The Pittsburgh Wild Half, 10k and 5k was held at Boyce Park on a cool and sunny Saturday morning. The trail conditions were mostly firm except several very deep muddy swap crossings and one creek crossing.
I wanted to thank Mac McCluskey for putting on a great race. He gave a bid to my son at a ‘Run Greensburg’ meeting but Mark was unable to run due to the number of track meets he had in two weeks (5). Mac is the owner of www.yesendurancesports.com and is a race director of a trail half marathon race circuit.
Above is Mac giving the pre-race instructions. The only real news Mac had is that he decided to stagger start the half marathon from the two shorter races by 10 minutes. Dang. That means to me, I will have to pass a lot of half marathon walkers/runners.
Below are two (Chris and Natalie) Greensburg runners discussing our pre-race butterflies.
The course record was 46 minutes and that was my goal for this race was to break the course record. We will see… I was also using this race as a training run.
From the start of the race I was in the lead and never saw another 10k runner until later in the race. I’ll discuss that later. I pushed my pace the first mile and lost visual contact of the other 10k and 5k runners.
Nearbmile 1, the photographer** took these cool photos of me on the trail and at the finish.
At mile 1.2, I ran into the Half Marathon runners and passed them for the next 2 miles.
During this time we traversed through some muddy swamps, a two step creek crossing and two steep hills which one was non runnable. I really don’t remember much of the details since this course was so technical with many switch back turns and narrow uneven trails. Mile four had the two hills, creek crossing and one swamp and was my slowest mile. By mile 4.5 at 36 minutes my average pace was under 7:46 and my projected finish time was under 46 minutes. I had less than a mile and a half remaining.
But this is where everything went wrong. The was a sign pointing the wrong way and I just followed other half marathoners. Up the hill and which was part of the 5 k course so there was marking tape indicating the path. I stopped twice noticing that something wasn’t right but I kept going. I reached a water station, which I passed earlier and I asked if I was going in the correct direction. The kind woman pointed me in the direction of 2 mile loop that I just previously ran 🙁
About 3/4 mile into the loop I don’t realized my error and my race was over. I finish my 10k race in 1:13 and 8.27 miles (2.07 miles too much).
Note the elevation of 935 ft was wicked and made this one of my toughest races. The actual 10k would of been ~600ft which is still a tough race.
My cadence was rocking until 35 minutes when I got lost…
Below is the last 200 meters of the race I finish as the 17th male. Note my knees on the second picture they were bloodied from the thorn bushes. I came to this race to run hard and I think I did the first 3/4 of the actual race.
Shoes Brooks Mach 15 cross country shoes with 1/4″ ceramic spikes. Could of use 3/8″. Brooks ID singlet and Infinity tight shorts
Brooks Infinity 1/4 crew socks
Tifosi Slip glasses with amber lens.
Garmin 920XT and a Garmin footpod attached to my RoadID anklet.
**All photos are courtesy of JL Photography and Jared Lashinski (https://m.facebook.com/JLPhotoandDesign)