September heat and humidity are always a challenge here. Sunday was a cloudless, sunny day with 85% humidity. We had a slight breeze at the start, and a better breeze during the last mile.
The Fort DeSoto Park paved trail is nice, but has very little shade. That was okay, since my goal was to test my hydration and fueling plan in tough conditions.
I'm a real fan of the Gatorade Endurance products I'm using this year. I've had no stomach troubles, and they're easy to take while running. I used energy gels and thirst quencher during this race.
I started too fast, but calmed down and ran slow and steady after mile 2. I ran one mile with a pacing group which was fun. Most of the time I ran my own race with one eye on my BPM. It was super hot and I wanted to stay safe. 'Cause I'm not This Young Runner.
How Many Miles in Your 15K?
Somehow, I always run too far at Ft. DeSoto. I'm not sure if it's my GPS or if I swerve a lot. I tried to run tangents, but whatever. My race totaled 9.41 miles instead of 9.3.
Disclaimer: I'm promoting Orange Mud as a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews
What's Next on the Racing Schedule?
Last Saturday, I ran the One Step Closer to the Cure 10K race as a training run. It's was my unofficial kick off of racing season.
As I've mentioned, I like how races keep me motivated during a training cycle. A race helps me check my pace and endurance progress. Plus, it's always easier to get a run done if you have company.
Saturday's race around downtown St. Pete was a good challenge for me. I'm happy with my effort. I used Gatorade Endurance gel for race fuel. I took one before the race and ran steady for all 6 miles. I carried a second gel as backup, but didn't use it.
I had Gatorade Endurance lemon/lime thirst quencher in my water bottle. There was water only at the aid stations, so I was happy to have the electrolytes. (It's still very hot.)
I needed more than 6 miles for my weekend long run so I laced up my running shoes on Sunday to add 4 more.
I think bright colors and fun flavors improve my runs. So, I wore my bright orange Bib Rave tank and fueled with mango Gatorade Endurance gels for my additional miles. I felt good and both runs went well. Hooray running!
Disclaimer: I’m promoting Gatorade Endurance and First Watch Sarasota Half as a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to find and write race reviews.
Another Weekend, Another Training Race
This Sunday, I'm running a 15K as a training race. It's a flat, fast course at the Fort DeSoto Distance Classic. After I run 9.3 miles I'll know if I'm ready for my upcoming half marathon.
My fueling plan for the longer distance is to take a gel 15-20 minutes before the race, one at mile 4, and another at mile 8. It's going to be warm from the start, so fueling and hydration matter a lot.
I'll carry a water bottle with Gatorade Endurance thirst quencher, and take advantage of the six aid stations on the 15K course. This race offers water and Gatorade on course.
Counting Down to My Goal Half Marathons
Oct 20: First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon
Welp! It's just three weeks until the First Watch Sarasota Half Marathon. It happens October 20th on the waterfront, bridges, roads, and neighborhoods of Sarasota.
I'm nervous because this is an early season half marathon. It will be warm, humid, and sweaty. (Okay, I'm also nervous because I told everyone I want to PR!) But, it's one of my favorite courses, so I'm looking forward to running it.
If you want to join me in Sarasota, hurry up and register! The price jumps on October 12. Feel free to use my code: "BRSARASOTA19" to get $10 OFF the half or relay; $5 Off the 10K. They've added a 5K race this year, but I don't have a discount code for the 5K.
Use my code before the Oct. 12 price increase! SAVE $10 on the Half or Relay; $5 on the 10K with "BRSARASOTA19"
Nov. 17: St. Pete Run Fest Half Marathon
Just one month after the First Watch Sarasota Half, I'll run the St. Pete Run Fest Half Marathon in downtown St. Petersburg. It's my final half marathon in my 50s, and I'd like to PR this race, too.
I'm really excited about my big races. See you at the starting lines!
Better Weather in Second Year
This is my personal recap. Detailed Race Review —> 2016 Ft. DeSoto 15k Review
This Old Cranky Runner
Somewhere in mile 5 my stomach began to gurgle and rebel. That was the first time in 19 long distance races that I experienced stomach turmoil. I did not like it.
I'll admit I was cranky for a couple of miles. But, I kept running. After a pit stop at the North Pier restrooms, I felt better. I finished the race in 2 hours. Nowhere near a PR today, but that's okay.
I decided to think of this race as a training run. I'll keep running longer distances, and increase my hill and speed workouts to prep for the upcoming half marathon season.
It was easy to rise early for the first race of the season. I left the house about 5:40 am and traveled to Fort DeSoto. Took I-275 to 54th Ave. South to the Pinellas Bayway South (75c toll) to Fort DeSoto. The Race Directors prepay the park's entry fee ($5) for all runners, so cars don't have to stop at the entry gate.
This is my race recap. Detailed race review —> Inaugural Ft DeSoto 15K
Fort DeSoto Park is south of St. Petersburg, in Tierra Verde, Florida.
I was parked and out of my car by 6:10 am. Lots of time to use the port-o-lets, warm up and survey the crowd. There were plenty of port-o-lets at the end of the parking lot, lit by huge spotlights on generators. Runners gathered near the starting line, or warmed up by jogging around the parking lot. It was dark, so you had to watch for cars and people. Volunteers did a great job directing traffic.
The announcer at the starting line played music and updated everyone on what to expect. While we awaited the start of the race there was a light sprinkling of rain, which brought the temperature down a couple of degrees to 73º. Next, there was a hearty rendition of the Star Spangled Banner, a countdown and the race began.
On Your Mark, Get Set, Go!
There was a beautiful cloudy sunrise and a rainbow as we started the race. The only downside was that a rainbow requires rain. Runners in both the 15K and the 5K were drenched in a downpour of big fat juicy drops. And then, of course, wet socks.
There was equal opportunity drenching in both the 5K and 15K races.
I added this race to my schedule because I enjoy the venue and like the race directors. I also wanted to see just how fit I was after 3 months of doing easy workouts in the summer heat.
At the start of the race, I found a couple running at an appealing pace. I ran with them for 6.75 miles. The pace felt good, steady but not too hard.
After a couple of miles, my Gatorade chews slipped out of my belt. Thankfully, an energetic girl running behind me noticed. She sprinted up to me, gave me the chews, then ran back to her group. I was happy to eat those energy chews at mile 5 and 7!
After mile 7, I left my pacers and ran intervals. I still felt strong, but not constant running strong.
The beautiful sunrise was a nice distraction from the fact that we were soaking wet.
I felt a blister wanting to appear during mile 9. I tried to adjust my foot to avoid it. If it had been a half marathon, I definitely would have had a full blown blister.
My Nike+ app tracked 9.4 miles. I was pleased with my 11:50 pace; 1:52:50 time. Not too bad for This Old Runner's first race of the season.
After receiving my medal, I grabbed a beer, banana and water, which I consumed while watching the 5K awards presentation. Then, I made my way home, a sweaty, wet happy mess.
I foam rolled really well the night before the race, and again the night after the race. I had a few tight spots that were easily worked out. I think the foam rolling and an ice bath contributed to an easy recovery. I felt good 24 and 48 hours after the race.
The race course is on flat paved trails and roads throughout the park.
I’m glad the race photos were free. My race photos never look good. How could they? I'm soaked with sweat (or rain and sweat in this case) and have just run for a really long time. Even so, I love to see the photos. I appreciate the photos by Game Face Media included with this event. Free race photos seems to be new trend in our area, and I really like that.
Official race results were posted online at CoolRunning by 3 pm Sunday afternoon. There were 414 finishers in the 15K results, and 283 in the 5K results.
The beach, shelters, and trails go on and on at Fort DeSoto.
Gifts during this race:
Chats on the course, water, oranges, shade, rain, solitude, music, breezes, rainbow, sunrise, birds, trail, running, energy chews, shaded post race celebration, good food, beer, hydration, and cheerful volunteers at all the aid stations, fun finisher medal!
This is where you'll find me writing instead of running. (But, you know I'll be writing about running, right?)
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