Sunday, May 20, 2007

A busy day...

Today, and as I expected, was to be a busy day. Not only was there a race at 10am, but I also was assigned to manage a project that was to take place this morning as well. I had already missed two non-refundable races this year due to off-hours work related events, so I really did not want to lose out again.

The weekend started off with dramatics. The graphics adaptor to my work laptop failed, and this was a bad thing. I needed the laptop to check all of the systems for this weekend's upgrade. Although, I had to drive all the way out to Melville to get a co-workers laptop, I was relieved to have been able to get a suitable replacement. Still, the extra few hours of unexpected travelling, coupled with an ever important Met-Yankee game (YAY, METS WON!), eliminated any chance of getting in a last minute trot. My mileage this week has been way off, all due to a nagging injury in my left leg. My x-ray turned out to be negative, but to play it safe, I did not want to make it worse. My leg feels good now, so the rest definitely helped.

Fortunately, this morning's testing went onward with flying colors. I wont bore you with the details, but it was an involved plan that included people in New York, and India. With everything in good shape, I was able to leave for my race at 9am with Ileana and the kids. Ileana is my support core for all of these events that she attends with me. She wishes she could run too, but she's a little bit nervous, because she is type-1 diabetic. Truthfully, there are thousands of runners who are type-1 diabetic who run. It's all a matter of putting in more effort in monitoring herself before, during, and after her run. Perhaps, one day all of my running will give her the incentive to do this herself. She has a great body for running, and I think she could really do well, if she only tried.
Today, was fairly cool (52 F) and windy outside. The start of the race was on the oval track next to Forest Park. At least the rain the weathermen had threatened us all week long, never came. I had lined up in the front, and after the gun went off, I found myself in 9th place overall by the time we left the track and headed into the park. No sooner than we entered Forest Park Drive, the road that cuts right through Forest Park, the same one that I train on, we left it immediately for the unknown horse trail.

The pace was too fast for me but I managed to clock my first mile in 6:36. If it weren't for my lungs, I would have been able to threaten my own personal record. However, I could not keep up. My lungs were working much too hard. This was a surprise to me. Nursing back to health a bruised left leg, I had cut down noticeably on my mileage. In fact, my last run was on Wednesday. So while my leg was feeling a lot better (and still does, Im happy to say), I had expected my legs to be the weak link. Not so. My aerobic capability was evidently diminshed. The last 2/3rds of the 1st mile was on this horse trail, that was nothing but up and downhills all the way. It was in better shape than I had expected, however, and I might very well use this course to train in. Considering how flat Queens and the rest of Long Island is, this was a nice surprise...even though it wasn't for a race! Anyway, it was hilly all the way. And, I suck at hills (STILL UGH!).

The second mile was a complete abomination for me, as I clocked my second mile in 8:20. Plenty of "whitehairs" passed me by. There was a time not too long ago, when doing any mile under 9 minutes was a major victory. This is one of the reasons why anyone who runs on a regular basis, will become good at it. They just have to keep at it! By the way, "Whitehairs" is a term I use for all the people, that like me, are definitely not in the Open Male category, but rather somewhat up there pass me by!!!

Despite the implosion, I still managed to keep a positive outlook. And even when I did my next mile (Mile 3) in 8:08, and more people passed me by, it didn't matter to me at all. I was actually storing back energy for one final push.

As we exited the horse trail and entered Park Drive South however, I noticed that I didn't have enough energy as I thought I would. Guess the horse trail took a lot more out of me than I had anticipated. I was actually beginning to feel grateful this race was coming to an end...

Entering Victory Park and the oval track, I decided to put in my last, all out kick. I ran as hard as I could. I felt completely winded, and dizzy, but I abandoned all self-health checks, when this guy, who looked to be around my age, was trying to pass me. I noticed this immediately, and stepped it up even more. "Not with my kids here, not with Ileana here!" I kept reciting in my head, and ferociously sprinted the last 200 yards to the finish.

This ensured that I would not be passed again.

I completed my last mile in 7:13, and crossed the finish line in 30:17. Albeit, it was a disappointing finish timewise. I had to consider that when compared to my JFK race a month ago, this course had hills everywhere, whereas the JFK race was on the Airport Runway, a course that is as flat as it comes. Also, the longer the race, the slower one goes, I guess (JFK=3.1 miles, Forest Park=4 miles). This race also stopped my continuous streak of besting my previous PR (Personal Record) at 4 races.

The age categories in this race were 10 years, as supposed to the normal 5. What a shame. Had it been the normal 40-44, I would have come in 2nd place, and would have trophied!! But no biggie. I'll be back at it next year, and now that I know the will be REVENGE!

More stats & info: I came in 38th overall, out of 150 runners. Came in 8th in my division 40-49. Also, some guy named David Gonzalez, came in 28th (that's my father's name!). I know that I will never hear the end of it now that I've mentioned it. Also, and in 29th place, was a Lisa Gonzalez. In fact there were 5 Gonzalez's in the top 50! I guess we all are pretty "speedy" after all! The Forest Park track club will be posting the final results with photos, sometime this week. When they do, I'll mod this blog with the link.

All in all, I am real happy to be healthy, I love doing this, and can't wait for next race!

My post-race exhausted look:

Now it's time to rest up today & tomorrow, for Tuesday is the Wall Street Run!!!


Anonymous said...

Very good! Watch out for The Wall Street Run, as you pass by their main building. Don't carry your wallet!

DGA said...


Anonymous said...

Hey dude! Awesome running dog! I liked your number too.

Anonymous said...

Forgive me if I intrude, but why did you wear number 33? Don't you know that's the age when Christ, our lord died? Repent for this sacrilege. I am sure you were not aware of it. A sizeable donation to our Christian Church, our Lady of The Everglades, will redeem you on this one.

Anonymous said...

So? Did she start running yet?. Keep us informed.