I love the local races back home and still do as many as I can. I hated that I missed this race last year and it has become one of my favorite races because of the location, course, and race director. It is a PR course with good weather before it gets so hot and humid. I was coming off running the Florence Forth 10K in Durham on March 4th in 36:42. I wanted to beat that time here on a flatter course and win the race. The race gives really cool custom decoy awards to the overall winners. The decoys are made by Casey A Decoys and are the perfect award for this race because the decoy represents the waterfowl heritage of down east Carteret County and the Outer Banks of North Carolina.
My Dad and I arrived at the race around 8am for the 9am race start. The weather was good and the wind wasn't as bad as forecasted. It was sunny with a temperature in the low 60s. About 35 minutes before the start I did my usual scoop and a half of Generation UCAN before heading off for an easy 1.5 miles warm-up run with Katherine.
As I neared the first mile maker I noticed there wasn't a mile marker on the course. They must have forgotten to put them out. It was a little annoying but I knew the course was USATF certified and I knew about where the mile markers should be having run the race before. I did have my Garmin 920XT on so that helped but I turn the auto lap off in races and hit the lap button at the official course markers so current mile pace is more accurate. The first mile was mostly protected from the wind being in the neighborhood and I was able to open with a 5:47 first mile; right on pace.
I was out front with only Katherine within striking distance of me. I kept my eyes ahead and continued to run hard. The fast opening mile and wind were starting to make it more difficult though to run the pace I wanted. Aside from the missing mile markers, all the course turns were well marked and volunteers were stationed at intersections to stop traffic. Mile two was slower in 6:02.
The next 1.5 miles were directly into the wind and it felt strong as the neighborhood was thinning out taking away the little wind protection we had. I kept running hard into it though looking forward to the final left turn and having the wind at my back. I ran mile three in 6:13. Once I made the turn back onto the main road the police car pulled ahead of me to lead me to the finish.
I kept focusing on the police car and using it as my pacer. I passed runners and walkers finishing the 5K and cheered them on as they cheered for me. It was feeling warmer than it was thanks to the full sun and no shade but I'll take April warm over the heat and humidity of the Beaufort Road Race in July. I ran mile six in 5:58 and finished the last 0.2 miles at 5:39 pace to take the Win in 37:36. Katherine was 2nd Overall in 38:01. She said she wouldn't have ran that fast if she hadn't been chasing me so I'm glad she surprised herself.
Several of my friends had good races as well. Kent won his age group in the 10K and Lauren was the 5K Overall Female winner. We got to get Kevin to win his age group next year! I love this race and area. I'm sure they'll remember to put the mile markers out next year. I want to see this race grow in numbers and I plan on doing anything I can to make that happen. The area is beautiful and the 5K and 10K courses are great. You can't beat finishing across the water from Cape Lookout either.
Socks: Smartwool PhD Run Ultra Light low cut
Shoes: New Balance 1400v4 road flats
Shorts: The North Face Better Than Naked Split Shorts 3"
Singlet: The Running Syndicate Adidas singlet
Road ID Wrist ID Slim
Watch: Garmin 920XT
Sunglasses: Rudy Project Rydon