New Years Day I woke up by alarm...at 8:15 a.m. lol Wooo! That is serious snoozing in :)
I am not used to staying up late. I went to bed at 12:01 a.m. so I could get plenty of sleep for my 5K. I didn't even have a beer New Year's Eve. I like 'em, but a drink will zap my energy. I had a light breakfast, a banana with a few smears of peanut butter and coffee, since the race started at 11:00 a.m.
I registered for this race Wednesday night. I was on the fence about running a 5K. I have not run a shorter distance in a long time (2013). The last few weeks my attempts at speed work have been a bit half - hearted, mostly because I didn't want to have a heart attack in the heat. I was worried this wasn't my time. I do want to race more in 2016, but I want to run longer distances, but, I thought HEY! ...just do it.
The last official 5K I ran in 2014, the course was short, so I have never really felt good about the event or that it was a true PR. I knew the running club holding this event would have the distance correct. I just needed to line up, start, and do my best.
Friday I woke up to the same gray clouds that hovered above for two weeks, but the humidity was gone just like the weatherman promised. ❤
It was a beautiful 48 degrees, dew point at 45, 75% humid and dropping. I thought today is my day, all I have to do is make my legs go.
The start line was at a local health club just 25 minutes from home. I picked up my bib and swag, a cute hat.
I ran three quarters of a mile to warm up, visited the little girl's room more than once, and went to line up. I was in a tank top, shorts and knee socks and felt completely comfortable.
I planned to run this as hard as I could. My cloud nine time was 27:00
I have day dreamed about a sub 27, but I wasn't confident that was realistic for me.
There are some pretty hardcore runners in this bunch, so I lined up about mid-pack. This was clock timed. I didn't want the front pack to run over me, but I didn't want to be trapped doing a lot dodging.
The field took off and I tried to focus on pulling in through my nose and pushing out with my mouth, to get a good breathing pattern established. The course was a fairly flat out and back loop, in a neighborhood behind the health club.
I was telling myself this is:
- hang on
- push hard
- don't think
- just run
- breath deep
I took this pic right before the race started, mostly to show you the gray skies, but I got kilt guy in it.
Kilt guy was just ahead of me running with some friends. They were all running, talking and laughing at a very steady pace. I was at "just a few words pace". My Garmin beeped at mile one and I resisted the temptation to look at my lap time, I seem to go faster if I don't look. I knew I was running hard, and I wondered if I could even sustain the pace I was moving at. I pushed out the negative thought and said...TRY...it's short. I realized pretty early, I could probably PR if I could keep kilt guy's group in sight.
The course turned just a tick past half way. I took a cup of water and walked for a few seconds. Kilt guy started to pull away from me, but I could still see them, so I tried to do what I do during speed work. I pushed out a few short, fast bursts and let myself slow up and recover. At the mile two Garmin beep, I was tempted to look at my lap time again. I thought if it is really fast it'll motivate me, but I truly felt like I was doing all I could, and I had my peeps in sight, so I just pushed on. I asked myself if I could pick it up at all. I didn't think so.
I started thinking, "How much further???" I finally peeked at my watch, 2.50 miles down. I told myself, "Don't blow it now!" But I was so tired! The last little bit I was slowing down. I heard a little voice from behind my right shoulder...a sweet girl said, "Don't slow down now." I told her I was fading. She smiled, she said, "It is just a short sprint!" and then picked it up and zoomed on by. I could hardly see kilt guy for the first time, they had picked it up. I kind of blur when I am running this hard, I turned up my music and pushed. I was getting closer to kilt guy. My heart was pumping really hard.
As I approached the clock I saw I had the chance to sub 27 and I couldn't believe it!
Whew! I was tuckered out as I crossed the line. I knew my Garmin and the clock were seconds apart, but I knew I had nailed it.
At the finsh line, I told kilt guy's group I tried to keep them in sight and they helped me get a PR. We all high fived.
I went and ran an easy cool down mile for my legs. My pounding heart appreciated it too.
I may have left a few seconds on this course during mile two, but I did not leave much. This felt like maximum effort for me.
A great way to start the year off!
My official time 26:49
367 finishers for this event
I was 148th overall, this is a hard core group. The front pack of guys all ran it sub 17.
Tell me, is there a good way to strategize a 5K?
Do you love running them?
Have you ever tried to visually latch onto someone during a race?