Sunday, May 18, 2008

Sunday, May 18, 2008 [18M]

Bay to Breakers 12K, 40:07. I drove up to the city this morning and was there by 6:30AM, with some time to spare before the 8AM start. The course was point-to-point, starting at the Embarcadero and finishing by Ocean beach, and I didn't have any option to drop off warm-up clothes so I had to get to the start area with my racing shoes, running shorts, singlet and a T-shirt which I threw away at the start. It was a bit foggy and chilly in the morning, which made for nice racing weather but not exactly comfortable for standing around in shorts and a t-shirt. The whole atmosphere at the start was unlike anything else I've ever encountered. I was up front with all the seeded runners and elites, which wasn't anything unusual since everyone was going through the normal pre-race routine. The back, however, was one big party. Music blasting and lots of people in costumes (or no costume at all) doing crazy things like tossing tortillas. I did my regular meet warm-up out and back on Howard St, stretched for a while and put in a good number of streets before lining up for the start. I couldn't get right up front with so many elites, seeded runners and centipedes and I had to dodge a few people at the start before I got rolling. My plan was to be a bit conservative for the first 2-3 miles and pick it up after going up the hill at Hayes St. I got out slower than I would have liked, though, 5:18 and 5:25 for the first two miles and did a rather poor job on the climb, splitting a 6:09 for the 3rd mile. Even though I ran slow going uphill my legs took a mile or two to recover. Eventually I started rolling towards the end, averaging sub 5:00 for my last 2.5 miles, and throwing a huge surge in the last quarter to kick past one of the elite Africans. I was hoping to run a bit faster today but I guess it wasn't too bad of a race. I should have been more aggressive at the start, seeing how much I had left at the end. The legendary hill at Hayes St was pretty tough, it was 0.69 miles long and rising over 200ft, but I should have done a better job at it. After the race I ran back to my car and ended up doing a pretty long cool-down. For the most part I ran the course backwards and got to witness all the craziness. There's some things that you only get to see in San Francisco.

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