Monday, October 21, 2013

K-State Homecoming 5K Race Report

Well since the tri season is over, so as the fall colors are starting to come out, that means road racing season!  I decided to jump in a small little gathering at K-State's campus this last Sunday.  In all, there were about 800 runners/walkers/drunk frat boys in costume on a nice sunny fall day.  This was on the campus of Kansas State and is a USATF certified course, so I plunked down my $25 dollars (for day-of registration) and it was going to a great cause, the Manhattan Veteran's Center.

I got to the Memorial stadium early to register, and warmed up a bit with a little running to the point I decided to get rid of the long sleeves and run in just my nice red Oakley singlet.  After about a mile and a half of warming up, I made my way back to the line area, just in time for some of the frat boys to "fake start" a few times with a whistle, which got old after about...once.  But the race director got up front and had a starter gun, and as luck would have it, I lined up right behind the eventual winners, both men and women.  After a few minutes, the gun went off and we were off.  As expected all the drunks took off at the front and made it to the first corner and started to walk.  So the other 750 people behind them had to dodge all kinds of cartoon characters. Fun times, fun times indeed.

The first mile clicked off fairly fast as I keep it steady and passed the few folks that went out too fast for their ability and trickled backwards.  The race took us down a street and then thru a dorm quad area, then back on to the road, which was kind of fun.  This would be the theme as we wound our way thru campus.  First mile: 6:04

The second mile doubled back and headed a bit down hill.  Just before the first mile I was passed by a guy running barefoot.  Not wearing that faddish, "five finger" shoes, actually barefoot!  I was not going to be beat by bare feet!  I chased him for quite a while.  I hit the second mile at 6:25.

I finally caught barefoot guy as he bent over to loose his breakfast, but as I came up on him I asked if he was good and he said "I'm fine" so I motored on.  I figured I better hurry up as my goal of a sub-20 might come and go, so I hit the downhill to the stadium and turned in a 6:34 mile.

The last .2 I cruised in to the stadium and saw 19:4X on the clock and sprinted the last 50 yards to mid field and across the line in a 19:54.  Well, mission accomplished!  After the run, I hung out with some of the Manhattan Tri Club folks, and I ended up getting 3rd place in the non-student division, and netted a $25 buck payday!  Whooot!  Don't tell the IRS! LOL.  But honestly, I was just looking for a nice medal, but still that is not too bad.  The majority of the Manhattan Tri Club did well here, so not too bad.  Overall, I had a good time, raced well and set a post-college PR for 5K, so all in all, it was good.  The race was well organized and well run, so can't complain.

Overall, if I am here next year, I'd run this race again, minus the frat boys of course!

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