Well I'm very, very suprised by this result. This was, I believe, my fourth best race ever and it comes in unexpected circumstances. The only better races: 1. Boston Marathon 2:40,2 Seattle Half 1:13, 3 32:30 10K. Anyway...
Did a two mile warmup with the bloggers: Jon, Walter and Twinkie. I was feeling Ok at the slow pace but I was feeling unsure. My legs felt good enough that I believed I would finish, I just thought it might get ugly.
On the starting line I see that my toughest competitor will probably be Walter unless Jon is feeling a whole heckuva alot better than he was at the 10K (he told me in the warmup that he ran miles 8-9 in like 10:10 last year, uh-oh). Then with 5 minutes to go, Trevor Ball runs up to the start line and I curse under my breath. We all ease into it at the start. I follow the same strategy as the 10K, slow up the first hill then taking a big lead by using the downhill very agressively. I regret doing this almost immediately as I feel myself cramping up as the road flattened and I relax. I'm unconcerned if the field catches me, as long as they are working hard to do it. Right at 2 miles I'm joined by Paul Pilkington and he runs behind me for about a mile before he starts to drop back again.
Miles 4,5,6,7 have uphills of varying difficulty. My plan was to relax on the steepest of the uphills and use them as a break. I was certain that Trevor Ball would pass me before long and I decided that I should try to make it hard for him to catch me. I was very pleased that I was breathing very hard on the hills as that meant that I was getting the max effort from my body. At 10K, I passed an aid station and people were making comments that implied I had built a huge lead. I looked back and saw someone around 20seconds behind me in a white singlet. I assumed it was Trevor Ball. I felt that if I could maintain my lead during the 7th mile then he would have alot of trouble catching me on the downhill. I really slowed down alot on the steepest part of the 7th mile and I kept thinking I heard footsteps behind me, but I refused to look back again. When the road flattened out from really steep to just uphill I took off. My legs felt very tired but cooperative. When I passed the 7 mile mark my confidence sawed and I sped up to probably around 5:00-5:10 pace. I risked a look back on one long stretch and could see that I had extended my lead. At that point the sun came out and I took off my mittens. When I passed the 8th mile mark I began to think that I might actually win. I just kept thinking that I didn't want to let anyone get to see the lights from the lead cop car. I was pushing myself very hard and m breathing was so hard I was getting a little dizzy. When I got to 9 miles I still thought I was going to lose, I hadn't looked back for about 1.5 miles. I climbed the final hill in the 10th mile as hard as I could thinking "I should at least give myself a chance". I headed downhill and passed by the main pack as they were hitting 10K, one of the organizers took a picture of me and i remember thinking "ha! I'm not going to win! Take a picture of the next guy". As I turned into the parking lot I got a view of the empty road behind me. At that point I knew that someone would have to run about 50second quarter to beat me (at most) and so I knew I had it won. Only at that point did I start to think about what my time was going to be and I was shocked to see the clock read 58mins. I crossed the line and looked back and saw no one.
A full minute later Walter came in. That's who was chasing me, not Trevor! The mere threat of Trevor was enough to propel me! Great race for Walter as he also broke 1 hour. Trevor came in 2 minutes later followed by Tim, Jon and Jeff Mcarthur all bunched up. Tim had been in contention for third but had taken two wrong turns!
Cooled down with the same guys for four miles. Then I headed to the Subway to get a 5 dollar foot loooooong! Then I went to the track team locked room and took a shower again. Good times.