Sunday, May 11, 2008

Ten on the Tenth

Non-Runner Nancy is at it again, getting us couch potatoes out from in front of the TV and into the great outdoors. She fired the starter's gun for the third virtual race she has set up, Ten K on the Tenth.

Because the race has a caveman theme, I ran the 10K with my club yesterday, that is, with the 10K Group (TKG) Training Program my club puts on. It was the twelfth and last session before the target race, the Capitol Hill Classic 10K next Sunday. A group of 31 well intentioned souls had winnowed down to about eight runners who were apportioned out among up to five coaches each week. Since it was raining yesterday, the coach/runner ratio was an exceptionally high 1/1. Not even the promotion of handing out program t-shirts could induce a greater turnout in the drizzle (much less my promised Pre-Race Strategy lecture, which in the wet circumstances consisted of the exhortation to stay hydrated, remember your chip and be on time). (Left: I tested out the Program shirt last week at the Flying Pig Marathon in Cincinnati. It worked fine, and even drew comments from three passing runners over the saying on the back, Get Used to the View.)

We ran the race 10K course, having met in Stanton Park in the District, its starting and ending point. The course is basically a rectangle, 3 miles long and a quarter mile wide. Its purpose is to tire you out for five miles and then run you up the third of a mile long Capitol Hill in the sixth mile as your rite of racing passage.

I ran the race last year and although I knew the hill was coming and I had run it often in training, I floundered on it and felt like I was swimming uphill for three minutes. It was awful. (Right: The 10K course.)

I set out yesterday with MA and we ran east past Lincoln Park to RFK. We eschewed running around the back side of RFK like the race does because there are no sidewalks or shoulders back there but we made up the distance later. Heading west, we returned to Lincoln Park on East Capitol Street and then ran south to Pennsylvania to run by Eastern Market. Running north to regain E. Capitol Street (where, despite 18 years spent in DC, I got lost momentarily and we ran astray for a few blocks), we turned west again and ran behind the Capitol. After a short jog over to Independence, we ran down the race's signature hill. Running a few extra blocks at this point to make up the distance we skipped at RFK, we then ran in front of the Capitol and hit the final mile at the base of the hill. We went up it smoothly but I still arrived at the top gasping, totally out of breath.

In my fog of fatigue, I got to thinking about the pint of blood I donated the prior Monday at the airport in Cincinnati. I have a theory that blood donations knock the stuffings out of your endurance capabilities for a couple of weeks and I had purposefully waited til after my marathon last Sunday to donate. Here was another brick in the wall of my theory, however.

Top of the hill attained, we ran it in the last half mile to the park for a 55:04 10K training run. A nice tune-up for the actual race. I think MA is going to be my star pupil.

15 comments:

akshaye said...

Peter - I think you would find it hard to qualify as a couch potato! Nice run!

Abby said...

Hey Peter,
What number marathon was the flying pig? I remain totally amazed.

cindy said...

Nice tune-up 10K!!

yea...I would think that donating blood would have an effect, but that's still a fast time.

CewTwo said...

I have to join a club! It is the only for me to get faster...

ShirleyPerly said...

Peter, I like that shirt slogan. Good luck next week on the 10K. I'm sure by then all the blood you donated will have been replaced and ready to go!

Sunshine said...

"Get used to the view" on the back... very cute!

Good to know you are running again after the marathon. Seems good to time those blood donations. I had to quit that when I got sarcoidosis a long time ago.

Your club's training program is awesome..as are your contributions.

Non-Runner Nancy said...

Great to hear you got out there with the club. Nice going!!

Thanks for running with us!

Nanc
XOXO

Lisa - Slow & Steady said...

My husband gives blood regularly and we call it the 'anti-doping' effect. It really affects his performance for at least a week. So I think you have a plausible excuse.

Don said...

55 minutes is a fine time for a 10k training run. Good for you.

And I do think you are right about donating blood - it would be interesting to get a CBC before giving blood and another the day after - red cell count and hemoglobin HAVE to be down! I wonder how long it takes to fully replenish those cells.

yumke said...

I'm running the 10K this Saturday. Sounds like an interesting course with a painful ending. Looking forward to it.

Anne said...

Yes, it can take up to a month for the body to be restored following a blood donation. I love the saying on the back of the shirt!

Susan said...

Way to go, non-couch-potato!

In Arkansas we do not have front license plates. They also do not in Louisiana, where the plate is going to Gordon: www.runtodisney.com

jeanne said...

another great dcrr race shirt! you've only had one DUD that i happen to personally know about.

and one day i will actually be in town to run this race! but i kinda have to be elsewhere on sunday.

no more donating blood before racing. listen to anne.

I wish i could at least be there to take photos!

Kick ass and take names.

Petraruns said...

That's an impressive training run - especially after the blood donation! Well done Peter - good luck with the real deal!

Jade Lady said...

I don't know how you do it - I find it so hard to do anything outside when it rains! And to do a 10K in 55:04 - I could only dream - Great Caveman 10k!