First race as a 60-year-old and it was a fun one. The small town (population around 600) of Elma, Iowa has an annual festival and, with a dedicated race director, and good sponsors and volunteers, puts on a well-run, well-attended race. There were 300 entrants in this year's run/walk.
The course is a straight shot into town from a nearby park and is entirely on an old railroad bed, now reused as a blacktopped biking/hiking trail. So the start is understandably narrow. The race organizers are aware of this and are adamant about having runners line up according to expected pace. I lined up beside one of the few acquaintances that I recognized while warming up, Torey Stallsmith from Charles City and former NIACC runner. I met Torey when we were both drivers and chaperoned for one of NIACC's summer camps in Colorado. There were around 20 runners ahead of us at the line. Torey went on to win the event overall.
I started at a pace that I hoped could get me in around 22 minutes or better. However, the first mile seemed a bit more difficult than I wanted and as the race continued I settled into a more comfortable pace. There were only minor shifts in overall place as I moved into about 10th with an initial 6:36, passed a couple runners then was passed by others, and ended up 15th with a second and third mile in the 7:20's each for a final time of 22:02 (you can bet I began to kick to see if I could somehow get under 22). That gave me 1st for the 60's and would have given me 2nd in each of the 30's, 40's, or 50's!
All results here.
All results here.
A free pancake breakfast and more events in Elma for anyone wanting to stay the day. A good race on a good day. Temps moderated from the recent hot, humid 80's and 90's to upper 60's or low 70's during the race.
My knees were only an issue during the first mile and I didn't think about them after that. Post race, the legs are fine but my right heel hurts a bunch...fought plantar fasciitis in the past and by using racing flats without orthotics (have quit using my orthotics for nearly a year now) the flare-up can perhaps be understood on blacktop. Hoping that Lucho's Vitamin I (buprofen) and IPA treatment will help me feel better tonight.