Sunday, May 14, 2006

Riverbank Run 2006

I ran in the 29th Annual Grand Rapids Riverbank Run on Saturday, my 2nd year in a row of the event. Last year's race was basically the beginning of my long distance running career and I was very happy to run a 2:16:56 25k for an average pace of 8:50 min/mi. This year, however, I was more focused on running as fast as I could instead of just finishing.

If you remember my post on March 25, I declared my goal was to beat my dad's "Elenbaas world record" of 2:11:31. However, I knew in reality I had to beat his record by at least 90 seconds because when he ran they did not have the same timing system. Nowadays you tie a little chip to your shoe and as you cross the start, mid-way point, and finish line the chip registers and your time is recorded. This way my time can determined from the starting line to the finish line. When my dad ran the time started for everyone when the gun went off, and the 1-2 minutes it would take to get to the starting line counted in your overall time. So I knew if I didn't beat his likely actual time of about 2:10:00 there would be a big asterisk over my time.

The run started a little chaotic. We had problems meeting my parents, the Schaafs, and Cindy.

All of the sudden the race was about to start so Darren and I quickly got in the street but way in the back of the pack and we had no idea where Jason was.

Soon the gun went off and it took 3 full minutes to get to the starting line. Once we started running I was annoyed that the pack we were stuck in was running much slower than I wanted to go. So I spent the first 2 miles dodging other runners. Aside from that I was happy that I was feeling pretty good. I was surprised to see my first 3 miles go by at an 8:00 min/mi pace.

The first half of the race whizzed by. I felt good and knew I was running quite a bit ahead of my goal. From miles 8 to 10 I started to feel my legs a bit but I kept pushing the pace and stayed around an 8:10 mile. Mile 11 was my fastest of the course at 7:45 as it was mostly a gradual downhill. Miles 12-14.5 my legs got really heavy and I felt like I was slowing down a lot. At this point, though, I was well ahead of my goal and I was confident that I would get my goal almost no matter what, but I kept running as hard as my legs would let me.

At 14.5 I knew there was only 1 mile left so I gave it my all and ran under the finish banner when the clock read 2:09:48 from when the gun had gone off! That showed without doubt I had the Elenbaas record. My actual time from start to finish was 2:06:46 for an 8:11 min/mile average pace.

Jason had ended up getting in a pack of runners quite a ways ahead of Darren and me at the beginning. I caught up to him at the 5 mile mark and we ran a mile together. At the 6 mile aid station we got separated and he caught up to me again around mile 8. Soon we separated again and I stayed a little ahead for the rest of the race. He crossed the finish line at 2:10:18 for an actual time of 2:08:21.

Darren and I got separated in the first 1/2 mile while we were dodging people and never saw eachother again. He crossed at 2:12:16 for an actual time of 2:09:14.

Erin, both of our moms, and Cindy did the 5k walk while my dad, Marv, Derek, and Melissa all completed the 5k run. Here are their results:

Erin: 53:04
Mom Veldhof: 53:32
Mom Elenbaas: ???
Cindy 53:06
Dad Elenbaas: 28:31
Marv: 28:31
Derek: 27:03
Melissa: 35:33

The weather was cold and nasty but it was a great morning. I had an awesome time and was so glad my wife and family could be there participating and supporting.


Anonymous Duby said...

nice job ya stud

2:22 AM  

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