Thursday, December 12, 2013

Turkey Trot 2013 Race Report

The Turkey Trot is never really an "A" race for anybody, but it is always fun to run fast. Last year was my first year running the Oglesby Turkey Trot and I finished 4th in 16:04. I wasn't sure of my fitness going into the race, but I knew I wanted to A) run faster B) finish higher than 4th. About 6 weeks before the Turkey Trot I ran a race on the same course, so I was hoping to run even quicker than that. The course basically has 20ish 90 degree turns, and a nice hill in mile 3.
The course.

Race morning was a wonderful 25 degrees...not cold, but not warm. Okay, it was a little cold. There were 1500+ registered, and 1410 finishers. It is actually pretty awesome that a town of a couple thousand people has so many people show up to race!

My goal was just to get out quick and figure out who was in the race. I did not see some of the names I was expecting to on the participant list. Last year I made the mistake choice to lead the race early and try to out run the other guys. This year I decided to see what the others were going to do and race off that.

 There were a couple single man breakaways in the first 1200m, but nobody wanted to keep on the gas pedal. At 1200m we were in a group of 3, and I decided it was time to take control of the race. I struggled with the hill the last 2 times I ran the course, so I wanted to give myself a cushion going into mile 3. I crossed mile 1 at 5:02 with a couple second gap on the chase pack.

The second mile is flat with quite a few turns. I decided to keep pushing. About 1.5 miles in, there were people out on the side sidewalks watching and I heard somebody say, "He looks strong right now." I needed to carry that into the upcoming hill!

I crossed the 2 miles in 10:10, and the uphill began. I was feeling good, but it was starting to hurt. At the top of the hill, Julie (and a crowd of other people) were there cheering us on. The thing that sucks about this hill is that it seems never ending--it goes up, flattens out, then goes up again! It is also by a sewage plant, so it smells "wonderful." Once you make it to the top of the hill, you have a lap around the block, then a loop around the park to the finish. At this time I had opened up 20second gap, so I was pretty excited. All that stood between me and victory was a loop around the park.

I crossed the line in 15:47--17 seconds faster than last year, and 7 seconds faster than Oct 5! Winning the Turkey Trot is nice, but I was more happy to see another course/race PR on less run training than before. November really was the "off season" for me, and I was still able to run well. After the race there is stuffing, cookies, pumpkin pie, and times!

My face was too frozen to smile.
As always, it was great to see so many friends and "regular runners." I have seen some of the same people at races since my first road race in 2004. It has been a lot of fun getting to know people over the years, and watch people grow as runners. There are also a lot of young athletes with a lot of talent, and it has been super fun to see their high school/college careers take off.

She has run all 35 Turkey Trots!
Thanks for reading! If you have any questions, let me know!
Race splits

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