I do this race almost every year because it’s the only 10-miler in the area and the weather is usually perfect, as it was this year.
In order to limit the impact on local traffic, the organizers divide the field in a unique way: Those who plan to run slower than 10-minute miles head out at 7 a.m. (called the “Buffalo Migration”) while those who plan run faster go off at 8 (“Buffalo Stampede”). This generally makes me the Stampede’s tail-end Charlie.
I should have known it would be an unusual day when the off-ramp to get to the starting line was already blocked off by the police, forcing me to take a two-mile detour. But I got to the start in plenty of time.
I saw a vehicle with a sticker that read: “26.1 – When you just can’t commit.”
Off we went!
Mile 1 – 9:35
Mile 2 – 9:11
Mile 3 – 8:59
A little faster than I’ve been training, but comfortable.
Mile 4 – 8:59
Mile 5 – 9:02
Mile 6 – 9:01
Two major highlights to this portion of the race: 1) the perennially upbeat Donut Guy. This year I got a chocolate one, which gave me an immediate energy boost; and 2) the high school band at the turnaround point, which blew my mind by breaking into a rendition of “ In-a-Gadda-da-Vida ” by Iron Butterfly.
Mile 7 – 9:02
Mile 8 – 9:12
I’ve averaged about a 9:07 pace to this point, which put me in good shape to better last year’s time, but I was struggling unexpectedly at Mile 8. I looked at my heart rate for the first time and saw 172. Yikes. When you have two cardiac stents, you can’t screw around for two miles at about 95% max heart rate.
I slowed to a walk for about a quarter-mile until my heart rate sank below 130. I then gently picked it back up.
Mile 9 – 11:18
Mile 10 – 9:44
Official finish time – 1:34:41
175th out of 202 (another 200 participants in the Migration)
29th out of 30 in 50-59 age group
When I got home and downloaded my Garmin data, I saw I hit 160 heart rate 2.25 miles in, and averaged 159 for the entire race. That’s a good 20 beats higher than normal.
I couldn’t figure out why that happened, until I noticed my morning carvedilol sitting untouched on my sink.
Stupid! Stupid! Stupid! If I had continued at the pace I was doing I could have caused myself some real problems. I’m perfectly fine now because after being so stupid I was smart enough to pay attention to my Garmin.
Anyway, this was meant to be my “speed” race so I could go leisurely through the Tower of Terror 10-Miler next Saturday night. I should still probably go easy.