|Getting ready to head to the race. I asked Jimmy to take a pic of my belly, and James insisted on being part of it! Love that boy.|
It's a well known fact amongst my running crew that 5k's SUCK!! I mean, run your butt off for 3.1?! I'd rather slow down a bit and run longer. It's also an understood that we must put ourselves through the torture of a 5k in order to be better runners! At least that's what we tell ourselves.
I registered for this 5k recently...mostly because it was Gahanna (only 2 miles from my house!). It somehow came up in conversation with Marion, and she decided to join me! I really enjoyed the course. It was all paved trail except for a small section that was wooden bridge. They just added a section of trail near the Gahanna Golf Course and I haven't had the chance to check it out until today. The course included only one significant incline and decline that occurred in the first and last half mile.
Being pregnant, you never know what to expect. It's hard to make goals because you just don't know how the body will respond on any given day. I ignore the no goal rule because Lisa Davis always has to have an agenda during a race. It helped that I ran Warm Up for Boston two weeks ago because I had an idea of what I could do. I averaged 7:53 pace for 6.1 miles, so I figured it was reasonable to run in the 7:40's. Based on that, I decided I wanted to run a 24 minute 5k (7:44 average).
|Obligatory pre-race selfie. The sun was out, therefore, stylish glasses were as well...at least Marion's are stylish!|
Despite a craptastic warm up, I felt great after starting (don't we all feel great the first quarter mile?!). I noticed I was running a 7 minute pace and knew I needed to tone it down to avoid barfing and/or crashing. The first incline occurred in the first half mile of the trail. It was more gradual than steep. It was very tolerable, but my body just wasn't warmed up enough for it to feel tolerable at the time. As soon as I reached the top, the first decline started. I felt like it was steeper than the other part of the hill. I felt myself flying down, but my body just didn't feel ready to go fast yet. Mile 1 [7:45].
The next mile was flat as a pancake. I finally passed this chick that passed me on the downhill. I never saw her again until we had to turn around to go back. There was this gentleman in front of me the entire race that I couldn't seem to catch. I just stayed focused on him the entire time. It kept me motivated through that mile. Mile 2 [7:41].
Since this was an out and back course, I knew I'd have to tackle that incline on the way back. I just kept in mind that the more gradual decline would immediately follow. For whatever reason, I felt this sudden burst of energy in the last mile. I'm not sure if it was Baby Boo Deux giving me magical powers or Garth Brooks singing Callin' Baton Rouge in my ear. Either way, I was feeling awesome! That gentleman was still in front of me, but I noticed that I was edging closer and closer as we approached the incline. Since I love hills and tend to attack them, I always assume I will beat any of my unknown competitors to the top. At least that's what I tell myself to motivate me to get up the thing! My tactic did not fail this time around. I passed the guy a quarter of the way up the hill, told him "Good job! Now let's finish strong!!," and never saw his backside again! Mile 3 [7:37].
At this point, the finish line was visible, and your only choice is to finish hard. I ran my last 0.08 miles at a 6:26 pace. Garmin time was 23:36. Chip time from official results:
|Post-race. The man who's bum I kicked on the hill (who we also befriended afterwards), was kind enough to take a pic for us. Our friend, Dani, pointed out the difference in race attire! Can you determine the freeze baby?|
Needless to say, I was thrilled with the result. Through this whole pregnancy process, I tell myself to never feel exhausted, never over-do it (opposite of what I'd do in a normal race situation!). It's exciting that, for now, I can tolerate some faster miles. It's just a good confidence booster!
As I look into my pregnancy racing future, I'm totally freaked out. In two weeks, I have my first double race day (5k in the a.m. and 4 miler in the evening). I'm not too concerned about that as much as I am about running a half marathon in four weeks! OMG, what the hell was I thinking?! On top of that, I have the Flying Pig Half four weeks after that. GoodNESS. I'm not the brightest crayon in the box sometimes.
Anyway, I'm still feeling blessed to have two legs that allow me to run. Thanks to all of my friends who sent me sweet text messages today and thanks to Marion for a fun morning! Love you guys!!