Thursday, September 19, 2013

Race #228 - Hit the Brixx 10k - Charlotte, NC - 09/14/13

This week marked the 5th anniversary of my first race back on September 13, 2008. Since I've numbered every race from the beginning, I guess nobody is surprised that I'm now at 228 races. When I ran that first race in 2008 my intention was to run just that single 5k and no more, but I found out that racing is a lot of fun so I figured I'd just keep going until circumstances forced me to stop. That's still what I'm shooting for. No doubt, one of these days the races will be a thing of the past, and I try to keep that in mind anytime I don't feel like getting up at the crack of dawn on Saturday morning to race.

Hit the Brixx was my third race back in 2008 and even now ranks as the slowest 5k I've ever run (28:32). I can still remember almost puking my guts out about halfway through the race the first time around. Fortunately I've learned how to pace myself a little better since then and I finished this one relatively unscathed.

This year I ran the 10k instead of the 5k thanks to my friend Bill Weimer transferring his number to me because he ended up on garage sale duty. The $10 transfer fee was a bargain, especially compared to the whopping $45 race day registration fee that I paid for Linda to run the 10k. Add to that the 6 bucks I paid to park and it cost me $61. Oh, and did I mention that Linda dropped out about a half mile into the race because of stomach issues? Those things happen though, and I'm glad she at least made the initial effort.

As it seems to be with most of the bigger races in Charlotte that I run, Bob Nelson and I were head-to-head for most of the race, and ahead of us in the 60-64 age group was Butch Holt, who usually manages to finish somewhere up ahead of Bob and me. Once again Butch came out on top in the age group, but it was pretty close. Butch finished in 43:50, ahead of me by 32 seconds (44:22), and Bob was 20 seconds behind me at 44:42, so we were all within a minute of each other.

As always, the highlight of this race is the post-race food supplied by Hit the Brixx. It's possibly the best pizza in town and there's plenty of it. Hard to beat after a race, even if it's 9 o'clock in the morning. Unfortunately I didn't get any pictures of the pizza extravaganza, but I did get a video and some photos of the race.

Here's the video, followed by some photos...



People gathering uptown just before the start of the race.

Steve Austin (left) and Bob Nelson (right) yuck it up just before the race begins.

Shortly after the race began it seemed like I was chasing half of the population of Charlotte.

I hit the 1-mile mark at about 6:50, which is a good pace for me.

My heart race was 168 at 1.55 miles into the race. I never look at my pace in a race -- only my heart rate and distance.

Mile 2 -- about 13:45 -- still on track for a good run.

Bob Nelson (blue shorts) passed me just about 3 miles into the race and we ended up running together
for the next 2 miles. 

Still under a 7-minute pace at the 3-mile mark.

Just past the 3-mile mark and my heart rate was still in the upper 160s.
That's right on target for me at that stage of the race.

This is just past the 5-mile mark in the race and Bob and I are still neck-and-neck.

Maybe 5.25 miles into the race was this water stop. I kept going but was surprised when Bob
took some water from the volunteers. I don't think he stopped but he was somewhere behind me
for the remainder of the race.


With two-tenths of a mile left in the race I was exhausted after climbing the last big hill.
I stopped for a couple seconds and turned around and  saw Bob in the distance, maybe
100 yards behind me. As much as I wanted to take a walk break I decided to suck it up
and keep running to the finish.

There's no better sight to a runner than the finish line.

Butch Holt was still at the finish line when I arrived 32 seconds later... Fist bump!

Bob arrived just a few seconds later... Double fist bump!

Click Here for Race Results

My Stats:

Time:  44:22
Pace:  7:10
Age Group:  2 of 7
Overall:  50 of  613 (8.2%)
Average Heart Rate:  166
Maximum Heart Race:  174
Age Graded Equivalent Time:  35:22  (75.91%)

***************
* RACE RATING *
***************

RACE COURSE
3 - Chip Timing: (3 points if yes)
0 - Starting Mat: (2 points if yes)
2 - Water Stops: (0)none  (2)normal  (5)extras [Gu, sports drink, etc.]
1 - Course Marking:  (0)bad  (1)good
2 - Course Scenery:  (0)bad  (2)pleasant  (5)extraordinary
2 - Mile Markers: (0)poor or none  (1)normal  (2)with clocks or time called out
2 - Volunteers:  (0)too few  (2)good
5 - Finish line: (0)mediocre  (2)not bad  (5)very good  (7)spectacular!
2 - Certified Course: (0)no  (2) yes
2 - Correct Distance: (0)no  (2)yes
1 - Partly or fully on unpaved roads:  (0)yes  (1)no

REGISTRATION
0 - Cost:  (0)expensive  (2)reasonable  (5)cheap!
3 - Race Day Registration:  (0)no  (3)yes

RESULTS
2 - Posted promptly online:  (0)no  (2)yes
1 - Clear link on website:  (0)no  (1)yes

AGE GROUPS
2 - 3 deep awards: (2)yes (0 for anything less)
5 - 5-year age groups (5 points) (0 for anything less)
1 - 14 and under group (1)
1 - 65+ group (1)
1 - 70+ group (1)
2 - Top Overall M/F:  (0)none or first only  (2)top 3 or better
2 - Masters Category(40+): (0)no  (2)yes
0 - Grand Masters Category (50+):  (0)no  (3)yes
0 - Senior Grand Masters Category: (0)no  (5)yes

AWARDS
2 - Overall Winner Awards: (0)none  (2)yes  (5)excellent
2 - Age Group Awards: (0)none  (2)yes  (5)excellent
0 - Door Prizes or Drawing: (0)no  (2)yes   (5-9)fabulous door prizes!
0 - Finisher Medals for All Finishers: (0)no  (3)yes  (5)really cool medals

POST RACE
10 - Food for Race Participants: (0-10 with 5 being average)
8 - Entertainment:  (0)no  (1-9)yes
2 - Finisher times posted after race:  (0)no  (2)yes

REST ROOMS
2 - Porta Potties:  (0)no  (1)limited, long lines  (2)plentiful
1 - Indoor Restrooms: (0)no  (1)limited, long lines  (2)plentiful

T-SHIRTS
2 - T-Shirts: (0)no  (2)yes
2 - Design: (0)not good  (1)not bad  (2)nice  (5)beautiful!
0 - Material: (0)cotton  (2)technical fabric
0 - Discount for no-shirt option:  (0)no (2)yes

PHOTOGRAPHY
0 - Professional Photography: (0)no  (5)yes
x - Prices: (0)expensive  (2)reasonable  (5)cheap!
0 - Free Photographs (newspaper, etc.):  (0)no  (2)yes  (5)lots of free pics!

PARKING
2 - Close to Start:  (2)yes  (0)no
2 - Close to Finish:  (2)yes  (0)no
2 - Plenty of spaces:  (2)yes  (0)no
2 - Free Parking:  (2)yes  (0)no (If you knew how to get into the lot... I didn't)

WEBSITE
2 - Dedicated race website (0)no  (2)yes
2 - Results or link to results posted on website:  (0)no  (2)yes

OTHER
0 - Shelter from Inclement Weather (needed or not): (0)no  (2)yes
2 - Swag (free socks, water bottles, etc.): (0)no  (2)yes, some  (5)excellent
2 - Part of race series or Grand Prix:  (0)no  (2)yes


TOTAL:  89