I got the brilliant idea to run a 5K 13 days post Windermere Marathon. I figured my legs would be okay, but it wasn't the most brilliant idea I have ever had. I thought that the "speed" from the race would be a good workout for the Helvetia 1/2 Marathon that I was running the following weekend. I ran a little over 10 miles during the week so definitely had low mileage. Feet were feeling pretty happy with my temporary met pads so I figured to go ahead and attempt a 5K PR.
I have participated in this race two separate times. The first time I ran it, I completed the 10K in which I was the OA female winner. The following year I came back and was the OA female winner in the 5K. I definitely had set the standard high. I was going for a win and a PR.
I took Friday off as a recovery day and went to bed early. I was up at 5:30 the following morning to get a light breakfast and some coffee in me. We got to the race about 45 minutes before 8:00 am. The registration clearly said that the race started at 8:00 am SHARP. I got registered and then Mr. Healthy Diva and I left so he could go find a coffee stand.
My neighbor Sean ran his VERY first 5K. I am super proud of him!
I did a quick 1 mile warm up and stretched out. I had my warm up timed perfectly for the 8:00 am race start. However, at 7:55 am there was a line about 25 people deep still waiting to register. There was no way the race would start on time. The race eventually got underway about 8:10.
The start was a freaking
Each race had someone leading the way on a quad. The 10K guy was ready to go,
but the 5K guy was standing off to the side, clearly not paying attention. The
lady who was starting the race also clearly wasn’t paying attention to see that
both lead guys were not ready. All of a sudden she started the race and we went
barreling down the hill towards the lead vehicles. The 5K guy yelled (no joke),
“oh sh*t!” as he scrambled to get his quad started. I had already passed the 5K
lead guy and then realized that they said they changed the start of the course
so I had no idea which street to turn on since the course wasn’t marked. I was
sprinting straight ahead when I heard “5K turn right, turn right 5K!” There was
a huge cluster of people elbowing & stopping and acting confused by which
direction they had to go. Not the ideal race start by any means!
I finally get into my groove and then glanced down at my garmin to see I was running a 5:45 pace. Clearly not the pace I had in mind. I figured I needed to average a 6:30 (ish) pace to PR. I tried to make myself slow down, but I went into the first mile at 6:30 instead of a 6:40-6:45 which I had intended so that I could negative split.
The damage was done at that point. The way out to the turnaround point had a pretty strong headwind that I was fighting. I slowed down to a 6:45-6:55 pace going into the turn. I wasn’t too worried, because I knew that going back the wind would be at my back and hopefully I could dial in my pace. Unfortunately, that did not happen. Mile 2 was 6:56. My wheels literally fell off. I got about ½ mile from the finish and just stopped. My legs felt like bricks and I couldn’t breathe. Mile 3 was a 7:21. There was no way I could PR, but I was still mad at myself for stopping so close to the finish line. I could even see the stinking finish line and I still stopped. I only stopped for a couple of seconds, but it was enough for me to not break 21:00 minutes and for 2nd place AG/OA female. My official finish time was 21:07. Less than a minute off of my PR, but the fastest 5K I have run since February 2012. I will celebrate the little things.
Finishing on a very empty tank
My final thoughts:
I like the 5K even though it hurts. It is definitely a race I can see myself bettering my time in.
I probably could have been in closer range of my PR if I would have kept my pace at the beginning in check. I started out way too fast, which killed me at the end.
I really need to figure out my pacing. I used to be really good at pacing myself, but lately I am awful at it.
I think my legs felt heavy because I was only two weeks post marathon. It was a bit premature of me to think I could PR.
I had FUN which is something I haven’t experienced with running in a while.