Monday, September 22, 2008

Corporate Cup 2008 Recap

I ran in the Omaha Corporate Cup 10K this past Sunday. It wasn't my best performance by the clock, but it was a memorable race nonetheless.
Here's my friend Gerald Kubiak flexing like SNL's "Hans". But look at the fella in the red circle above his manly bicep! Behind that blurry image is none other than steel-cut and he's waaaay back from a pack that also includes Kraig Vanderbeek, Craig "Old School" Christians and colleagues John McVay and Luke Christiansen (not pictured). Pictures courtesy of Gary "el D" Dougherty

Throughout the race, I had been steadily losing ground to this pack of runners so that by the fifth mile, there was a gap of at least 50 meters between us. Now 50 meters may not sound like a lot (especially if you're watching amateur racers from the sideline), but trust me...when you've be been running hard for thirty minutes, it can be quite a formidable challenge. Imagine doing anything for 30 minutes (but keep it within reason as this is a family-friendly blog) and then try doing it faster. Yeah. Motivation wanes and fatigue hampers performance. More likely: doing it doing (whatever you imaged) for about three minutes, capitulate and then raid the fridge for a *ahem* post-workout snack.

So - when all I really wanted was some cold pizza - I knew that with just over a mile left it was the time to close the gap.

Fortunately, at that moment another runner blasted by. I instinctively switched off the brain and went into full pursuit, allowing him to pull me along. Cyclists will know this as drafting and bridging a gap. Until then, I had never successfully pulled that maneuver off in a foot race. In fact, if it hadn't been for all of the *lovely* experiences of bridging gaps on punishing group rides this past year, I don't believe I'd have had the confidence to try. But after a minute of hanging on to the rabbit in front of me, I found myself tucked into the back of this pack and catching my breath.

The recovery period didn't last long. Sensing the race drawing to its close, the pack picked up the pace again. All of those interval sessions throughout the year paid off: active recovery between hard sets reinforced the ability to recover quickly and hammer it out over final quarter mile of the race. Here's how it played out:

Two racers dropped off the back as the pace quickened. As we began a slight incline I saw John begin to pull away. I jumped into a full sprint. Luke fell out of my periphery. In the final 200m, I managed to out-kick Craig Dye but just missed catching John. While the official results show the same clock time, John was just enough ahead of me that I could have only grabbed (yanked) his jersey if I stretched for it. I was tempted.

While 35:56 (5:29, 5:51, 5:52, 5:54, 5:48, 5:47, 1:14 - 5:47 mi avg) wasn't a PR, I'd say that I couldn't have run a smarter race than the one I put together on Sunday. And at 15th place overall, it's not much in terms of bragging rights. Heck, race winner Levi Ashley busted out a 31:38 and didn't get a lot of press; the fish wrap also only printed ten deep. 15th of +7,000? Hey Bryan, can you buy me a cup of coffee at Starbucks tomorrow for this accomplishment?

Anyway, the tangible thrill of successfully bridging that gap and the kick to an exhilarating finish ranks right behind last year's Rodeo Run Omaha Mile race.

Congratulations to all who competed.

Now excuse me, I believe that there's some cold pizza with my name on it in the fridge.


  1. Nice finish. I liked the way you used smack-flash-testosterone verbige of cycling into something as B-O-R-I-N-G as running. On the other hand, any sub 36 10k is quite a feat of the feet.

    I think can solve one of your issues though: You can have cold pizza before or without running a race. You can eat it whilst watching TV, for breakfast, for lunch, after you close the bars, etc. To quote Sam I Am, you can eat it here, you can eat it there, you can eat it ANYWHERE.

    In fact, here is a picture of our Brother Brendan and some of his pals chowing down on some pizza.

    Lesson learned? All pizza is good.

  2. I should probably run a 10K race sometime. Or rather, run more often to begin with. I have no idea how those paces feel. I understand 15th out of 7000, which is amazing, but all else is lost on me.

    Great job Brady, and I'm glad you could use your riding knowledge to help in a running race.

  3. Sure, I'll hook you up with some coffee. That's fast.

  4. Nice race, bro!

    Agreed, anything sub 36 is an accomplishment. As for pizza eating squirrels, it does prove to be much more effective bait than peanuts for squirrel fishing.

    Gotta eat what your body craves. I'd eat pizza before a race if I had to. I had a nice Chivito before a race before. Good stuff. Sipp sipp!!!

  5. Running a sub 36: it's in the genes that my posture and running form keeps me healthy. For well over a year now, I've been averaging 2.5 runs per week and less than 20 miles total. Of course, there's a lot of cross training on the bike and some in the water that's kept the cardio in shape. It's the running muscles that are in maintenance mode.

    Munson: You know what that pace feels like. In fact, redlining on a bike is worse than running because you can sit/draft and recover and then take even more punishment. In running, once you blow, you're pretty much done until you stop, eat pizza take a nap...

    Bryan: how does 2pm work?

    That's a funny picture, Brendan. I mean, just look at that little feller's commitment to the peanut while at a total disregard to everything else around him. That's it, we're going squirrel fishing the next time I'm in town.

  6. Nice run man. Good job breaking 36. Bridging a gap on a run is a impressive accomplishment since, unlike cycling, you don't really get much of a draft unless you have a tough headwind. That was more of a mental accomplishment than anything. You latched on and forced your effort up a notch. Which is extremely hard to do at the end of a run.

    Good job

  7. I finally realized where I know you from, check out the visor on the drummer.


  8. Here a close up.

  9. This one's for Fred:
    "It was never easy for me. I was born a poor black child. I remember the days, sittin' on the porch with my family, singin' and dancin' down in Mississippi."

    Anyway, thanks for the comment, Shim. Now excuse me while I go burn the hard copy of your comments I just finished printing.

  10. Thank you brady.

    My story? You wanna know my Story?

    alright? Hey wait! what's that you're doing. Trying to guess my weight? ouch, hey! gurgle, gurgle, bleed, die.

  11. does that mean Brady has found his ...ahem special purpose?