Race Running

Yankee Homecoming 10 miler – Race Report

I’ve only done the Newburyport Yankee Homecoming race a couple of times before this and have watched a few other years. Every year it seems that the weather is hot and humid for this race. Usually one of the hottest nights of the summer. This year though, the forecast was for 75 and a cloudy skies. Sounds like perfect running weather to me, at least compared to what you usually get.

Having done this race a couple of times before I knew that the second half of the race is the hardest part. There are a couple of hills that can eat you up if you start out too fast in the first few miles. My strategy was to do the first couple of miles as a warm up, pick up the pace to 7:20-7:30 for the next 3 and then let it out for the last 5 and see what I had.

Now what actually happened. I ran with Heidi, she forgot her watch and asked if she could run with me and I would pace her. Sure, no problem. Well, no problem for her, but for me it was a problem because it is tough to hold her back, she likes to go out fast!! Our first mile? 7:23. Yeah, that is close to 8. What about the next mile? How about 7:15! Those would be the slowest miles we did. At mile 5 we start up the hill and I notice that Heidi is falling back a bit and I ask her if how she is. She replies with “Just go”. I’m not ready to really go anywhere, so I just hold the pace going up the hill, right at 7:14. From here I know there is only one more hill at mile 7 so I start to pick up the pace and see how I feel. Mile 6 7:10 and I feel pretty good, not breathing too hard and feel comfortable. Picking up the pace a little more during mile 7 and I see I’m at 6:50 at the base of the hill. I finished up the mile at 6:57, but the hill has taken quite a bit out of me. I probably should have backed off just a little more. Next 2 miles are almost identical 6:56 and 6:57. The last mile I push with whatever I have left, which isn’t much and manage a 6:39 pace.

I was pretty happy with how the race turned out, even though I started a little faster than I planned. Official time was 1:11:28 for 7:09 pace. There is no starting mat so I lost about 15 seconds by starting back too far. It is good to know that I can start that quickly and still feel comfortable enough to run 7:10-7:15 5 to 6 miles into the race and feel like I could hold quite a bit longer.

Here is the Garmin history