MRTC RRS 10K #1 Recap

Standard

Sunday was the first 10K in the 2014 MRTC Road Race Series.  The 10K’s are held at Shelby Farms, which might be the best course and worst parking combo in the entire series.  This year’s course did deviate from previous years because Shelby Farms is undergoing substantial renovations.  The fact that the course was different was mentioned. Repeatedly. In fact, it got to the point that I just wanted the guy to shut up and let us run.

This is the timing chip for this year's event.

This is the timing chip for this year’s event.

Side note: the entire series carries a hubris that is somewhat off-putting to new runners.  I have never run this race before, so I have no clue where the course used to go, so referencing the changes on the course based on the previous course does not give me any idea where I should actually go. I get that several of the runners in the series are repeat runners, but obviously they all are not, so at least give us rookies some tangible direction.

The weather finally cooperated for this race, and we enjoyed running in 60-70 degree temperatures.  The humidity was still high, but it is Memphis, so that is to be expected.  The course was mainly in the park, but due to the construction, we did log some time outside of the park.  The early stages of the race were congested, as usual, but it seemed like there were fewer people at this race than the previous ones.  This might be the trend with the distances increasing, other fall races starting, and football season getting in full swing.  I guess we shall see.

Parking was a nightmare.  And not because there was a lack a spaces, but rather where the parking was.  Runners were required to park along the race course, which was a logistical nightmare.  Just imagine 500 runners still on the course as the other 500 are trying to get into their cars and drive along the course to get home.  It does not go that smoothly.  I get that there are space issues currently in the park, but communicating for this could have been handled better.

The 2014 MRTC RRS race shirt

The 2014 MRTC RRS race shirt

Race shirts for the series were handed out at this event as well.  The shirts are moisture wicking, but they honestly feel more like a cotton shirt than a traditional tech shirt.  I am going to use it at boot camp and see how it does.

MRTC Second 5 Miler Recap

Standard
This is the timing chip for this year's event.

This is the timing chip for this year’s event.

On Sunday was the second 5 miler in the MRTC Road Race Series.  And despite my best efforts and the prodding of Susan, I am still on pace to achieve Road Warrior status for the series.  I had a friend in town over the weekend, and decided that it was a great idea to drink heavily on Saturday.  All of Saturday, so running 5 miles in the heat and humidity was not the highest on my list of priorities on Sunday.  In fact, I was a little concerned about how dehydrated I was.  I would have stayed in bed all morning if if were not for Susan kicking me in the ass and convincing me to go to the race.  Thanks for that, Susan!

This was basically what my run was like

This was basically what my run was like.

Once I started my run, my fears proved not to be warranted.  I felt decent, and ran rather well.  I was 3 minutes slower than the first 5 miler, but I did feel good.  Of course, the race was not quite as hot as the previous one, nor was it as hot as the Hit and Run 5K the day prior.  I did not collapse on the course and had no cramping issues, so that was a successful race in my mind.  And as a bonus, I found a very strong hangover cure, running 5 miles in the Memphis heat and humidity!

Sorry for the short post, but I have quite a bit of work to finish up before traveling to Disneyland and the upcoming races/weekend. Good luck to everyone else that is running this weekend! Be safe, stay hydrated, and enjoy yourself! 

MRTC RRS 5 Miler #1

Standard

This morning was the third race in the Memphis Runners Track Club Race Series, and it was my first ever 5 miler race.  And just the last two races, this morning’s race was hot and humid. But unlike the race two weeks ago, I was better prepared for the humidity this morning.  That does not mean that it was a particularly comfortable run, but I did run five strong miles and have something let in the tank for another run tonight.

The 5 miler is held at W. J. Freeman park in Bartlett so the course is not nearly as close to my house as the 5K’s are, but the parking was much better.  The course is mostly neighborhood streets with the finish coming on the walking path at the park.  And there is more shade throughout the course, which certainly helps on these humid days.

Run 365 group photo at the race

Run 365 group photo at the race

A few less runners completed the course today when compared to the 5K’s, but there still was 1,200 people running today, several of which are still aspiring to achieve Road Warrior status.  Managing the crowds early in the race is as big of a challenge as the heat and humidity for these events.  The course had several turns which led to some bottle-necking early on and towards the end, we had to dodge several of the faster finishers that thought that returning to their car via the race course was a prudent move.  It was not, but oh well.

This is the timing chip for this year's event.

This is the timing chip for this year’s event.

Best news about this morning’s race is that I set a PR with my 50:17 finish! Of course, no matter how fast I ran, it would have been a PR since this was my first attempt at a 5 mile race.  This is an odd distance, and I will not have many opportunities to beat this mark.  Maybe I can do even better in two weeks at the second MRTC RRS 5 Miler.

MRTC Road Race Series 5K #2

Standard
This is the timing chip for this year's event.

This is the timing chip for this year’s event.

This morning was the second race, and second 5K in the Memphis Runners Track Club Road Race Series.  And while the temperature was not quite as high as 2 weeks ago, the humidity was absolutely oppressive.  By the end of the race, I looked like I had completed a 5K in a pool, not the street.  Add this to my miscalculation not to drive to the event, but rather run/jog/walk to it, and I had a miserable morning.

I had my doubts

I had my doubts

I decided to go to the race on foot because I needed a long day according to my training plan, so I thought that adding the 2.5 miles each way to the venue plus the race, and I would almost have my mileage done.  Instead, it accelerated my sweating process, and after mile 1 of the race, the wheels fell off.  I ended up run/walking to my worst 5K finish in 3 years.  There was not a dry stitch of clothing on my body, including my shoes and socks  And I still had to get home!

This was me

This was me today.

In the end, I finished close to the same spot as I did 2 weeks ago, so I am guessing that I am not the only person that was sacked by the humidity.  I am, however, 1/5 of the way towards the coveted road warrior status, and will hopefully run stronger in 2 weeks for the first 5 mile race of the series.

MRTC Road Race Series 5K #1

Standard

This morning was the first of ten races in the Memphis Runners Track Club Road Race Series.  So from now until the middle of November, I will be running in races associated with this series.  Today was a 5K, and the next race in 2 weeks will also be a 5K on the same course.  It is a no frills race series, but it is a testament to your dedication to complete all ten and achieve road warrior status.

This is the timing chip for this year's event.

This is the timing chip for this year’s event.

This morning was hot and humid.  It felt like I was running through soup.  I do not have an official time, but my Nike+ watch recorded my run at 29:20, so my time should be near that.  There were over 1,500 announced runners there this morning, and I saw bibs numbers even higher than that.  The crowd was only bad for the first half mile or so, and then we tended to separate out to a manageable level.  Overall, it was a good run today despite the heat and humidity.

There isn’t really much more to say about the run being that it was a no frills 5K with rolling hills.  There were two water stops along the course and fruit, water, Nuun, and cookies available at the finish.

Aiming For Road Warrior

Standard

Every year here in Memphis the Memphis Runners Track Club (our local running club that I recently joined) hosts a Road Race Series.  The series starts in July and ends in November.  The event consists of two each of the 5K, 5 Miler, 10K, 10 Miler, and Half Marathon race distances.  It is a good way to fill up the calendar with races, run in some areas of town I normally do not, and will save me some green since I am getting ten races for $65 with my MRTC discount.

I immediately think of this anytime I hear Road Warrior! The Road Warriors from the WWF (now WWE)

I immediately think of this anytime I hear Road Warrior! The Road Warriors from the WWF (now WWE)

To complete the series you have to complete at least one of each of the race distances.  Anyone that completes all ten races will achieve Road Warrior status.  I am aiming for Road Warrior status.  Last year I had conflicts on a couple of the race dates, and therefore did not register for the series because Road Warrior was not attainable.  Why attempt it if I cannot go 100%?  According to the MRTC Facebook page, only about 13-14% of the registered runners achieve Road Warrior status.  This was a little surprising at first glance, but then when you think about what can happen between July 13 and November 16.  Injuries, sickness, vacation, poor weather, apathy, hangovers, and a whole host of other reasons may come up over the five month span of the series.

MRTC

There is not a ton of swag with the event.  There will be no medal for any of the races, or even the series as a whole.  This is more about running locally with other hardcore and/or dedicated Memphis runners.  It should be fun!

Quick Update: I’m Not Dead!

Standard

It has been over a week since my last post, and first, I want to assure everyone that I am still here, plugging away!  The hills of Nashville did not consume me!  This is the last week of the semester and I have quite a bit of work left to do.  Some of this is due to my procrastination, and some is just the nature of grad school.  Also, some of it is due to the Memphis Grizzlies being in the playoffs.  So, as I take a mental break from my 30 page paper and budgeting assignment, I thought that I would do a quick update on what is going on.

First, I completed my 4th half marathon in 41 days in Nashville when I ran the Country Music Half Marathon.  It was a fun event and a full recap will be coming later this week or early next week.  But for now, I want to share the medal with y’all.  It actually looked better in person than I thought it would.

2014 Country Music Half Marathon Medal

2014 Country Music Half Marathon Medal

Second, a couple of months ago I was chosen to be a FitFluencial Ambassador, which mean I will have the opportunity to review some products, techniques, or events throughout the year.  My first couple of reviews from this partnership will be coming very soon.

Third, Monday I finally joined a local running club here in Memphis.  I joined the Memphis Runners Track Club, which is the major running club here in town.  I only did a 1 year membership because I want to see what it is all about.  I am certain that I will post more about this in the near future as well.

MRTC

And one last thing, Go Grizz!  Tonight, at 7:00 PM CST, the Grizzlies will host the Oklahoma City Thunder, here at the Grindhouse.  If you cannot be there, watch on TV.  And look for the battle between Tony Allen and Kevin Durant, which pits the league’s premier perimeter defender against the league’s premier pure scorer. It has been fun thus far.