Naughty or Nice 10K

Location: Wilmington, NC
Place: 3rd overall
Time: 40:06
Pace: 6:27 mpm

It had been 2 years, 3 months, and 11 days since I had run a 10K, and I was somewhat anxious when thinking about how I might do after having not raced is such a very long time. It was a chilly 35 degrees this morning, and I don’t like to run when it’s cold. Wah, wah, wah.

I wore Inov8 Bare-X 150s, 2XU calve sleeves, Lululemon shorts, CrossFit Invoke tee shirt, Moeben arm sleeves, Mizono hat, and Brooks mittens. My toes and fingers didn’t thaw until miles 5 and 5.5, respectively.

I didn’t wear a watch if for no other reason than I didn’t want to get caught up with my pace. My one and only goal was to breath no more frequently than every third step; thus, this was a race based solely on perceived effort.

The race started at about five minutes after 9. The horn sounded and the first place finisher took off, with the eventual second place finisher, Devin and me not too far behind. We ran about .2 mile and took a left turn – into a very strong headwind. I wanted to quit. I thought, “Just step to the side and walk back to the start. There’s no reason that you have to run this race.” I continued.

I could see Devin ahead of me the entire race, and I was catching up with him mile by mile. More in a moment.

I found my pace by mile 1.5, and even began to enjoy myself. I looked behind me a few times and there was never anyone in sight; thus, I didn’t feel compelled to push the pace.

At the 3-mile mark I thought, “I should’ve registered for the damn 5K.”

There were quite a few times when we ran directly into a very strong headwind, and I’m certain that it slowed down my pace. I found myself actually bending at the waist and looking at the ground. Huh? What about posture, lean, and lift?

I had constantly had Devin in my sights and was confident that I could catch him. Just past the 6-mile mark, we took a sharp right turn, ran around a cone, and then ran back. When Devin saw me catching him, he took off! Dammit! I probably wait too long for my finishing kick. He finished just 10 seconds ahead of me.

Jeff ran the 5K and finished 3rd in his age group. Our friends Scott and Kelly ran the 10K. Scott and I talked just before the start of the race and he told me that he’d ideally like to break 50 minutes. I talked with Devin briefly at the finish, and then ran back to find Scott. I found him just before the 6-mile mark and ran him to the finish. I was bound and determined that he would achieve his goal, but I knew he’d have to dig deep to do so. He finished in 49:45! I ran back to run in Kelly and found her at just about the same place as I had found Scott. Kelly also did a spectacular job and finished 4th in her age group.

I kinda enjoyed myself today. I’m kinda leaning toward actually running the Umstead Marathon.


Post-race beer. Served in a plastic cup.
Post-race beer. Served in a plastic cup.
Jeff, Paul, Kelly, and Scott
Jeff, Paul, Kelly, and Scott
Third place overall. Not too shabby.
Third place overall. Not too shabby.
Naughty. Not nice.
Naughty. Not nice.

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