the second race of the 2009 norwalk summer series, the 5 miler, is in the books. on the sunny morning more than 160 runners finished the hilly loop that began and ended at the cranbury elementary school. that number might even have been greater, but the fairfield half marathon was the next morning so saturday may have been a rest day for a few runners that would have otherwise run the 5 miler (but it didn't stop some runners from doing both races).
while i didn't have a particular time goal in mind, i wanted to finish in under 34 minutes. a sub-6:50 pace would hit that target. this was my 5th summer series 5 miler and i was familiar with the hilly, loop course. last year i ran a personal worst of 37:32 for the race. that was more than 5 minutes slower than my personal best for the course! i didn't want to (and didn't think i would) repeat that experience today!
the first mile went by in 6:42 - right on target. i missed the split for mile 2 (which was probably at the first water stop) and reached mile 3 in exactly 20 minutes (13:18 for the last 2 miles). this was still on target, but i felt myself slow down in mile 4, which took 7:03. mile 5 was a carbon copy of mile 4 - i was unable to pick up my pace, and it took another 7:03 to run. my 34:06 finish was a 6:50 pace, just a bit too slow to finish under 34 minutes.
the disappointment didn't last long. post-race perks included watermelon, great bagels, and ice cream (the good humor toasted almond brought me back to my own elementary school days). there were also massages available. post-race socializing (emmy, rob, kate, don, roy, amy, don, jim, marty, sherry, anton, joe, evan, brian, sean, ikuko, and jeanette - is just a partial list of the amazing cast of characters) and the awards ceremony rounded out the morning.
race three, the 7 miler, is in two weeks.
but the big "must run" race next weekend is the putnam county classic!! emmy and her co-race director, lee, have worked for months to put together an awesome event - don't miss it!!
here are my race photos.