I decided to hop in the local Hoosier 5k on Saturday morning to get an under-distance racing stimulus ahead of the Boston Marathon in a couple weeks. It's always fun to do a local race, and Bill Bartley and Ben Bartley of Indiana Running Company put on a great event. I ran the half marathon twice when I was in law school here, back in the spring of 2009 and 2010, finishing 4th and 2nd. It was good to be racing the streets of Bloomington again, which are always a challenge with their sizable hills (for road running anyway).
I thought I could probably run under 15:00 on a flat course, but I thought mid-15s would be more reasonable for the Hoosier 5k course. I knew I would have some competition from my new Quaff ON! Racing teammate, Danny Fisher, who is training for the Louisville Marathon in two weeks. But the half marathon tends to be the more competitive race of the two, so we didn't have anyone else challenging us. However, the Half and 5k start at the same time, and half marathon winner Jessie Davis (a 2:18 marathoner) actually got out hard with us.
I hit the first mile in 4:57 by my watch, with Jessie and Danny in my slipstream. I pushed a bit on the climb up Walnut from 17th to 11th, before really letting it loose on the descent to the square. I kept the pressure on through the gentle downhill on Kirkwood, before turning onto Indiana to start the long climb towards home. I saw a 9:08 on my watch as I passed the two mile mark. Despite the quickness afforded by the downhill, I'm pretty sure I did not run a 4:11 second mile, so the marker must have been placed a bit early.
I gave a quick head check, saw that I had a decent lead, and knew that I'd have the win as long as I didn't blow up. I gave a good push on the uphills back to the Stadium, added a quick loop around the IU Credit Union (some tight turns!), and hit the final straightaway. I passed the three mile mark in 14:25 and knew I would be right on the bubble of 15:00 for the full 5 kilometers. The last 200m are a slight uphill, and I dug deep trying to dip under. I didn't think I made it, but the official time was 14:59—nice to be rewarded for the final push! There's a typo on the main results page that says I ran 14:49, but the searchable results show the official 14:59. This was a PR for me for a road course, and all the better that it was on a tough course. Bodes well for Boston, as it shows my turnover is coming around quickly after some quality workouts in the last month. I struggled with a quick pace at last month's Napa Valley Marathon, but I'm feeling a lot quicker and smoother now.
|My friend Alan and girlfriend Beth made me a nice congratulations sign at Soma Coffee!|
After the race, Danny (who ran a solid 15:27 for second place) and I went for a little cooldown on the Griffey trails north of town. It was nice to get to know Danny a little better, as he's a great guy and a great runner. He's based over in Columbus, IN and has run 2:2_ for the marathon. Hoping to do some training with him in the future! We finished back at the stadium to watch our Quaff ON! teammates, most of whom were running the half marathon, cruise in. Everybody ran pretty well, and it was cool to have a good ten or so of us racing.
Even cooler than that was our little after party at the new Quaff ON! Bloomington location (on Grant Street between Kirkwood and 6th). The new bar /restaurant /tap room isn't open for another couple of weeks yet, but we got to enjoy the beautiful day on the expanded porch, quaffing some Busted Knuckle, Yellow Dwarf, and Hare Trigger IPA!
|Quaffing some brews and checking out the soon-to-be-opened bar post-race.|
|Quaff ON! brews on ice|
|Busted Knuckle (English Porter), Yellow Dwarf (Dry-Hopped American Wheat), Hare Trigger IPA|
|The Quaff ON! Racing gang on the porch of the new Quaff ON! Bloomington location.|