The nuts and bolts: I ran w/ #12 - his time was 29:16 for 4 miles, officially I was 3 seconds behind him - got stuck in traffic in the end. His time was 24 seconds faster than last year, overall average pace was 7:19 per mile.
He still is in 2nd place for his age group after 2 of the 4 races - is way behind the 12 year old in 1st, comfortably ahead of 3rd place (10 yr old) by 2 minutes net time.
I'm not really happy about the outcome, I would like to say I am over it, meaning pleased - but it has taken me over a day to at least try and move on and look forward to the next race.
It's not that my expectations were not met - I was kind of expecting 29 flat. The race just didn't pan out how I wanted. Selfishly speaking - I felt like I could have smoked him by at least a minute. Several times throughout I made a conscious decision to slow down and ease back to him.
After thinking about it for the last day and a half, I've blaming myself for him not doing better.
The race started fast - that was the start of the problem. We went through the first 1/2 mile well under 7 min pace. First mile was 6:50. From then on - I sensed that he was just holding on for dear life the rest of the way. It didn't matter what I said or didn't say. Or if I ran behind, beside or ahead of him - the average pace slowly but steadily eased back - with that we got passed by more and more people. I should have made him start slower.
Through 2 miles and the turnaround in 14:15. On Tuesday this is where he took off, on Saturday I could tell he was spent. For the next 2 miles I got more and more frustrated - looking back - I was frustrated at myself more than anything. In hindsight - coming back in 15 minutes is still good and I really should be proud of that. He did gut it out - I could tell he was having a bit of a miserable time for those last 2 miles. Then he also managed a good kicking sprint at the end.
It is a lesson on "what if". That will be applied for the next race (5 miler). The "what if" then will be: Dad kind of holding him back at the start. Prior to the race we both will be establishing the realistic goal finish time - figuring out what pace to run it - and start it, slowly. For the first mile at least, hopefully 2 or 3 - we will maintain that pace, then see what the final section brings us.
Bottom line - it's not that I expect great things for my kids, but I do hope for great things. I need to provide the opportunity for those things - be they great results or great efforts. In the end - doesn't matter what they can or can't do - they are still my kids, they can run and play, they are smart and fun, they don't have any funky diseases (unless you count a noticeable amount of flatulence) - I hope they can be accused of having parents who care about them.
Now, when was our next training run together?