If you guys couldn’t tell on Friday I was a little bit nervous going into my 10K on Saturday. On Friday night I went to see Frozen with my friend it was so good and exactly what I needed to take my mind off the race and put me in a good mood! I highly recommend watching Disney movies before a race!
The race didn’t start until 8 am which was really nice. I was able to sleep until 6 and eat a pretty substantial breakfast of oatmeal and a banana.
When we arrived at the race I was surprised by how small the race actually was. There were only about 500 people running both the 5K and the 10K. This was perfect because as soon as I realized this the whole thing was suddenly a lot more low key, and all my nerves went right out the window!
I checked in, got my number, and did a 2 mile warm up around the fields near the starting line, got in some skips/strides, listened to my favorite pump up song (Hall of Fame by the Script), gave Henri one last kiss, and made my way to the starting line.
The goal that my coach and I discussed for this race was 37:30, which comes out to 6:02 pace. He recommended that I go out a little faster than that for the first mile and I came through the first mile marker in 5:52 – right on pace! By this time I was running all alone, just with the lead biker and I relaxed into the pace and just focused on his back and keeping a steady pace!
Around mile 1.5 we made a U-turn to head back towards the start/finish line (the 10K course was the 5K loop through twice). This was a fun part of the course because for the next mile I saw a lot of the other racers and many of them were cheering me on which was really nice of them – don’t you just love the running community!?
Mile #2 in 5:53.
Another great part of the race being so small was that the crowds cheering weren’t too big so it was really easy to hear Henri cheering for me as I came through for the 5K. Mile #3 in 5:57.
My coach had told me that the 4th mile was where it was going to get hard and it really did. The course was really boring and after passing the finish line around 3 miles it was mentally difficult to go out and do the same loop all over again. But I kept telling myself to PUSH through and luckily I didn’t slow down too much – mile #4 in 6:04.
By the beginning of the 5th mile I was starting to pass the 5K walkers and again they were all really encouraging and helped me to pick the pace back up! Mile #5 in 5:57.
During the last mile my feelings were all over the place – I was starting to get an ache in my stomach but my legs were feeling great! The biker told me that it was all downhill from there (very slightly but, hey) and I started to kick it in with about half a mile to go. I somehow managed to close with a 5:26 mile (plus some extra for the last .2). My final time was 36:21 an automatic PR and I finished a little over 3 minutes ahead of the next finisher!
[This race went better than I expected and solidified some of the ideas that I’ve been considering for a little racing season after Boston. I’ll fill you in later 😉 ]
They were handing out oranges after the race and I don’t know why every race doesn’t do this – so much better than bananas – I wanted to steal the whole box!
I’m so glad that Henri was there to cheer me on – he even missed watching his favorite team’s soccer game that morning. What a good hubby, huh?! Don’t worry I got him a nice, big breakfast burrito afterwards as a thank you!
The most important thing to do after a hard race is to recover so I got a shake out run in yesterday morning with my furry running buddy, did a WHOLE lot of foam rolling, and now I’m ready to get back at it this week!
How do you recover after a hard race?
Do you have a furry, four-legged running buddy? Tell me about them!