Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Turkey Trot Race Report - 5mi

Love me some Turkey Trottin'

This is the third consecutive year Annie and I have made the 15-minute drive over to the Woodlands, TX on Thanksgiving morning. We both really enjoy this race.  Usually it is a rather laid back event that has a 5mi run, 1mi kid's run, and a 5k walk/run.

This year was also the first time we had some decent running weather with the temperature around 45 degrees at the 8:15am start. Last year we suffered through unseasonable heat and humidity and the year before was bitter cold. This was the Goldilocks year.

We met up with our friends Bobby, Jen, and Dave and started to stroll over to the starting area. For some reason everyone but Bobby and me was walking like they were on a casual Sunday afternoon stroll through the mall! And with a few thousand people around we ended up getting separated.

Bobby and I decided to line up at the front of the pack as this race is notorious for having large groups of walkers near the front. We got to the front and I looked around and noticed that there were a lot of skinny, fast looking people today.  All the local Colleges and High School teams were there and we even had a Kenyan in full Spiro gear at the very front! Going be a barn burner!

Okay, I had not really given this race much thought in terms of pacing. This was my third race in 19 days and the legs were a little flat feeling so I just decided to go out hard and back off if it started to hurt.

The gun went off and the opening pace was ridiculous!! About a quarter mile in I looked down at my Garmin and it had a 4:42 in the pace/mi box? Holy shit, this is not sustainable, was my first thought. I backed off and got passed by a couple groups. The legs were not responding very well so I told myself to find a pace that wasn't too painful and just cruise for the middle three miles and then hammer it for mile 5.

The middle three miles were pretty uneventful. I was holding around a 6:35-6:40 pace and was passing a lot of the people that barreled by in the opening mile. Quite a few of the HS kids were now walking at this point as they all learned a valuable lesson about going out to hard!

Mile 4 approached and I decided to step it up and really picked up the pace. I passed a TON of people in the last mile and finished feeling pretty good with a new PR for the 5mi distance. Probably could have went a little harder but that would have put me on the couch for the next couple of days and I had a big weekend of running planned.

Jeff Irvin
GE Run Thru the Woods
The Woodlands, TX - 11/24/2011
Finish Time - 32:20
Overall Rank - 94/2300
Age Group Rank - 10/155
Old PR - 35:45; New PR by 3m25s

Overall I was pleased with my time but sort of disappointed in my AG ranking. In every other AG my time would have been in the top 3. Last year I finished 8th in my AG but was over 3 minutes slower? This means next year the goal is going to have to be a sub-30! It is good to have goals, right?

Annie got herself a new PR as well and had her first race that she averaged under the 8min/mi pace! She is becoming quite speedy!

Mile Splits per Garmin 310xt:
#1 - 6:08
#2 - 6:34
#3 - 6:40
#4 - 6:31
#5 - 6:04

Thanks for Reading,



  1. Wow! You are super speedy! Don't sweat the AG ranking...you're probably in the same category as some of those college kids! Turkey day races are stacked in the age groups. My 15 year old ran 19.08 in the turkey trot and still finished 39th overall because everyone is home from college.

  2. Holy cow that was a fast race! I cannot believe you ran that fast and were 10 in your AG...wow!! Congrats to you and Annie for awesome races!

  3. OMG such a fast race - 32:02 and you were 10th in AG?? HOLY CRAP. That blows my mind.

    The other 9 people are probably not Ironmen though :)

    Congrats to you both!!!

  4. Awesome job on the race! The field for the race sounded insanely fast. Starting off at a 4:42 pace?!? Nuts. Seems like you ran pretty much a perfect race.

  5. If I ever see a 4:42 on my Garmin and I am not on my bike, I might shit myself. haha

    Love seeing the highschoolers fading back after 3.1 miles. haha. Road racing is a lot different than XC.

    That does suck about your AG. You just have to keep going faster ad faster I guess.

    Congrats to both you and Annie!

  6. Impressive splits. Crazy about that opening pace. Way to go! Guess the upside of being a back of the pack-er is that I am not really "racing".

  7. Congrats on a huge PR! Crazy a pace that fast was 10th.

  8. Way to go, Jeff! That is super fast, and it's got to feel good showin' up those youngins. Ha! Good job!

  9. dude whats wrong with you
    you had it with that 4:42 avg out of the gate!

    sedriously tho- another great effort and another great FINISH - congrats


  10. I think you should have tried to maintain the 4:42's. Then again, that probably wouldn't have ended very pretty. And I can't believe that 9 guys in your AG were faster than you. Holy crap.

    I'm liking the Irvin speed. Send some my way.

    Oh... and I'm loving the new look of the blog! :)

  11. I agree with Colleen, you should stayed with 4:42's, it would have epic in one way or another. Probably the another, but I got an award for that

    I learned a long time ago, you never now who is going to show up at what race, like you said, another race, you would have poduim

  12. holy shit, 4:42!!!!!!! even for a little while that is amazing! congrats on the PR to you and annie! both speed demons!

  13. Great job to you and Annie on your PRS! I am so happy for the both of you.

    I was in the Woodlands this weekend and it was great. The weather could have been warmer but I still enjoyed every minute of my time there.

    Hey have you ever heard of Steel City Pizza in Spring, TX? If you haven't you should check it out. They are a Steelers bar and they have a lot of great memorabilia.

  14. Congrats to you both! Don't you hate it when you get faster but so does everyone else?!

    We have a 5-miler that I do every year in Dec. I have sat right at 35 for the past few years. I know I still have a 34-something in me, but it won't be this year!

  15. Congrats on the PR! It's funny how as you get older the AG's get more competitive....

  16. Dude! SO fast!

    Again, for like the billionth time, it has been AMAZING watching this running transformation ocurring in front of our eyes and seeing the fruits of your labors.

    Have you ever done a stand alone 5K or 10K? I wanna see how far below 20 mins and 40 mins you can get.

  17. Speedy McSpeederson and then there is your times too that are fast.

    I love the lessons learned by the HS kids. They were probably thinking how is that old man still running.

  18. Yikes, awesome race! I agree with the others, though. Next time see how long you can hang on to that 4:40 :)

  19. Quicky von Quick Quick! Nice run Dude! I am jealous of your speed.

  20. Just saw where you are following my blog! Nice to "meet" you, and now I am following you as well! I have eased up on my training in the last month or so, but am ready to kick it back into gear. I'm glad to have found another inspirational journey to follow! :)