HEA Scholarship Race Report

This year's HEA Scholarship Race served as my final tune-up for this month's Boston Marathon. Last year, I had placed 2nd overall in 19:12, and then followed that up a month later with my first Boston-qualifying marathon. This year, I was hopeful I'd be faster, as my Boston goal is also more aggressive.

Thirty minutes before the race, my blood sugar was a bit too high at 240, but I knew I had insulin on board so I was hopeful it would get below 200 prior to the race.

At the gun, three of us jumped out, fast, but I was definitely the slowest of the three. I tried to maintain contact with the two rabbits, but settled in for a wire-to-wire 3rd place finish.

When I went through the mile at 5:44, I knew I was either heading for a PR or a terrible crash and burn! I opted to run this race mostly by feel, rarely glancing at my watch. I was deep into the pain well by the first mile and committed myself to spending the rest of the race there. In most races, pain is mandatory but suffering is optional, and this race was no exception. If you look at my heart-rate data for the race, you'll see I ramped it up to 95% maximium within a couple minutes and basically held it there the entire race.

After a slightly downhill third mile, I popped out on the high school track. At that point, I saw I was looking at a massive PR.

I finished in 18:42 - exactly a half minute faster than last year, and my fastest 5k in more than twenty years. Heading into the Boston Marathon, I couldn't be happier with the result.

The heavy anaerobic effort kept my blood sugar high, though, and I was 233 at race's end. I took some insulin to compensate and was thrilled that the elevated blood sugar hadn't derailed my race efforts.


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