News at

Melon Run 3 miles, July 4, 2000

Another small local race but this time in Gainesville. It is not a fast course because there are two significant hills and the temperature is always high this time of year in Florida. I did the very same race on the exact same course last year. It was my second 5K race at the time and I finished it in 22:52 - that gave me a second place in my age group.

This year I was sure I could finish in less than 21 minutes because I have trained pretty hard. But this year this was not an 'A' race. I am now training for a marathon in Washington DC held on October, 22nd. So this 3 mile race was only a speed workout. I did not taper for it at all like I did last year.

I warmed up by following the course for 2 miles, then drank a bit and went to the bathroom. Then ran another mile, planning how I would manage my effort. I got to the starting line just 5 minutes before the start, which was perfect because I would still be warm by the time the signal was given.

I said good luck to Nanci who preferred to start in the rear of the pack of about 100 runners. Same to Dan, my swimming coach in Gainesville before I moved to Tallahassee.

The race started just 2-3 minutes late. The first quarter of a mile was uphill. I held back a little and then accelerated on top of the hill. It was all downhill to the first mile marker that I reached in 6:39. I felt pretty good and was impressed by my time. My second mile lasted 6:47 though. I knew there was a big hill coming up and did not want to crash. With hindsight maybe I should have pushed the second mile a bit more though. The third mile was a real survival struggle but my competitive mind took care of the pain and I did my fastest mile in 6:37!

So, I actually finished in 20:03 (5th in my age group), which was way better than I expected. I gave it all I could but wished I could have broken 20 minutes of course. Next time...

After 2 Gatorades I run back along the course until I met Nanci and finished the race with her. She did it in 32 minutes, quite an improvement over last year (her first race) when she did 45 minutes I think.

Drop me a note!