Back To The Blog… 2007 Racing Begins

So I’ve been away from the blog for a while, courtesy of not having internet access at our training HQ in Flagstaff, AZ. But with the first race, albeit a running-only one, of the 2007 season having just taken place, I’m back to give a bit of an update. As part of the training camp I’m doing in Flagstaff, me and the Canadian crew I hang around with headed down to Sedona on Saturday February 10th to run the 2nd annual Sedona half-marathon and 5k. About half the group ran the 5k, and the rest of us ran the half-marathon. Overall, it was a very successful day with our group capturing the top spots in both the men’s and women’s divisions of both the 5k and the half-marathon.

The races are held in downtown Sedona, winding out from the Sedona High School on Rte. 89A
into red rock country along a very hilly route that also is at about 4,500ft. of elevation, which basically means that times were slow. The race venue is pretty spectacular, and we had the advantage of knowing the route from doing lots of cycling training on the meat of the run course.
After some cool weather for most of January, the weather race morning was quite nice, warming up nicely, but never getting too hot. We were all able to run comfortably in tank-tops, which was really nice after spending all January in tights and long sleeves.

For the first real “race” effort of the season, I didn’t have too many expectations. I wanted to finish well, so I ran a bit conservatively the first half, and then picked up the pace after the turnaround for the last 6 miles. The course is extremely hilly, so it is tough to find a rhythm, and it was hard to get my turnover back after some of the long climbs. Overall, I felt that I paced very well, and I was able to negative split the run, finishing with a fast last couple miles to secure the fifth place that I had held for almost the whole run. I ended up running basically by myself the whole way, so it was nice to feel like I had good control of my pacing and effort level away from the stimulus of a group. I will say that I am looking forward to running the Brooklyn Half again, since I much prefer the steady rhythm of Ocean Avenue.

All in all, though, it was a great day and a nice way to return to racing for the 2007 season.

5k Results for the group:
Men:
1. Kyle Jones 15:45
2. Colin Jenkins 16:20
3. Dano Wells 17:10

Women:
1. Kirsten Sweetland 18:XX

Half-Marathon Results for the group:
Men:
1. Simon Whitfield 1:13:06 (that’s really, really fast)
2. Adam Campbell 1:13:48 (this is also really, really fast)
5. Jordan Rapp 1:20:43

Women:
1. Jill Savege 1:23:20

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