28 December 2014

Operation Jack Las Vegas Satellite Race

big finisher medals
A couple of weeks ago, I was looking at the Running In The USA site and saw a new local race.  It was the Operation Jack Las Vegas Satellite Race and both my wife and I decided to run the three hour race around a 1.67 mile loop in Kellogg Zaher Park which is within 15 minutes of my house.

About Operation Jack - The Operation Jack Autism Foundation was founded as a charity in 2009 as a way to honor Jack Felsenfield who was born in 2003 with severe autism.  It promotes autism awareness and raises funds for autism related charities.

On to the race - We showed up at the park at 7:25 and picked up our bibs.  It was a brisk morning with temps hovering in the 33-34 range.  At 7:50, we got some quick prerace instructions and promptly at 8 AM, we were off.

something for the wall
The loop was easy to follow.  It was basically a big rectangle around a bunch of active soccer fields.  Half of the loop was uphill and half was downhill.  The race started/finished by Bathroom #3 and was also the site of a small aid station which was well stocked with water and munchies.

Sarah and I ran the first loop together and shortly after completing it, I began to move ahead on my pace and she settled into her's.  The laps ticked away and I made certain to call out my number to the counter as I passed him on each lap.

Early in the race, a group of guys took off and by the time I was a lap in, they were a substantial amount ahead of me. Around the 12 mile mark, I began to catch/pass them and was pleasantly surprised to find that I had moved into 3rd for men when I crossed the line to complete Lap 10 at 2:54. Sarah finished 9 laps and was 2nd for women. Instead of trophies or medals for placing, we each received a hand painted oil painting.

The legs felt good.  Clipping along at a 10:20-30 pace for that distance does not feel overly taxing and I plan on knocking out the marathon at Camarillo next Sunday to kick off my 2015 year of racing.  I used this race to try out a nutrition plan with Gatorade Prime Energy Chews.  I ate two right before the start and followed that up with two more every 45 minutes.  For hydration, I stuck to my standard Powerade Zero (yep...I mixed Gatorade and Powerade products) but made it a point to drink it at a regular basis starting at the one hour mark with a drink every 30 minutes after that.  The plan was pretty simple and is what I will go with next weekend.

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