- First of all, there is more than twice as much race course per participant, which allows for better spacing for most of the race.
- Secondly, the increased distance reduces the number of walkers that have just signed up for the event on a whim. Sure, there are walkers in this race, and they go at the same pace as the walkers in the 5k. However, it's harder to participate in a 10k without at least taking the event seriously. 2 hours is a lot of time to spend on your feet if you're not prepared for it.
- Lastly, the 10k course is a tour of a part of the city. A 5k does not lend itself to taking in much scenery. Most 5k races that I've been in run down a street a couple blocks, then turn or double-back on themselves. With the exception of park-based courses, there's nothing to see. The Rodes course goes from Downtown Louisville to the Highlands to the Riverfront.
The course is just hilly enough to give you an honest run, but not enough to be overly challenging. There are a couple of very gradual climbs and descents, the entire course stays within a 120-foot elevation range, with most of the elevation change occurring in the first 2 miles.
I had planned to run a total of 50 miles this week, in 3 sets of double 6 milers on Monday-Wednesday, a 6 miler on Thursday, and then this 10k and warm-up/cool-down today. After my last 5k race and subsequent 20 mile long run two days later, my hip started acting up.
After running about 52 miles last week, my hip was really testy. The first two days of double runs this week added tendinitis in the ankle to the mix, and I ended up working in two days of hard exercise bike workouts instead of running.
Yesterday afternoon, the ankle had improved, but while jogging across the street to pick up my packet, I felt some major hip pain. To top it off, I started feeling achy and sore from a sinus infection. I managed to take NSAIDs and Sudafed and sweat it out overnight.
This morning, I felt pretty iffy about running 10k, much less racing it, but in running from the finish area to the start line, I tested my turnover and faster pace. I discovered that the faster turnover hurt less. This was a pretty good sign for the race.
At the race start [a nice 49 degrees], I took off near a 5:30 pace, but quickly settled back to my 5k pace of 6:30-ish. By the end of the first mile, I had settled down to a more natural 10k pace [+15 seconds to the 5k pace].
That first climb up Broadway is always surprising, despite it being a completely manageable hill, and mile 2 was my only mile that went over a 7-minute mile. The second slowest mile was mile 3, which has a smaller hill in it.
The remainder of my miles were just under my 6'51" predicted pace [5k + 15 seconds], and those miles are flat to downhill.
For the final stretch [past 6], I had virtually no kick. Neither my body nor my mind could will anymore speed than a 6'24" pace, which is fine, because I ran a pretty balanced race the rest of the way.
Overall Place: 254 / 7301
Gender Place: 224 / 3250
Division (30-34 male) Place: 44 / 474