had out there for us. Here are 3 photos from that album that showed how we all cooled down post-race:

The finish is just in front of the firetruck with racers coming this way in the distance.

I chatted with a few race buddies and then jogged a little cool-down back to my car.

Sweaty faced after my cool down and a successful race. My eyes look tired. Because I was tired.

Looking down the middle of the race course 20 minutes after it started. There were lots of
spectators lining up for the parade that was going to start shortly. Lots of cowbell.

Stretching in the shade post-race.

Main street really starting to fill up as I was heading home.

Happy with my 4:58 and 2nd slowest 1 mile. Time for an easier swim today. Back with more soon!


Emily W 9:00 AM, July 17, 2017  

I'm kind of sad that this race is more competitive now. I ran it a few years ago and ended up winning my AG with an 8:07 - LOL. It was fun!

SteveQ 10:49 AM, July 17, 2017  

I have a pic of Bob Kempainen winning the 5 mile (ca 1986), with the sprinklers going and the sign at the gas station shows gas was $0.54 per gallon!

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