Pumpkin Push

I ran my second 5K this morning (really my first since the last one was so messed up.) This was the Pumpkin Push, an annual race to benefit the 45th Street Clinic. Once again, a group of my colleagues from work ran the race, making it a lot more fun. Here you can see me with Scott and Bruce (Rob also ran but missed the photo op.)

Scott, Tony, and Bruce after the Pumpkin Push

It was a perfect fall day -- sunny and warm. The race was at Seward Park in Seattle; it was full of lovely fall colors and is right on Lake Washington, so there were great views throughout the race. Since it's so close to Halloween, many runners were in costume. As you can see above, we're pretending to be runners.

I had hoped to run 8:30 splits today (I ran ~8:40s last time) and started out a bit ahead of pace. Then, I reached The Hill. Forward progress ground to a halt while my heart rate raced skyward and legs burned. While tempted to slow to a walk, I was determined to keep pretending to run. I managed to haul my fat butt up the hill and back down it to finish the race just under 29 minutes (we didn't stick around for official results). According to my watch (I did buy the Garmin Forerunner 301 -- more on that later), I ran splits of 8:27, 9:34, and 8:30, so aside from The Hill, my splits were right on target.

Here's my GPS track for the race over a satellite photo, courtesy of SportTracks, a very cool (and free!) GPS-enabled logbook program. (The finish time is wrong because I started my watch late.)
Pumpkin Push GPS track over a satellite photo

After the race, we went to the Bluwater Bistro in Leschi for our now traditional post-race brunch of huevos rancheros (or the closest thing we could find. In this case, a yummy "Texas Toast" -- poached eggs, cornbread, beans, rice, and salsa).

I was worried about this race since I haven't run much since the last one and wanted to run a faster pace. While the hill ultimately screwed my plans, I'm happy to have completed the race pretty quickly and to have run the whole race. Time to pick the next race (the Dawg Dash next week is too soon, I think. No reason to help or patronize the Huskies anyway. Go Stanford!)

One thing I learned today (after looking at the photo) -- I need to pin my number lower. This one looks like it's hanging from my nipples. Not sure I'm ready for Bruce's loincloth number look, but even that's better.

[results update: My official time was 28:51.3, meaning 9:18 splits (not sure about the difference between my calculated times and the official times). I placed 63rd of 102 of men 30-39 and 167th out of 266 overall. It surprises me that there were more women than men in th race today: 385.]

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