Thursday, April 12, 2012

Race Review: GSA 5K

On Sunday, April 1st, I ran the 2nd GSA 5K.  Proceeds were dedicated to UT graduate student travel grants. The event took place on the roads of UT campus.  The first event was held in 2010.  This was a small local event.  I cannot find the results online, but I think 150-200 people were registered.  It was open to runners, joggers and walkers.  Registration was $25 for UT affiliates and $30 for members of the general community.  This included chip timing (although results aren't online...), a cotton t-shirt and a wide array of post-race refreshments.

Because this was a dog friendly event, Boyfriend and I took Ike and Bailey with us.  The race started at 8:30am.  Because we live close, we jogged approximately one mile from home to the race start.  We made sure both doggies did all their business before we got to the start, which facilitated a smooth and pleasant event for both humans.  Instead of porta johns, the student activities center was open and we were able to use indoor, clean bathrooms.  That was definitely a nice plus of such a small event.  It was also easy to pick up our bag when we arrived and would have been easy to register on the spot.
The event started a little later than advertised, closer to 8:45am than 8:30am.  The weather was mid 60s but quite humid and I was feeling very sweaty.  My legs were also sore from the previous day's half marathon. Boyfriend and I lined up with the dogs along with the other runners.  Walkers were given a separate start after the runners.  Although I was concerned that Bailey would be lackadaisical about the run, it couldn't have been farther from the truth.  Apparently she is highly competitive!  She took off in sled dog style when the race started and literally pulled me through the crowds.  She very much did not want people in front of her.  I was wearing my Garmin and for the first mile, we fluctuated between 6:30 mile pace and 8:00s.  Although my legs were tired, I made every effort to go at her pace and just pumped my legs and held on.  The course makes two loops around the football stadium and then in the third mile takes an out and back along 24th street.  You can see the course here:

Despite being a short race, the route had quite a few uphills with 238 feet of climbing.  Each loop around the stadium has a steady hill and the out of the out and back is uphill.  I think Bailey made some classic new racer (it was her first) mistakes; she went out too fast and had a hard time holding the pace on the hills.  I was feeling tired too :)  Ike caught us on the 2nd loop and we ran right near each other for the rest of the race.  In the end, though, his stamina and experience reigned supreme and he crossed the finish a second or two in front of Bailey and I.  They finished first and second dog!  My Garmin read 25:14, giving us an 8:08 pace.  Not bad for a warm, muggy double header weekend and Miss Bailey's first race!

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