Orienteering warm up/down (Foot) 10:00  ** 0.4 mi (24:59 / mi)
spiked:6/6c slept:7.75 weight:178lbs
QOC: Lake Fairfax. For a warm-up, I walked and jogged a streamer-o course with Alexa Merka. Max was going to go with us but he changed his mind as he is prone to doing. It was Alexa's 5th birthday. Since it was our club's winter meeting, lots of people were around after the activites and we sang "Happy Birthday" to her.
Orienteering race (Foot) 18:13  *** 2.9 km (6:17 / km) +82m 5:30 / km
ahr:164 max:174 spiked:11/11c
QOC: Lake Fairfax, VA. The format for today was an unusual and fun one. We had a Qualifier sprint to start with. It was a quick course with a lot of open field running. There were a few legs through some woods. I never felt like I was running comfortably. I climbed okay enough but never ran with any speed; it was probably a function of my weight. I made some small baubles but did okay. I've never liked the contours on this map. They seem too generalized to me. They confused me on the one leg where they counted going to #4. Between #5 and #6 there was a huge +30 foot house or larger sized mound beside the road and it was unmapped--perhaps it was added after the initial mapping but it looked like it had ben there a long time. It was nice to be outside. The temperatures were in the mid-50s F. There were some slick icy spots and a little soft old snow in the woods. I think my qualifier time was 4th behind Dave Pruden, a young Norweigan, and Ted Good in that order.
Orienteering (Foot) 33:37  *** 4.6 km (7:18 / km) +137m 6:22 / km
ahr:170 max:180 spiked:12/17c
QOC: Lake Fairfax Regional Park, VA. For the finals, racers were handicapped by both time like a reverse chase, and by course distances. The idea was that no matter who was running the first person to the finish line would be the winner for the day. I had qualified for the Final C course. The first starter took off 21:11 before me. Starting behind me were Ted Good (9 seconds), a young Norweigan (about +1 minute), and Dave Pruden (about 2 minutes).
Ted nearly caught me at the first control but had overshot on my right when I saw it on my left just into the woods from a field corner. We took separate routes to #2 with Ted climbing and me going around low to save strenghth for later. I got into some traffic from other runners and thought the control on a broad spur was too high. Like many mass start meets where we're both competing, Ted and I were together for a long way after that. Ted's tendancy to start faster and his generally better navigation kept him in front most of the way. When I got ahead going to #9, I made an error and chased him again going to #10. Eventually we got bunched-up with others and chaos ensued. It wasn't a completely mob-orienteering type of scene but there were trains and everyone was reacting to either leader errors or small mapping discrepancies. As we finished the last control in the woods we had a kilometer of open areas to go. I was in a pack with Ted Good leading, Dave Onkst, Dave Pruden and myself chasing. On a climb we were all fairly close to even and Ted faded. Going at threshold pace, I was in the lead but wasn't reading the map very well. Dave Pruden passed and stayed ahead to the end. I would gain on him only to wait at the punches on the last few controls. I'm not sure what my overall place for the day was. One thing to note was my heart rate measurements. Though I've only been measuring for about a year, I hit both the highest maximum and highest average rates that ever recorded. Since my times were not the fastest I've done in the last year, I conclude that I pushed hard while being out of shape. I find that significant because of the mental aspects of training and competing.
It was a fun day. We had nice food and club announcements afterward. Though just a local event, the volunteers for the event did a lot of extra preparations making it memorable.