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Monday, April 2, 2018

CCC 2018 - a watchless race

Since I'm coming off injury, nowhere near PR shape, and need to know if I'm ready to train hard again, I decided to run the CCC 10k watchless. It wouldn't be completely blind, since there are on-course clocks, but I thought it would be wise to just run a steady tempo pace and assess my fitness, form, and feet. After a blow-up and aching foot at the Al Briede 5k a few weeks ago, I wanted to be careful.

It's been years since I purposefully ran a race without a watch, and I knew it would be tricky - it's a big race, and the crowd can easily sweep you away, plus I wasn't really sure of my fitness yet. I completed an entire workout on Tuesday, for the first time since my injury (albeit an easy workout, since it was race week), but then on Thursday I felt so bad and slow that I turned around and went home. I was up front in a seeded corral, which was a little humbling since I was easily the slowest in the group, but I did scoot back to make sure I was staying well behind others in my group that I might expect to be close to. I didn't want that temptation!
Free race pictures!

It's hard to write a race report without mile splits, but I do have some, thanks to the race results. I didn't look at on-course clocks, except for an accidental glance at mile 3, but I did know that I started out slow and easy. Sure enough, my results say I ran a 6:54. By then we had thinned out some, and I was able to stretch out and comfortably cruise. I felt like I was keeping a pretty steady pace, and I was breathing smoothly and easily. I grabbed water at mile 2; at mile 3, I saw that I was at 20:mid. I felt fine, but I reminded myself to just run a steady race and not take any risks. Now wasn't the day for that!
Looking like there is sun in my eyes!

I think the beautiful weather helped me feel so good, but I never felt winded or wretched like I usually do in 10ks. I did get a nasty side stitch at mile 5, which was annoying, and I also felt like I might have started to slow down at that point; it can be tough in a 10k since miles 4 - 5 are when the people around you might start to slow. For me, with no watch, that was tricky. I also kind of forgot how to kick at the finish, so my finish was exceedingly lackluster. But I felt completely fine, and in fact, not even tired! I finished in 41:27, and results tell me that my first half was 20:52 and my last half 20:35. All in all, it was a good confidence booster, both as practice pacing and a test for my foot. I felt good in both areas, and I'm confident that I can move back into training now.


  1. Welcome back! I'm really happy to see you're on the upswing!

    Even though I race "watchless", I still like to wear it. That way, I can review my splits later. I also like having the evidence of my run in case I'm ever accused of cutting the course.

  2. Nice work! That’s a great time in little training and coming back from an injury (well it would be an amazing time for me but we are at different paces!!). Hope you felt good afterwards and haven’t had any recurring pain!