Monday, September 01, 2008

PR: 5k....DNS: 10K

I was all about my first 10k of the season. I rode over to the Rhinebeck Mad Dash with a group of my Marathon Project buddies, and didn't realize until 10 minutes before the start of the 5K (and 40 minutes before the 10k) that everyone else I'd come with was doing the earlier, shorter race. If I'd done the 10, they'd have had to wait an extra hour or more for me to return. Everyone seemed unwilling to do that, as it's the day before school starts and they wanted to get back. I was really mad at first - I felt very disappointed and let down. (It would have been perfectly easy to drive myself had I known.)

But as soon as the race went off, I realized I was feeling very strong and energetic, so I decided to make the best of it and run as hard as I could. I reasoned that I'd just done a 9-miler last weekend so I knew I could run 3 easily. It was a cool morning, a lovely course, wide and flat with rolling hills - and when I hit the 1-mile mark before 11 minutes (roaringly fast for me) I thought I might be able to beat my best time. I chugged along, stopping to walk only a few brief times, and was even passing people in the final mile. It wasn't until the last quarter-mile that I started to feel like I was reaching my limit, but I've learned that is probably some kind of anxiety response - I often find myself wanting to walk when I know I have only a minute or two to go. Interestingly someone who was banging a drum called out something funny to me - don't remember what - and when I laughed, all the anxiety disappeared and I felt fine - strong enough to run my hardest for the last little bit.

My time was 36:30 - just about 12-minute miles, and about 2 minutes faster than my previous best this year, on what was almost entirely the same course (but hotter, if I recall correctly.) I felt fantastic after - who would have ever thought that 3 miles would seem easy to me! I still want to do a 10k soon - looking into options now! (PS as it turns out, everyone took so much time warming down, getting snacks, and chit-chatting that we didn't leave until almost when I'd have come back from the 10k anyway! But I have no hard feelings - it was a great morning!)

Edited to add: According to the official race results, my pace was 11:47 - that is way faster than I've ever run before! I was also 31 out of 35 in my age group. Not last or even second to last! How about that!


Lisa Slow-n-Steady said...

Way to be flexible. And if you felt Fantastic afterwards, it must have been a good choice. :)

LBTEPA said...


Michelle said...

Woo-hoo!! Great job!! Way to not let a change of plans take the wind out of your sails :)

Jennifer said...

WTG! I just ran my first 5K today and am looking forward to my next.