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Proudly displaying my sponsors as I cross the finish. No 'helmet boy' this year but watch that quad…it could put an eye out - 4/13/2008
Christopher Giordanelli
Simpsonville Weather Forecast, SC (29680)

Green Valley 10-Miler Race Report

by G-Man 25. February 2011 06:29

Location: Greenville, SC
Date: February 12, 2011
Placing: 2nd Overall
Format: 10-mile Running Race
My Race Photos
Results: Click Here

I received quite a few comments on my last race report - apparently everyone was enthralled with the idea of cow-chasing. Nothing nearly as spectacular this time. We had no cow to catch. No, this week - it was a GOAT! OK. Not really. Unless you consider Kevin Mosteller a goat (his ears and chin are kind of 'goatish' but I'll leave it up to you). And by the way, his name is pronounced "Most-stellar". At least that's how I like to pronounce it with the kind of flair that a rap star might put on it. Because, by all accounts...he is "most stellar". He would have made a great training partner for the Boston Marathon this year - if he hadn't been shut out by the registration system. Then again, I'm not really sure he deserved to go in place of others since he ONLY beat his qualifying time by 40 minutes. But as usual, I digress...

Yeah, no - it's not some form of new arctic animal. It is Coach Rick letting us know that it is C-O-O-O-L-D

I've done 4 running races in just over a month and I swear each one has been progressively colder than the one before. I could be like a lot of people and scoff at the idea of "global warming" after 2 of the coldest Winters in a row but I'm smarter than that. I know that something like global warming isn't an overnight phenomenon. Al Gore might just have the last laugh in a few hundred thousand years. In the meantime, I'm afraid to show up for the Reedy River Run in a week for fear of a second ice age.

It was a really sparse turnout this year. At least that's what I thought until I discovered that I somehow got the start time wrong by what seemed like 2 days. I felt so amateur - not only for getting the start time wrong, but also for being 'that guy' who is sitting in his car waiting for them to get registration set up. I mean it's great to be excited about racing but at least give people the illusion that you have a life outside of exercise. Fortuantely, I didn't drag Janis with me today to wallow beside me in my shame.

Scotie and Finn try to help pin my number on...but it's hard enough WITH opposable thumbs

After my failed attempt to nap in my car for an hour or so - which just seemed to make me more tired - I finally got up the energy to brave the just-under-30-degree temps to do about a 2-mile warmup. Amazingly, I actually managed to warm up during my warmup and felt comfortable stripping down to my Kattouf shorts and socks, a long-sleeve shirt under my Fleet Feet singlet, and gloves. I must have looked stunning in my color - and sponsor - coordinated outfit. I was confident that if they had decided at the very last moment that it was too cold to run and that we would be judged solely on our attire, I would podium for sure. Only the cheetah skirt could have elevated me another place or two. But then again, I'm not sure I could pull it off anymore. That was a younger, more svelte G-Man.

Team K pose with Gail Kattouf - who won the women's event, Tom Calamia (yellow cap) - who raced his first 8k, and Coach Rick who is really just a figure head

We all moseyed over to the start line when the announcer started barking over the megaphone (which, if it had been named by the people at Starbuck's would have been caled a 'superhumongargatuanphone'). One of his first announcements was "...I'll say 'runners ready'...and then 'go'" After which he immediately said "Runners ready. GO!". Mmmm, yeah. We totally were not expecting that. Several of us at the front were laughing as we started up the road. Did he just really do that? Kevin Most-stellar immediately starting pulling away from us as the lead group behind him slowly formed. In the first mile, the group is like an amoeba trying to take shape. People catching up; people dropping off; people jumping into the race...what?

Yeah, when we got to the first mile marker I looked around to see that I was in a group of about 7. I was surprised to see some people I hadn't noticed when we first took off including a couple of guys running together. At the time, I didn't think anything of it because I would never have guessed that someone would bandit a race of this size. I mean, maybe if you were trying to help a friend out with pacing but why would you and your buddy just decide to 'crash' a race? It can't be because you're lonely since you are running with your other bandit friend. I hope they didn't take any food or water at the stations becuase *I* paid for that stuff. I'm not necessarily saying that you shouldn't ever bandit a race because who knows if there will ever come a time when I need to bandit a race. Like when...well...an evil mastermind kidnaps my family and tells me that if I don't compete in a running race without paying for it, they will slowly release the poisonous gas into the secret chamber where my family is being held - just below the public library in Gotham City. I'm guessing this is exactly what was happening with the guys who were 'banditing' this race. It would HAVE to be because the only other explanation would be that they were afraid to get beat 'officially'. Oh yes I did.

A couple of seconds sooner and you would have seen the 6 or 7 guys that dropped me here as I kept to my prescribed heart rate. I got them all back...

This event is the perfect event for showcasing how running by HR can be so much more efficient. It is actually almost comical when seen throught the eyes of spectators or competitors. Our group was all together at the end of mile 1 right before an all-uphill mile 2. I had to back down to keep the HR in the right spot and so the rest of the group pulled away by a good 30 yards. Mile 3 was flat/rolling and I caught back up literally as we crossed the mile 3 marker. The next half-mile was a good, steady downhill and in order to keep the HR in line, I had to kick it up. I left the group. By mile 5, it was just me and the two bandit runners trading the lead. Every time the road went down, I left them behind and every time it went up, they caught back up.

At about mile 7.5 I used a good downhill to open up a gap but this time - when I hit mile 8 - I was allowed to take the HR up to maximal effort. I never looked back until the final half mile. There was nobody there. I crossed the line and still...nobody. It wasn't until this moment that I realized that the runners had to be bandits. They must have turned off the course somewhere in the final couple of miles. I crossed the line in 58:50. 2nd place. I told Coach Rick that although I know my first few races of the year were well off of pace because of allergy/asthma issues - I would still be disappointed if I could'nt break a 6:00-mile. I was thrilled to see a 5:53 pace. Just a few weeks ago, I couldn't even break a 6:10 pace on a flat half-marathon. It appears that I am returning to 'normal' although I'm not quite counting my chickens yet.

The money shot. Remembering to press the stop button on the Garmin at the exact moment you cross the line is no small feat

I mentioned how comical it might look racing by HR; slowing down on uphills and racing down the other side. Today I was with the group at mile 1, dropped at mile 2, back with the group at mile 3, and by the end of the race I had put more than a minute on the next closest runner. Comical? Maybe. But the results don't lie. One of the other nice things about running this race is that the course has been the same for many years. And I found it quite interesting to compare my Garmin data to my PR last year.

mile 2010 2011 diff
1 5:44 5:51 7
2 6:05 6:13 8
3 5:49 5:45 -4
4 5:47 5:47 0
5 5:58 5:58 0
6 5:51 5:50 -1
7 5:50 5:58 8
8 5:44 5:48 4
9 5:43 5:49 6
10 5:36 5:36 0
11   10 10
12 58:07 58:45 :38

Fo-shizzle! It's Kevin "Most-Stellar" wearing his cap of eminence

Race Notes:
* Fleet Feet runners took 2nd, 4th and 5th overall.
* I felt good during the race but I was wasted during my cooldown (moreso than usual) and had trouble shuffling through 3 extra miles.

Next Up: the Reedy River 10k and Ironman Puerto Rico 70.3

The only man I trust my legs to...Bob "Magic Fingers" Mancuso

Ruth finally meets Finn. Finn says Ruth is his new BFF


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