Jeremy Hopwood

Jeremy Hopwood

Sunday, January 11, 2009

How I Became Walter

Pioneer 8km Race Report - Jan 11th 2009 - Saanichton, Vancovuer Island
BC 8km Road Championships

Result 27:52 (34th overall) (10th in Age Group)
(Avg 3:29 min km = 5:37 min miles)

Winners Time (Richard Mosley 23:35)

Last year I didn't do a lot of running races because I didn't trust myself to still give it the day before training. Add to that it was my first year of tri really wanted to focus on the first two ingredients of the omelet.

Anyway this year as you can see by my race calender I have a lot more races, however if they are C's like today was I plan to train straight through.

Day before

So the race report starts with the day before, was updating the club website on Friday Night on an extremely slow internet connection till late then had difficulties with my internet connection so skipped the early morning swim and run that was planned and focused on fixing that. So enough of excuses hopped on he trainer for 2.5 hours and did at 45 minute brick so felt good with the day.

Pre Race Dinner meal - Bacon and Egg Focaccia and hashbrowns

Pre Race

Sunday morning woke up at 5, loaded the car and drove to the 7am ferry. Paid my $10 for parking :( and hopped on the bike with my newtons and 25 layers of clothes and boarded the ferry (Another $10). Pre race breakfast of belgian waffles with frozen berries and some weird cream concoction courtesy of bc ferries (Another $10)

Ferry gets in and then begin my first outdoor ride of 2009. When I left home thought should pump up tires, when I got on ferry thought should pump up tires, when I got of ferry thought should pump up tires. After 10km acttualy pumped up tires. Cruisy 15km ride in 40 minutes and at race venue.

After locking up bike registered and got my geasr in order, changed into race gear and warmup clothes and decided to start to focus on a pre race routine. First real shot at this but went like this;

T - 45 minutes went for 15 minute run
T - 30 minutes popped a GU
T - 25 min last bathroom break
T -20 minutes take of warm up clothes
T - 15 minutes dynamc warmup

Felt good after all this so will use this going forward and adapt over time. If I am driving to the race may extend the warmup run though to 30 min

The Actual Race Report

This was an all star field by BC standards from what I can tell, so unlike some of the races I target were I go out with the lead pack and see what happens this was never part of the plan. Target was 29 min and closer to 28 min if everything went well.

Start was about 150m downhill before a left turn, wasa good pack run down the hill so my larger build held me in good stead against skinnier "runner" types. Race spaced out after about 500m and got into a good rythm,. Knew was going out reasonbly hard but at 800m I decidied I would at least try and sit on the shoulder of people who overtook me.

Start to 1km Split - 3:12
This was a little bit faster than I was aiming for but not to bad.
Start to 1 Mile Split - 5:17
This is fast for me, I haven't really given it in a mile but I have thought breaking 5 would be tough, having siad that felt ok
1km to 2km split - 3:27
A little bit more sanity, had found my spot in the field so wored on maintaing gap with the runner ahead.
2km to 3km Split - 3:35
Think just eased into a bit to much hear, really need to eliminate the 3:30 min km in my races, isn't pysiological but more mentally not focussing on form and cadence.
3km to 4km Split - 3:28
Had got overtaken by a couple guys (More on these guys later - one was named Walter) after my slack 3rd km, worked the hills as is my strength and started to open up a good gap on these guys by the top of the hll in brentwood bay, remember this hill from Victoria Half ron bike course and the hockey goal bottle toss.

So at halfway I was 13:43, not feeling great but not horrible. Still losing a little ground on the downhills and couldn't find the form I had late last year before the snow but hill running was going well. Sub 29 was very acheivable now bar a big blowout.

4km to 5km Split- 3:30
Felt worse than this but must have held it together, was thinking just get to the 6km mark and you can throw up (Was actually thinking that). One of my training goals this year is to work that hard in a track session that I throw up, nearly acheived that in Race 1 :)
5km to 6km Split - 3:37
Garbage, this was just mentally weak. Need to be more cognisant of changing technique to get throw these moments, should have actually tried to surge a bit at this point. Was a false flat uphill hear but really no excuse, 7 seconds thrown away!!!!
6km to 7km Split - 3:34
Brain is a bit fuzzy in this one, was in pain and heart rate was >95% of max pretty consistently at this point. Think I once again didn't run the downhill well, had the guys I had overtaken previously overtake me and tried to hold on to them for a bit but was sliding back a little.
7km to 8km Split - 3:29
Still struggled in the first part of this section but kept on hearing go walter for the guy who was two ahead. I had heard go Walter a lot (Most of the racers were from the island which seems to have an awesome run/tri community) so decided I would be walter for a while. Also the womens leader was not that far back from what I could tell so had a carrot in front and a stick behind.

With about 750m to go checked behind me and had a decent enough gap that I figured that I could try and chase down the two guys in front without losing any spots if I went totally toast, picked up the cadence and knee lift and started working,e specially when people cheered my name (Walter!!!). As with all my races now I had scoped my give it at the finish point and was the 150m uphill to the finish line, knowing I can run hills hard I thought I my have an edge here. Got the guy I had been yo-yo'g with for the last 7km with about 180m to go so the sprint started earlier. I do not like letting people sit on my shoulder in the last 200m so always try to make a gap that they now have to bridge. So now Walter (me) was chasing Walter (The real one). Kept up my give it pace with huge knee lift and running purely on toes and caught him but was living in fear of getting chased down especially when that was the call made by someone in the finishing chute (The first guy I had passed was on my tail). Really started to pump now in pure pain and actually nealry caught another guy on the line, tried to slam my foot on the finishing pad first but missed it by a second.

Walter in foreground, other guy I was sparring with all day and me in the background at about the 4km mark. thinking "I have 4 more km of pain to go!!!!!"

race in review

Exceeded my target time after a month of very little speed work due to the snow so all in all awesome result.

Think I need to work on my race focus so I don't lose 5 seconds here and there, as well as maybe slowing down the first km just a little (would have been happier with a 3:20). Also think I need to get my downhill running mojo back, was losing a little ground in these sections.

Was awesome to race in such a strong field and the local support and volunteers were awesome. Even though I was on my own at the race with no friendly faces by using cheers for other people actually made a difference mentally so was happy overall with how I pushed my self to my limits. Also hill running was strong and that is a good sign for future races.

Post race
Got my ribbon for 10th in my age group and managed to stomach some of the food on offer. Also one an entry to the Victoria 8km race which I may donate to the tri club or something as plan on racing in Kona (fingers crossed) or racing the Victoria Marathon if plan A doesn't go to plan.

Headed out for the rde back to ferry, gave it a little more on this because I could, started to get a slow leak (at least I think) in my front tire near the end but posed no issues. Had my post island race ferry food traditon of a double double combo (Another $10) and caught the ferry home.

Race Economics

So race economics for this one = $23 entry, $22 race day food (the Gu counts) , $30 ferries and parking, and a $5 in gas. Cost = $90 which equals $11.25 a km or $3.23 a min

Next on the Agenda - The search for sub 35

Chilly Chase is on next week and me and nick are taking this on with the aim to go sub 35 for the 10km. Mcmillian calculator say that I should run 35:07 based on today but is a flatter course and we will be pacing each other. If no one else good turns up we could have a chance in this one. Busy week at work for the first half but should hopefully get some good training in with a few recovery runs/doubles and the forerunners workout on Wednesday.

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