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Race report from the middle of the pack - Indy Mini Marathon 5/8/04 (long, sorry)



 
 
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  #1  
Old May 10th 04, 07:21 AM
mwright
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Default Race report from the middle of the pack - Indy Mini Marathon 5/8/04 (long, sorry)

I ran the Country Music 1/2 marathon its inaugural year in 2002 in 2:15 (on
a cool day), and have run some other local races, 5ks (a distance I hate)
and 10Ks. Thought I'd give the Indy Mini Marathon a try, as my sister lives
there. It's a flat course (not like Nashville/Country Music land where I
live) with an average high on that date of 71 degrees, and I've heard good
things about it. Sounded promising for me to try to take some time off my
ever so middle of the pack pace. I thought 2:10 would be realistic, based on
5K and 10Ks, and anything less than that, gravy. All of you fast runners,
be kind. This is the speed I'm at, and I suspect unfortunately that I'm not
too remotely far off from my genetic potential, so I'm just trying to do the
best I can with what I have. I've been doing 20-26 miles/week for 12 weeks,
4x per week, with long runs usually around 10-11 miles, with one 13 miler.
Was going to do another 13 mile long run, but had one of those really bad
days and cut it very short. I live and run in a hilly area, and am just
barely figuring out how to do an easy run on hilly terrain, so haven't been
thinking about speed training very much (although have been running my
shorter hillier runs at a higher intensity). I had to take time off in late
2002-2003 for plantar fasciitis and have carefully built up my distance, and
so this is my longest race since then.

The Indy Mini (terrible name for something that involves 13.1 miles, don't
you think?) is part of the weekend of activities centered around the Indy
500. Heavy car theme (no surprise) for the half, which wasn't any kind of
draw for me, as I don't care about race cars. They sell out routinely, and
this year sold out at 30,000 long ago (the 5K the same day draws 3,000).
The course was redesigned for this year, and I imagine they will take some
grief for that. More on that later.

The Expo was well-organized, no problem getting my race packet. I liked
that they checked my chip at the expo by scanning the bag it was in to
verify it was appropriately assigned to me (do most races do that? Country
Music did not. I have not traveled to any other races except Bay to
Breakers, and that was before chips were in existence). Long sleeved
t-shirt (in May?) with a decent logo, a bandana, (with an bad commercial
logo which didn't match the shirt - that went to my niece), and some
literature, in the bag. I was with my daughter, and walked around the expo
trying a variety of sports drinks and foods (most of which made her refined
12 year old palate as well as mine gag), but managed to remember not to get
too carried away with strange foods (stopped short of the nachos and cheese
being offered by a local restaurant!). Had the pasta dinner at my sister's
house rather than the organized feed at the Expo with "The Penguin" Bingham.

I hoped that the temperature would be good, despite predictions of 83-88
degrees. (The record high was 88 in '79.) Friday gave promise of cooler
temperatures, as it was very nice that day, and much cooler than initially
predicted. Race morning started out ok, and with a little wind before the
start, I was feeling a cool. That didn't last though (the wind stopped),
and I left my throwaway t-shirt at the start. Ran in shorts and a sports
top, as I get very warm running. My first few miles I was trying for an
easy comfortable warm-up, as I need that. Wasted some time spending 20-30
seconds each mile fiddling with various things - both shoelaces needed
loosening up as my toes were getting numb, which annoyed me as they felt
just fine starting out. With the temp still comfortable, my first few miles
were 10:33, 9:44, and 10:07, which were comfortable miles. Temperature
started going up, although I still felt pretty good through the first half.
There are many bands along the way, some pretty good, some not very, which
irritated me later when I wasn't feeling so good. The course was not hugely
scenic, although apparently a good neighborhood tour (including for some
areas you wouldn't want to visit at night), and starts and ends downtown,
spending some time along the river (nice, but exposed). Did pass the zoo
near the start. I was not being hugely consistent with my splits, as I
fiddled yet again with my shoelaces, trying to relieve a sudden onset of
foot pain that felt like a Morton's neuroma (got better, so the damn tight
shoelace again, but got me a 10:29 split).

One of the changes for this year was the loop on the Indy Motor Speedway.
This began mile 6. As I entered the speedway, I heard several folks comment
on how cool it was to be running on the Speedway. They weren't saying that
later! They have lengthened the time spent on the track, doing the full 2.5
mile circuit, which was almost as bad as being on a treadmill (although more
calories were burnt There was some recorded music on the tiny speakers,
one group of high school/college cheerleaders, and no bands. We ran on an
inner lane, which was not canted, but packed us closer than on the roads,
with a lot of people slowing down at that time. It seemed to go on
forever, with nothing but empty bleachers as scenery.

By then, it was definitely warm. I had already (pretty much from the start)
been keeping up with fluids, using the walking time as a short cool down
period, which I think was a salvation, but ate up more time. Short time on
one of the few shaded areas on the course, passing an ambulance squad that
was working on (I later found out) a 32 year old who died of a heart attack.
Most of the course was very exposed, and I was really feeling the heat. I
still managed to keep up my speed, but it was becoming quite difficult. I
stopped drinking by mile 8 or 9, as later drinking wouldn't be very useful
because of lag needed for absorption, but was still using the time to walk,
cool down, and pour water on my head and neck (more time eaten up, but
probably worth it) (Note - in reading the course booklet, since there were
12 water stations and 5 Gatorade stations, I spent a LOT of time walking at
those water stations). Note to race bands - consider your music choices
carefully- playing that reggae/island tune of "it's hot, hot, hot" on a hot
day is a BAD choice! If I had had the energy, I would have chewed them out.
As it was, the very loud grunge type bands were irritating me badly later on
(but weren't at first), a reflection of how I was feeling. With 3 miles to
go, I picked up the pace some (9:42, too much, but realizing how close I was
egged me on), but paid for that. Last mile was awful. Going into it, I
realized I had started getting goose bumps and was chilling, a bad sign of
heat problems). The last mile is marked with 1/4 mile splits, which went by
terribly slowly, and I was feeling very badly, with nothing left in me,
trying to walk enough to cool down some, but still wanting to get to the
finish. I was seriously worried about my ability to finish. I don't think I
looked very good either, based on the spectator comments. Had to coax
myself into running, so I could cross the line running. Still, I must have
finished running fast, as my last 1.1 mile was slow but not as terribly slow
as I thought it was.

The medal is nice, with a black and white checked racing themed ribbon.
Plenty of food for the runners - potato chips (Seyfert's - local company -
gulped those down for the sodium), chocolate chips cookies, candy, bananas,
apples, and Gatorade bars. Bottled water and Gatorade in cups (although I
would have taken more than one bottle if I had known I wouldn't be able to
get more easily later). Photos taken just before you exit into the
blessedly shady Military Park, to meet family, although I left my daughter
and sister at home. By photo time, I had recovered enough to generate some
enthusiasm for the photo. Too bad I didn't have any red lipstick with me.
Really crowded in the park, which was irritating, as I wasn't meeting anyone
and wanted room to walk around for a while, stretching easily, before
picking up my bag from the gear check and then taking the shuttle back.

Nice things along the way - plenty: Shuttle service to the start ($5) from
a business complex not far from my sister's was convenient. Corralled
places, and people seemed to pay attention to their corrals reasonably well.
I wasn't tripping over people at the start or being run over. They had
changed the start to one single start line, instead of two lines feeding
into the same start line. Another runner said the old start caused a lot of
congestion where the two lines funneled in together. The run-walkers were
well-behaved (meaning I didn't see 3-4 running abreast and then suddenly
walking.) Volunteers were plentiful and helpful. Lots of portapotties, and
no lines (!). In fact, very little congestion along the way, apart from the
expected walk to the start, and congestion on the race track. One runner in
their local paper commented that the course had been straightened out, so
there were fewer turns to navigate and slow down on. I was really amazed to
see such a great turnout, being nearly all Indiana locals, for that kind of
distance (probably a lot of walkers, though, since I was in corral I, with T
being the last corral). Music was nice (mostly) except for the lack on the
Speedway.

Not so nice: the Speedway. The temps. They red flagged the course later,
meaning the combination of the temp and humidity had done enough people in.
Final high was 84 later, in the upper 70s when the clock turned off. Two
more heart attacks, and some heat stroke, although fewer reports of heat
stroke than I expected. The death probably rattled the course directors -
second one in its history, I think. Clock was turned off when the course
was red flagged, with no official time therefore for those walkers. If they
put up the yellow caution flag before then, I didn't notice it. Very little
shade. Not a very scenic route. Wouldn't have minded a few "characters" in
the crowd - those Indiana folks were very nice, but pretty serious. Just
saw one set of women in grass skirts. Being picky - the bib number was not
the usual Tyvex, more like water resistant stiff paper, and safety pins too
easily ripped through.

The final splits: 10:33, 9:44, 10:07, 9:46, 10:29, 10:08, 10:13, 10:28,
10:08, 10:07, 9:42, 10:25, and 11:29. Chip time - 2:13:25. I guess all in
all I should be content. My times don't do justice to how poorly I felt at
the end. Would I do it again? If I lived locally, yes. Not worth it
otherwise. Plans for the future? Not sure yet - I like the "real running"
nature of the half marathon. Couldn't possibly find enough time to train
for a full marathon, and not interested in that. Maybe work on speed for
local 10Ks (if I actually can get faster), keep up the base I've built and
maybe increase a little more (not having to work would be nice). A fall
half marathon would require traveling, so might just stick to Country Music
again next spring.


  #2  
Old May 11th 04, 12:34 PM
Mrsg
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Default Race report from the middle of the pack - Indy Mini Marathon 5/8/04 (long, sorry)


mwright,
Nice report- You have reason to be proud of your performance that day.
The heat and humidity truly were oppressive. This was my ninth running of
the Mini-Marathon, and I expected to finish in just under two hours. I did
not do as well as you.
I manged to run my pace for the first three miles only. That early in
the race I was already feeling the effects of the heat. Dizziness and
stomache problems slowed me, and I finished in a very disappointing 2:23.
It was nice to hear someone else mention that they were irritated by the
"Grunge bands." It hadn't occurred to me that it might have just been
another reaction to the heat, but I certainly felt exactly the same way.
Michelle


  #3  
Old May 11th 04, 01:38 PM
Leo
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Default Race report from the middle of the pack - Indy Mini Marathon5/8/04 (long, sorry)

My worst mini ever.
I did not mind the grunge bands...but the
"profane rapper" sorta bummed me out.

I did pass by the "3/4 mile to go sign" and
saw a heart attack victim being worked on.
He was tubed and had an AED hooked up.
Apparently he lived.

Oh well...I've signed up again for next year.

Hey, Michelle, what did you think of the course change?
I guess change is difficult for me...I did not like it.
Oppressive last three miles with no shade, extra time on the
track, no dual start...

On the positive side, considering the heat, the numbers
and the first timers...I think the organizers and volunteers
did a good job.


Mrsg wrote:
mwright,
Nice report- You have reason to be proud of your performance that day.
The heat and humidity truly were oppressive. This was my ninth running of
the Mini-Marathon, and I expected to finish in just under two hours. I did
not do as well as you.
I manged to run my pace for the first three miles only. That early in
the race I was already feeling the effects of the heat. Dizziness and
stomache problems slowed me, and I finished in a very disappointing 2:23.
It was nice to hear someone else mention that they were irritated by the
"Grunge bands." It hadn't occurred to me that it might have just been
another reaction to the heat, but I certainly felt exactly the same way.
Michelle



  #4  
Old May 11th 04, 02:50 PM
mwright
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Default Race report from the middle of the pack - Indy Mini Marathon 5/8/04 (long, sorry)

Thanks for your comments.
I was looking through the race results (narrowed it down to my age/gender
group!), which include the times for the last 5K. A lot of people were
slowing down a great deal. Have they ever considered starting the race
earlier? 8:00 seems pretty late to start a long race. . .

Margaret

"Mrsg" wrote in message
...

mwright,
Nice report- You have reason to be proud of your performance that day.
The heat and humidity truly were oppressive. This was my ninth running of
the Mini-Marathon, and I expected to finish in just under two hours. I

did
not do as well as you.
I manged to run my pace for the first three miles only. That early in
the race I was already feeling the effects of the heat. Dizziness and
stomache problems slowed me, and I finished in a very disappointing 2:23.
It was nice to hear someone else mention that they were irritated by

the
"Grunge bands." It hadn't occurred to me that it might have just been
another reaction to the heat, but I certainly felt exactly the same way.
Michelle




  #5  
Old May 12th 04, 06:00 AM
KJ
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Posts: n/a
Default Race report from the middle of the pack - Indy Mini Marathon5/8/04 (long, sorry)

I ran the mini too. Finished just over 1:30. I have heard a lot of
complaints about the heat on the track. When I was on it, it didn't seem
so oppressive. It must have, from all the complaints, gotten hot very
quickly. As far as the complaints of it being boring (the track
portion), that complaint seems silly to me.

I agree that maybe it should start earlier. Enjoyed the bands, the
people, and the "not much of a line" at the port-o-lets!

My heart goes out to the family of the gentleman that died and hope that
it never happens again of course!

KJ

Leo wrote:
My worst mini ever.
I did not mind the grunge bands...but the
"profane rapper" sorta bummed me out.

I did pass by the "3/4 mile to go sign" and
saw a heart attack victim being worked on.
He was tubed and had an AED hooked up.
Apparently he lived.

Oh well...I've signed up again for next year.

Hey, Michelle, what did you think of the course change?
I guess change is difficult for me...I did not like it.
Oppressive last three miles with no shade, extra time on the
track, no dual start...

On the positive side, considering the heat, the numbers
and the first timers...I think the organizers and volunteers
did a good job.


Mrsg wrote:

mwright,
Nice report- You have reason to be proud of your performance that
day.
The heat and humidity truly were oppressive. This was my ninth
running of
the Mini-Marathon, and I expected to finish in just under two hours.
I did
not do as well as you.
I manged to run my pace for the first three miles only. That
early in
the race I was already feeling the effects of the heat. Dizziness and
stomache problems slowed me, and I finished in a very disappointing 2:23.
It was nice to hear someone else mention that they were irritated
by the
"Grunge bands." It hadn't occurred to me that it might have just been
another reaction to the heat, but I certainly felt exactly the same way.
Michelle




  #6  
Old May 13th 04, 12:09 PM
Mrsg
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Posts: n/a
Default Race report from the middle of the pack - Indy Mini Marathon5/8/04 (long, sorry)

Leo,
Sorry to hear this was your worst mini ever. It wasn't my best. That's
for sure. Like you, I will be signing up for next year's event. It will be
my tenth year to run this race.
I was concerned about the changes to the course as the track has always
been a source of dread for me. That place heats up even on a cool day, and
I wasn't thrilled to hear that we'd do a full lap this year instead of only
half.
I was pleasantly surprised when a nice breeze hit me upon making it
around a curve. The first half of the track lap was still pretty miserable,
but it wasn't any worse than usual.
I liked the new start location closer to Military Park. That just made
the parking situation easier for me.
Many have suggested an earlier start to prevent the heat problems that
we saw this year. That's not a bad idea, but the heat isn't a problem most
years. I think I've seen two really hot ones in my "Mini" years. Weather
is a crap shoot in Indiana no matter when a race is scheduled.
Michelle
Leo wrote in message
...
Hey, Michelle, what did you think of the course change?
I guess change is difficult for me...I did not like it.
Oppressive last three miles with no shade, extra time on the
track, no dual start...

On the positive side, considering the heat, the numbers
and the first timers...I think the organizers and volunteers
did a good job.


Mrsg wrote:
mwright,
Nice report- You have reason to be proud of your performance that

day.
The heat and humidity truly were oppressive. This was my ninth running

of
the Mini-Marathon, and I expected to finish in just under two hours. I

did
not do as well as you.
I manged to run my pace for the first three miles only. That early

in
the race I was already feeling the effects of the heat. Dizziness and
stomache problems slowed me, and I finished in a very disappointing

2:23.
It was nice to hear someone else mention that they were irritated by

the
"Grunge bands." It hadn't occurred to me that it might have just been
another reaction to the heat, but I certainly felt exactly the same way.
Michelle





  #7  
Old May 13th 04, 10:41 PM
frank-in-toronto
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Default Race report from the middle of the pack - Indy Mini Marathon5/8/04 (long, sorry)

On Thu, 13 May 2004 05:09:20 -0500, "Mrsg" wrote:

Leo,
Sorry to hear this was your worst mini ever. It wasn't my best. That's
for sure. Like you, I will be signing up for next year's event. It will be
my tenth year to run this race.
I was concerned about the changes to the course as the track has always
been a source of dread for me. That place heats up even on a cool day, and
I wasn't thrilled to hear that we'd do a full lap this year instead of only
half.

it's funny to read that, because one of the reasons i would
be interested in running at indy is to be part of automobile history.
....thehick
  #8  
Old May 14th 04, 02:26 AM
mwright
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Posts: n/a
Default Race report from the middle of the pack - Indy Mini Marathon5/8/04 (long, sorry)


"frank-in-toronto" wrote in message
...
On Thu, 13 May 2004 05:09:20 -0500, "Mrsg" wrote:

Leo,
Sorry to hear this was your worst mini ever. It wasn't my best.

That's
for sure. Like you, I will be signing up for next year's event. It will

be
my tenth year to run this race.
I was concerned about the changes to the course as the track has

always
been a source of dread for me. That place heats up even on a cool day,

and
I wasn't thrilled to hear that we'd do a full lap this year instead of

only
half.

it's funny to read that, because one of the reasons i would
be interested in running at indy is to be part of automobile history.
...thehick


But a race car gets around that 2.5 mile track in 30 seconds. Runners . . .
don't.

Margaret


 




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