This web log was created to keep you up to date with the athletic pursuits of Blake Boldon. It will be updated regularly with competition schedules, results, and photos.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Sea Gate Elite Athlete 5k

As evidenced by my posting, life has been hectic since June. I started as a full-time assistant coach here at Iowa State on July 9 and my spare time has taken a drastic hit. I have had intentions of posting about the trip to USATF nationals in Indianapolis, the 5th Season 8k in Cedar Rapids and the Minnesota Mile in St. Paul since I ran in the races back in June & July. When I got back from my trip to Oregon in June I hit the ground running with work and I haven’t had a chance to look back yet. I also hope to post some details about my trip to Maui in September and the Des Moines Half Marathon in October, but all in due time. As I'm writing this I’m sitting on a flight from Oakland to Chicago on my way home from a very disappointing performance at the 3rd annual Seagate Elite Athlete 5k in San Jose, California. It’s been a long week because I left Ames on Friday to head to the NCAA National Cross Country Championships in Terre Haute, IN. Our results were pretty mixed. We had two ladies who qualified individually and they ran fantastic races. Lisa Koll was 18th and Grace Kemmey was 22nd so they both earned All-America honors. The men’s race was the exact opposite. For whatever reason, we ran horribly and tied for 30th place (31 teams qualify for the meet). There isn’t a lot more to be said about that, but it’s really hard to see the team put in months of hard training only to fall well short of their goals. At the awards ceremony I bumped into an old friend, Dave Hartman, who coaches at Georgia and was able to convince him to give me a ride to the airport in Indianapolis so I could catch my flight. The trip to the airport definitely helped to lift my spirits but when I finally made it to Oakland it was good to be there. I got to spend Tuesday and Wednesday relaxing with my friend, Jim Sorenson. Jim lives in San Leandro, California and he always lets me crash when I’m in his area. He’s a runner that’s been doing it well for a while. This year Jim turned 40 and had a great season setting the American masters record for 800 meters and the world masters record for 1500 meters. Since he was also running the race we were able to room together at the host hotel in San Jose. My race in San Jose was as frustrating for me as the national meet had been for the ISU guys. I went out with the field but by the mile I was already behind the lead pack and my mile split was 4:29. At that point, I had already switched to survival mode and my goal became to make it to the second mile mark in 9:00 and then hopefully I could gut out the last mile. Unfortunately I was 9:04 at two miles and fell apart from there. My last mile was likely five minutes but I have no idea what my official time was. It was a stellar field and I haven’t seen any results but I heard that it was won in 13:37 with a pack of four guys up front. I was far enough back by two miles that I wasn’t in the mix and I died so hard that I might not have been in the top 20. Jim was the top masters runner in a time of 15:02 and he wasn’t too far behind me so my time could be anywhere from 14:30ish to 14:55 or so. I wasn’t fully functional when I finished and I don’t really remember making it through the shoot, except for bumping into Jim. I walked to the VIP tent, grabbed my things and walked back to the hotel. I dropped my stuff off, saw the Packers score a touchdown and left for a 6 mile cool down in the hopes that I could gain some perspective. It’s a very frustrating and disappointing result and the challenge of coaching and competing is becoming more obvious. There are three distinct components to the balance: work, training and recovery. I have been failing miserably at focusing on recovery and that has definitely had an effect on my work & training. This weekend I’ll spend my time recruiting at the footlocker Midwest regional meet but I hope to sit down and come up with a plan for the 2008 season in the coming days. If I am going to be successful as a coach & athlete it isn’t going to happen by coincidence or accident. I owe special thanks to Mark Winitz (the race director) for allowing me to return to the race to try and mix it up with the top guys, Alissa Shook for inviting me to spend Thanksgiving with her family for the second straight year, and last but certainly not least, Jim for giving me my home away from home in the Bay Area.