Monday, March 8, 2010

Next Stop....Memorial Day

Day 1 of the zoo known as Spring Track Practice is complete and went pretty well all things considered. Those "things" being the nearly 3 feet of snow dumped on us in February. The district finally got around to doing something about the track on Friday. After skimming the upper foot or so of snow off the track, the weekend sun did its job and we had 5 solid lanes to work with today.

One exception was the jumping area on the left. The picture above was taken this morning. The pole vault runway was mostly clear, but not the jumping area. Boo. By this afternoon, most of the turf was cleared, but there's still some melting to go. I guess it could have been a lot worse...

The other thing about track is I always say, "The next thing you know, it's Memorial Day." I think my fall schedule may give this spring a run for its money, but we've got meets going on just about every weekend starting next week.

I also did a 5k this weekend over on the South Side by the Steelers' practice facility. I had been training a little more than usual in January and February due to some fellow teachers goals to get in shape and to lose some weight. They've been so dedicated and I'm so impressed with them. In turn, our 'Treadmill Tuesday' expanded also to Thursdays. I even got to the point where I did some mile and half mile repeat workouts on the treadmill. Crazy!

So, raceday comes and it claims to be a high of 45-50 for the day. Beth and I get up and it's 18 degrees out. So much for shorts, I thought. But, I pack for three or four different scenarios since I knew the weather was supposed to warm up. We get there and Beth does her long run (not racing since just getting back to 100% from the rib muscle issue) while I go in and get registered and place our tickets in a 'raffle.'
Being sponsored by the athletic trainers in the Pittsburgh area, they've got some bigtime sports connections and had some pretty nice items for silent auction and raffle. Beth and I aren't big autograph or jersey people, but they were impressive:

A signed Sidney Crosby authentic jersey and signed Marc-Andre Fleury Jersey were two of the auction items.

There was a raffle where you could put tickets in to win various prices like a signed Pitt helmet, running gear packages, Market District food package, Rashard Mendenhall signed picture,...., and about 8 or 10 more. You got one ticket with your registration and you could buy more.

Where did I put my ticket? A World Baseball Classic package (baseball of course) that included a bag, hat, shirt, pin, and wristband. Predictably at a running race in Pittsburgh, there were only about ten or so tickets (out of the 200+ runners) in my choice of the baseball package.

Pretty good odds, eh? Sure enough, I won the package at the post-race drawing. There was a kid that came up all mopey hoping he was going to win the prize using the same thought process I did. The hat was a fitted hat and wasn't my size so I gave it to him and it made his day.

Oh yeah, back to the race. It's still chilly as we're (we being me, Chad & Jen H, Doug, and Beth on her long run) warming up and I'm doubting I'm going to be able to wear shorts. Next thing you know, 20 minutes later, I'm not only wearing shorts, but I even shed my hat and gloves into the car before the race. Turned out to be just about a perfect day for racing. Upper 40's, sunny, no wind, flat & straight course, good blacktop surface. Sounds like PR material to me.

My official PR is just above 18:00. Over the last few years, I've split a sub-18 5k in some longer races (some of which were downhill point-to-point so probably cheating), but I've never had a 17:xx by my name for a 5k (not even in HS). So, that was the goal. The conditions were there and I went out with Chad and we were cruising. After splitting 5:16, 5:39, and 6:11 (1.1mi), I end up almost cracking into the 16's with my 17:06! Whoa! Good for 3rd overall (my second ever 'podium'). I'll take it. I guess when I get back in shape this summer (the spring is my off-season with track) I have to adjust my goals to maybe a 16:xx.

So, on to day 2 of track tomorrow and our first scrimmage next Wednesday...

6 comments:

Beth said...

or maybe the 15:xx's!! :)

Steve said...

Congrats again!! I didn't know you smashed your P.R.!! That is great!!

Wow!!! It may take a while to comprehend how great of a run that was for you.

DANG!!!

Marit Chrislock-Lauterbach said...

WOW - that is awesome Oscar!!! YES - definitely aim high... I agree with Beth - those 15:xx's could be in your future....

The weight loss training group seems like such a great program!

Charlie Ban said...

Congratulations on the PR! Keep at it and you'll definitely dip under 16:40 at the Gatons 5k. Like you said, before you know it, it's Memorial Day...

maija said...

Congrats on the PR! I was wondering what the time was but figured you'd post it eventually. And another agreement that you have 15:00's in you.

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