It's over, man. Let her go.

Riverside Run

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Member Since:

Jan 04, 2010



Goal Type:

Recover From Injury

Running Accomplishments:

In late 2008 I decided I needed to get in better shape and started running again.  I ran my first formal road race ever, a half marathon, in late 2009.

(unofficial) Track 1 Mile - 7:32 (4/24/2010)  6:56 (9/27/2010)

5k - 27:31 - Riverview Run on 06/11/2010
22:39 - Gatorade Steelers 5k on 09/04/2010

10k - 50:43 - Riverside Run on 04/10/2010

Half - 2:02:58 - Just a Short Run on 03/27/2010
1:51:47 - IKEA Montour Trail Half on 09/11/2010

Short-Term Running Goals:

2011 Races:

Sept 25 - The Great Race 10k (59:15)
Nov 5 - Dirt Monster 5mi (52:59)

2012 Races:

June 8 - Riverside 5k  (27:49)
Sept 2 - Gatorade Steelers 5k (route) with Steve!  (27:39)
Sept 30 - The Great Race 10k (route)  (53:48)
Nov 3 - The Dirt Monster 5mi (52:55)

2013 Races:

May - Pittsburgh Marathon (started, but DNF about the half way point)
June - Riverview 5k  - Bummed I missed signing up for this one. It's one of my favorites!
Sept - Gatorade/Steelers 5k. (Signed up!)
Sept - IKEA Montour Trail Half  (prob not, but leaving it on here)
Sept - The Great Race 10k (My Running 101 goal race)
Nov - Dirt Monster 5mi (Gotta do it again no matter what!)

Long-Term Running Goals:

Finish recovering from my injuries and build mileage.  That is all.


My name is Wes, I'm married with two wonderful children. The nickname BaldNSpicy came from the fact that I have been balding for a (long) while now and spicy for my love of very spicy foods (Thai and extremely hot wings are my favorites).  If eating doesn't bring me near tears and leave me sweating, it's not worth eating.  :-)

Oh, and I'm also known for my doorags.

Favorite Quotes:

"Running without hills is like motorcycling without corners." - rAtTLeTrAp

"Excellence is not a singular act, but a habit.  You are what you do repeatedly." - Shaquille O'Neal

"A man can fail many times, but he isn't a failure until he begins to blame somebody else."  - John Burroughs

Favorite Blogs:

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Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 0.00 Year: 0.00
NB 758s #2 Lifetime Miles: 596.90
Brooks Cascadia 7 Lifetime Miles: 165.17
Race: Riverside Run (6.2 Miles) 00:50:43, Place overall: 56, Place in age division: 4
Slow milesFast milesTotal Distance

I decided a couple of days ago to run this 10k.  The weather was looking nice and two of my buddies were running in it so they convinced me to do it.  I figured I would do it and finally set my 10k PR.  I finished, therefore, I set a PR!  Woo hoo!  LOL  The race is somewhat small (only 203 10k runners, hence my 4th place AG finish, and had I run the 5k instead, I would have won my AG with my 3.1mi split - yeah, it was small) but it was a lot of fun.  My daughter decided she wanted to come with me and I welcomed that since then she could tote my bag and take pictures, etc.  I had to register before the race since online registration closed last week.  They gave me my timing chip, then pointed me to a line where they were handing out the t-shirts.  We stood in line for a couple of minutes.  While in line, my daughter said "I wonder if they'll give me one."  I said, "Hey, if they offer you one, take it."  They asked for her size, so she got a shirt too.  Needless to say, she was excited she came.

The race starts right in front of Heinz Field, where our beloved Steelers play, along the riverside trail, out to the 31st Street bridge, around the little island and back to the stadium via the trail.  I know Twinkies was getting excited when I mentioned trail, but it's mostly paved with some hard packed areas so not really trail, trail.

I met up with my buddy from work at the starting line since I knew he'd be at the front (he took 6th - 34:25).  I very briefly met his All-American friend that he ran with at college - he took first, I think, with a 30:29 (4:55 pace!).  This is the same guy that won the Half I ran last month with a 1:07:xx, setting a new course record.  Unbelievably fast...  

After checking out the starting line and what it looked like from up there, I took my spot about 1/3 of the way back.  The trail isn't super narrow at the start, but there were enough people that I was having to weave in and out and got stuck behind people for about 1/4-1/2 of a mile before things started to loosen up.  I looked at the Garmin at one point during that time and saw a 10:20 pace!  CRAP!  I was getting really antsy, and I could have started out farther up front, but I was worried I'd be one of those people who thought they were faster than they really were and I didn't need people cursing at me as they fought to get around me.

After getting out of the crowd and I could better pick my pace, I settled into a "fast" pace that I knew was faster than I could probably sustain the whole race, but what the heck, why not go for it.  The first mile, I wasn't passed by anyone, but passed plenty.  The next 4 miles, I got passed by 4 dudes and 2 chicks.  I caught one dude and one chick by the end.

Paces:  8:11, 7:45, 8:06, 8:27, 8:25, 8:16, (.2) 7:34

I had thought that sub 50:00 was going to be tough, but possible.  I fell apart a little there around mile 4 & 5 and lost a little focus which hurt me a little.  The first mile was a little more tiring than it probably should have been fighting to get out of the crowds, but it did save me from going out way too fast.  I'll have to check the Garmin once I plug it in and see what my pace was between the first 1/2 mile and the second 1/2 mile.  I'm guessing I was close to a 7:30 the second half, maybe faster as I tried to make up for lost time.  I was happy with my splits.  I ran well, enjoyed the race, and even left myself a little room for another PR in a couple of months.  :-)  The race was well organized, the food at the end was pretty good, and best of all, it supported a good cause (the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center's Adoption Services).  Plus, my daughter got a shirt!  What more could I/we have asked for?

Just a bit of commentary:  My buddy is one of the nicest guys I've ever met.  He's freakin' fast but is incredibly humble, and you'd never know he was an elite runner from the way he acts and carries himself.  He's a member of the elite running team here in Pittsburgh, but yet he's always willing to go on runs with me, give me pointers, he designed a marathon training program that he teaches for our employees through our company's fitness center (for everyone from first timers to experienced marathoners), and is always very positive and encouraging.  The guy is 25 and doesn't mind helping out a 39 year-old wanna be speedster. 

On the flip side, and maybe it was just because the other guy didn't know me, his buddy that won looked me up and down and then just took off on a quick little warm up jog.  I hope I didn't embarrass my buddy by coming up to him, but I knew he probably wouldn't stick around by the time I got in and as small as the race was, I didn't see him before then.  I missed seeing him at the Half so I figured I'd at least say hello this time. 

I know people come in all shapes, sizes, and personalities, but I hope that when I'm winning my AG and qualifying for Boston that I'll be half as humble and helpful to others as he is to me.  Something to think about...

NB 758s #2 Miles: 7.20
Weight: 166.00
From KP on Sat, Apr 10, 2010 at 20:26:37 from

beloved steelers??? pssssshhhhh....

wour friends friend is super fast! WOW! what an amazing 10k time.

nice PR!

From baldnspicy on Sat, Apr 10, 2010 at 20:54:00 from

KP - this is Steeler Nation, but come on into the 'Burgh and make that noise. They arrest people for that. LOL

I should have mentioned I was rolling my eyes when I said "beloved" since our whole family finds the obsession with the Steelers sickening. We did invest in some Steelers shirts for our kids when we moved here 4 years ago because we didn't want them to get pummeled at school for not supporting the team. Seriously, it's nuts here. People tailgate for days before a game.

My daughter has put her life on the line many times in the last two years as she's decided to "innocently" wear the opposing team's colors as ribbons in her hair, as a necklace, or something just to upset her diehard Steeler friends. "Oh, are blue and silver the Lions colors? I had no idea! I just liked the ribbons."

Yeah, those guys are fast! I couldn't imagine flying along at that speed.

From Mattrow on Sat, Apr 10, 2010 at 20:59:31 from

Nice race. Placing 4th is nice. You can't control who shows up.

Yes your friends are fast but we can't hold that against them.

From RivertonPaul on Sat, Apr 10, 2010 at 23:27:33 from

Great report. Good job.

From baldnspicy on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 00:25:03 from

One of these days I hope that my reports will take less time for all of you to read than it takes me to run a mile. So either I need to run faster or write less. lol Sorry for the long reports...

From Burt on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 02:12:19 from

What more could you ask for? How about your beloved Pirates beating the D-backs? Oh, that did happen. What a day for you.

Great job on the PR! You're just gonna get faster and faster, too.

From flatlander on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 16:47:58 from

What a day, great race and great report. Loved your commentary about running royalty. I think it is great that everybody can participate and associate regardless of ability. Your friend's friend is the exception that proves the rule. And I'm going to hold you to that when you qualify for Boston, or win it.

From Twinkies on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 17:31:03 from

A paved trail is better than no trail at all. Trail running rocks.

Congrats on getting a PR. May there be many more to come.

From rAtTLeTrAp on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 18:31:54 from

Those 8's are dangerously close to 7's! You are not "fast", you are fast! Great job!

From rAtTLeTrAp on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 18:34:04 from

Twinkies is right. trail running rocks... and roots :)

From SlowJoe on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 19:25:05 from

Wow, great job Wes. You are getting "fast" very "quickly." Does quickly need quotes too? Anyway looks like a success. Just think with a good block of injury-free training time how "fast" you'll get.

From baldnspicy on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 19:37:34 from

Matt & Paul - Thanks!

Burt - we're 3-2 so we're still over 500 for the year. Thanks for making us look good. Our family DOES love the Pirates! I can't wait until my buddy and I do our first All You Can Eat game. I'll be running my shorts off for a week after that game!

Flat - I'm glad others feel the same way. I guarantee I'll either qualify for Boston *OR* win it, but not both. Just promise me you'll bring me back to earth if I ever become a pompous a$$ - an old, 700mi shoe to the nose should do it...

Twinkie - I'll be running my first trail race this year - a 5 miler called the Dirt Monster. It's in November and I'm told it would live up to it's name if it were called Mud Monster instead. Should be're invited, as are all FRBers. I'll even pay the entry fee for the first 5 that sign up. You're responsible for your flight. :-)

Trap - I'm quite confident I'll be hitting 7s consistently by the end of the summer. Sub 1:45 in October, here I come! Thanks for calling me fast, but until I'm hitting sub 7:00 on the track, I have to use the quotes. :-)

From baldnspicy on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 20:11:44 from

Joe - missed your comment. Quickly doesn't require quotes per my notice, so it's cool. It was a success and I'm fully recovered, no soreness, and feeling great going into this next week, so it should go well. I hope after a good injury-free block this summer, quotes will no longer be necessary!

From Steve on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 21:37:20 from

Congratulations on the run! Great splits! Nice picture, I gotta get out to see that stadium some time.

From baldnspicy on Sun, Apr 11, 2010 at 22:39:23 from

Come on out, Steve...just bring some $$$. Even the nose bleeds are about $100, and that's to sit in the freezing cold. Or, you can take that $100 and sit in the nice, warm, sunny spring weather, take in 5 or so Pirates games and enjoy a Sugardale hot dog or two. :-)

From seeaprilrun on Mon, Apr 12, 2010 at 09:13:44 from

I like the long race reports so keep it up haha! It's awesome to know what goes through people's heads when they are running "fast"! Good read! I'm still a novice, but it seems to me that as a whole runners are generally a nice bunch of people. It seems you can strike up a conversation with just about anyone on a starting line or during a long race. I understand your frustration about getting caught in the crowd at the beginning of a race--just go for it and line up near the front!

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