Smelt Run 2005

La Conner, WA
Skagit Symphony
45F / 7C

Total Time = 10h
Overall Rank = 139/
Age Group = 30-39
Age Group Rank = 9/

Pre-race routine:

Had my breakfast of oatmeal and peanut butter. Drove to the site, worrying about the heavy fog. Part of the course is on an open highway with speed limit of 50 MPH. We worried about drivers seeing us in the fog.

Checked in, stood in line for the bathroom, suffered from "performance anxiety", did some light stretching, then met Roy by the car.

Event warmup:

A band was playing symphony music in the gym of the La Conner Middle School. We lined up in no particular order. They should have had walkers starting behind runners. Everyone doing the 10k, 5k, and 2 mile "fun walk" lined up and started together.



The entire run felt very good. I ran the 2 mile last year so was excited to go for the 10k. My goal was to set a PR, which I did. The course was beautiful, although the fog shrouded many of the distant sights. Participants were friendly and I struck up a short conversation with a gentleman on the way back. Course support was better this year, but still leaves a lot to be desired. Some parts were downright dangerous as idiots in BATs roared by going 50 without waiting for runners to clear the road. The water station was manned by two elderly women, one pouring and one handing. That meant that if more than two people needed water, they had to stop and wait. I just passed it by on the way out, and hit it on the way back. Dixie cups are NOT appropriate for a 10k. They get soggy and most of the water is gone before you lift it to your mouth. For a bit more they could have had the slightly larger cups that hold up better.

What would you do differently?:

I would start closer to the front and push a little harder in the first two miles. Next time I'll set a faster pace goal.

Post race

Warm down:

Stretched and went for the post-race goodies, of which there were very little. Can I just say I am tired of all the food going to "fun runners" and walkers who finish before 10k-ers! There were half mini bagels (about 10), and a total of two oranged cut into slices, along with some brown sliced apples. They brought out more to the tune of 2-3 bagels at a time.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Fear of pushing too hard too soon.

Event comments:

I will probably continue to do this race unless more open up in February. The area is such a beautiful area to run in. I just won't expect much in the way of race support. Volunteers were few and far between, although very nice and helpful. The post race food was pathetic. There was one big water jug and a very little food. They need to figure the participants and hold back enough food for the 10k runners. There were many people who came in after we did who came in to nothing. They started cleaning up well before the racers finished the course.

Last updated: 2005-02-26 9:00 PM Running
00:57:40 | 10 kms | 5m 46s min/km
Age Group: 9/
Overall: 139/
Performance: Good

I was able to do negative splits all the way through. My slowest mile was mile one, probably due to the congested start. My fastest was mile 6 at 8:27 min mile.

Course: The course started a La Conner Middle School on a foggy soggy day. The day was chilly and you couldn't see more than 20 feet in front of you in some spots. We ran into town through La Conner where vendors were setting up for the Smelt Derby Festival. Since "town" is just one street and a short one at that, we soon found ourselves running along country roads. Just after mile two we entered the highway and for some reason the lead runner chose to run on the right, not the left. Didn't he do those AAA books when he was a kid? I distinctly remember every year having to "draw a picture of you walking on the left, facing traffic". Someone didn't do his homework! As we got further out of town the fog thickened and it was difficult to see the field of athletes ahead. We did see, however, horses, dogs, a huge flock of snow geese, tilled fields waiting to be sown, and were greeted by a gaggle of trumpeter swans flying over our heads cheering us on. The course was partially "out and back" so at mile four we headed back towards the Middle School.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? No
Events on-time? No
Lots of volunteers? No
Plenty of drinks? No
Post race activities: Bad
Race evaluation [1-5] 2