Hi guys! Thanks so much for your well wishes yesterday- it worked! When I took up running last year, my ultimate goal was to run a 5k in under thirty minutes. Why, I don’t know. Just an arbitrary number that sounded legit to me. I ran my first race (the Crossings Challenge) on September 27th and crossed the finished line at 31:50. I was incredibly pleased, as I was aiming for a sub-33 for my first time (again, just a random number I selected based on my couch to 5k training). Crossing the finish line got me hooked on running races. It is true what they say- a 5k is truly a gateway race, as I later went on to run a 14k and 15k and am training for my first half. I went on to run a few more 5ks, setting a PR this past New Year’s day of 30:37. So close yet so far from sub-30.
Last night, I shattered my goal and ran the 5k in 28:13. YES! I was SO excited to cross the finish line and see 28 on the board. I feel like I have come so far in the past year. Less than a year ago, I was nervous about my ability to even run a 5k. Now, I KNOW that I can run this upcoming half and run it well, so long as I put in the requisite training. It feels really go to have shaved over three and a half minutes off of my first 5k time.
Okay, let’s get to the race recap, shall we? The race began at 6:30 P.M., which I was a huge fan of. I definitely think my body clock has me functioning better in the early evening than it does in the early morning. No sleep running during this race! I arrived around an hour early and hung around with my friend Melissa, stretching and talking. I was immediately impressed with the race- the entry fee was only $20 and I received a glass similar to the ones we received at the boilermaker PLUS a pretty cute tech shirt. Sa-weet.
I looked over at the finish line and noticed that there weren’t any timing mats. Then I realized that we weren’t handed chips. Apparently this race was all on one timer, which is kind of a bummer if you don’t start up at the front. I was surprised by the number of runners. I was expecting it to be a lot smaller for some reason! I think there were probably around 300 or so runners but I’m not sure.
We started to line up and I felt ridiculously nervous. Get it together Katie, I thought to myself. This isn’t your first race, ya dumb! I just couldn’t shake the nervousness. Melissa and I lined up towards the front of the start line. I programmed my garmin to start beeping if I dropped below a 9:15/mile, much to the chagrin of those around me later in the race probably :p
After a little speech by the organizer, we were off! There was a bullhorn, but it didn’t work right away. No matter. Um, now I realize why I usually don’t start in the front. Holy speed demons! I looked down at my garmin and was running somewhere in the six and change minute mile range. Uh yeah, WAAY too fast. Just run your own race, I told myself. I dropped back and let my heart rate get back to a decent clip. My heart was still beating fast. I told myself to get in the zone. Whenever I think of getting in the zone, I think of that ridiculous youtube video, “my new haircut.” Some Jersey shore wannabe parodies the typical stereotype and the dude in the video says “Not now chief, I’m in the $$#@%$ zone.” Yeah. I’m a flipping weirdo.
The first mile went by in a blur. I looked down at my garmin- first mile in 8:49! Woohoo, probably the fastest mile I ever ran. The course was out and back, and the first mile incorporated a “trail”- really, just a short run up a little wooded path. There was a water station at the end of the first and second mile, which I didn’t utilize because I had my trusty handheld water bottle.
Mile two was okay. My pace dropped here and there and my garmin yelled at me to remind me to speed up. I felt bad for being that girl with the garmin going off but I was looking to PR! At some point during the second mile I heard someone coming up behind very heavily. What on earth? Yes, I was about to get smoked by an eighty year old. No lie. It was so awesome to see someone still running well at that age.
The race took us through a residential neighborhood, and some folks were out clapping and supporting. I tried to smile and wave at everyone, because I really appreciate the support. After I passed mile marker two I was having a tough time maintaining a 9:15/mile pace. I probably ticked off a lot of people with my garmin. Sorry! I was ticking myself off. Ha. Anyway, with a half a mile to go I kicked it up and tried to finish strong. I hovered around 8:40/mile until the last .1 of the race- I could feel myself starting to drop heavily. I pushed through and crossed the finish line at 28:13. Goal: achieved 😀
Immediately I looked for somewhere to sit down. However, Melissa and I caught up with Suzy, who I was so excited to finally meet in person! We hung around and chatted for a bit and then had a delicious dinner at Moe’s. Suzy was able to snag some pictures of me finishing:
Approaching the finish line
Almost there. And I think I have a mid foot strike- YES!
Overall, it was a great race. I would definitely run it again!
- Awesome tech t-shirt and souveneir glass
- Lots of gatorade at the end
- Flat course
- Decent crowd support, especially given the size of the race
- Not chip timed
My split times were as follows:
- Mile 1- 8:49 (fastest pace 6:13 eep)
- Mile 2-9:05 (fastest pace 7:41)
- Mile 3- 9:12 (fastest pace 7:58)
- Mile 3-3.12- 1:04 (8:38 pace)
Not exactly negative splits, haha. I’ll take it though!
Lastly, some pictures of the swag:
I spy a cute puppy in the left of the picture. Holding up the shirt with the glass. And my celebratory honeymoon beer. Not really working so I put the shirt on:
Good stuff. Thank you for reading! Make sure to check back later in the week- I have a post regarding all of your amazing comments on my Eat Pray Love post– some of your “words” were really inspiring! Have a great day friends 🙂