Sunday, September 25, 2016

Tyler Gold Run 5K

This past weekend was the Tyler Gold Run 5K and Fly Tri Racing was a proud small sponsor event as it's main purpose was to raise awareness and funds for childhood cancer. The Rucker's, Heather and Josh (Carthage High School Graduate) were the organizers of this event in it's second annual. They have a 2 year old son that was diagnosed with leukemia at 7 months that is still fighting it today. 

It was a very humid morning and I didn't take care of my hydration needs through the week as it caught up to me by Friday as my feet and calves were cramping doing simple stuff so I knew this couldn't be good, but I was feeling alright enough give a good effort. It doesn't matter too much as I've still been building up a strong base for next year. 

UT Tyler's Connor Benson was here, he has more eligibility for Cross Country but will finish out Indoor Track next year. Him and I went head to head, at least for the first mile we hit in 5:19 as we ran through Rudman park (concrete) trail. After that I lost ground as went out of Rudman park and onto Copeland, then to Shiloh, and back into the park to finish the three mile loop. 

Connor is a great competitor, humble and nice runner. 

Great race and well organized by the Race Directors Heather & Josh Rucker.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

UT Tyler Braveheart XC Invitational

I went back for another round of college cross country racing. This time it was the UT Tyler Braveheart Invitational 5000. Coach Bob rides up the start line on a horse dressed as a character William Wallace and we, Alumni runners are his prisoners. We have been granted the opportunity to run for freedom.

I lined up like last week in the back of the pack, I believe it keeps me from going out as fast I normally would and have to build my way up. I got in the middle of the pack and quickly worked my way up. I found myself behind Alex Wilson, another alumni runner who was 2nd last week.

By the midway point going around the pond, I was still behind Alex and could never get by him. The race was getting rather difficult for me going around the pond and I quickly lost my top ten spot. Miles Z and Gerardo, a couple of the current UT Tyler  who I ended up catching near the end of the race last week, caught me just after mile two. 


Coming up big hill besides Spur 248, I started to reel Miles Z back in but couldn't quite catch him. I was able to finish in 17:22.50. This was back to reality as it was difficult to fake my fitness through  through another mile and on a more difficult course. However, given the training I've been doing since I'm really just gearing up for next year it went really well.

Thanks to the support of my Wife, Calley. She was watching Evan tonight. My athletes I coach through came out and surprised me.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

King Campbell Spectactular XC Invitational 2 Mile TT

Since "retiring" from triathlon after 10 years. I've brought my love back to the 5K  distance primarily. Since Texas 70.3  I set my goals to primarily be ready to race some of the competitive running races next year, as of lately I've just been focused on my "base" for the rest of this year with small spices of things we'll call "stuff",  and putting in some races to keep things fun and fresh. 

Friday night I raced in what is known as the King Campbell Spectacular 2 Mile Time trial on the UT Tyler campus. I wish we had this race when I was a runner there. It was 3 laps around the intramural and soccer fields. It was like a criterium race for runners. You could see the whole race if you were spectating, which is very rare in running. Coach Bob lets us old Alumni runners come and be a part of the race to see who still has it. This was the first time in 10 years I've been able to make it back to race with the Alumni's since graduating, so I was really looking forward to it. I had no big expectations going into this and no idea of what to expect so this was my first "performance test" I've done since getting back into the running scene. 

The race started off with most of us Alumni team in the back. I've never started in the back of a race before, but I think it went to my benefit and prevented me from taking out too quick as I got stuck in back at the start of the race and had to start working my way up progressively.  Relatively, it was a slow build up that first mile as I was stuck behind a lot of guys.  There were sharp turns around the intramural and soccer fields that slowed you down a little bit but overall it was still a fast course.  

I wasn't looking at my pace on my watch but I heard the mile split "beep" at me. I was like oh crap, we've only been a mile and I'm ready to drop out. I went back later and saw I ran a 4:59 the first mile and I was in 15th place approximately at that time. With about a 1/2 mile to go and 3/4th of a lap left I was 12th place. I didn't have any goals really but as I went along I wanted to make top 10. I put in hard last 1/2 mile the best I could and caught two packs of runners to finish in 6th place, running the last mile in 5:13 and total time of 10:16.95 for the course.  The winner ran a 9:55 from Jarvis Christian College and the first Alumni, Alex Wilson ran a 9:58 finishing 2nd.   UT Tyler ended up winning the meet. 

Praise the Lord, I ended up doing way much better than I ever expected to do here on the minimal running I've been doing for this. I actually ran just as fast as I was in college 10 years ago, maybe even faster if we were racing two milers back then. Hopefully, that's a good sign of things to come. 

Thanks to support of my Wife Calley and thanks to Sherril Wade for coming out to help with Evan and take the pictures! This coming Friday night is the Braveheart Invitational 5K.