Let's start with some honesty. Races are way more fun when you: 1) run well and 2) do it with friends! I guess I'll just say I LOVED this race.
A few weeks ago, I was secretly looking for a 5k in Marysville so that I could con my sister-in-law, Amy, and her friend, Mara, into running it. They are new runners and I'm trying my darndest to make them as obsessed as me! I stumbled upon the Union County Health Department's Grand Prix series which helps motivate the community to be fit. I was so excited about running in Marysville (where the hubs was born and raised). As a bonus, Jimmy's step mom, Joan, lives just off of the trail and was gracious enough to bundle up and cheer us on from her back yard!
It was a chilly morning. Low to mid 30's, light wind, and even some snow flurries! How cute. I was afraid I'd be the only crazy person racing in capris but I was not alone. I opted for the same basic outfit as my last 5k: capris, short sleeve T with arm warmers, gloves, and a ball cap.
The start was a little tricky because it was a very narrow part of the trail that went uphill followed by a sharp turn to the left. You can never tell by looking at folks how fast they are but I knew I didn't want to get stuck behind too many people at that narrow start. I decided to go for it and get close to the front.
As mentioned above, the start didn't give us any flat ground. After the immediate uphill (which didn't last long at all), we had a gradual incline for most of the first mile. There were a couple of ladies close to me that first 0.10 mile, and one even passed me up the initial hill. As soon as we started up the incline, I knew I could pass her back. Hills are one of my loves. I should have warned her about that! In addition to her, I passed a couple of dudes. Ladies, don't you love passing the guys?! After the initial ascent, we had a nice gradual decline which helped me get my breathing back in check. We were able to run on a pedestrian bridge that went over US-33. Kinda cool. Mile 1 was a solid [7:35].
I didn't expect to be able to run as fast as my last 5k, but I still wanted to be able to break 24 minutes. After seeing my split, I knew I had a chance to make it happen. I think that helped get me through mile two. This mile was uneventful until I remember that Joan (one of my mothers-in-law) was going to be out there waiting for us to run by. I saw her as we were approaching the turn-around. I get emotional when I see people I know on the course. I shed a couple of tears and realized my cry fest was messing up my breathing! I refocused as I was at the turn-around and asked the volunteer if I was the first female. When she told me "YES!," and I got super excited!! Never have I EVER been the first female. There was no way I was going to let this slip out of my hands.. I knew I'd be able to see the other runners at the turn around and noticed that the second place female was enough distance behind me that I had some wiggle room if I started to get tired...I just didn't want to take any chances of her catching me. Mile 2 was on par with the first one [7:34].
Mile 3.12 was all about staying consistent and trying not to let up. It was so frustrating because my legs wanted to go faster but my breathing would not allow me to do more. During both pregnancies, I've just focused on effort and not necessarily what my legs are saying. I just run a moderate to slightly hard effort and absolutely DO NOT go all out. My doc's only rule with running is that I never feel exhausted. With 0.60 to go, I saw an opportunity to pass someone. I passed this gentleman who had been running with this kid the entire time. When I say kid, he could not have been older than 10 (found out later he was 12!). Mr. Kid was far enough in front of me that I MIGHT have been able to catch him, but it would have been a long shot. That wasn't going to stop me from trying! I noticed he kept looking back to see how far away I was. Once he realized I was gaining on him, the little dude was GONE! I had to give him the biggest congrats afterwards for kicking my tail. Mile 3 was [7:39] with my last 0.12 averaging [6:49]. Official results include:
- 1st Overall Female
- 7th Overall Finisher (those pesky boys)
- Official time of 23:39!!!
Obviously, I was thrilled with my result! Not only did I meet my sub 24 goal, I snatched my first ever "Overall Female Winner" award!
|Maybe I was over-reacting a bit. I didn't think anyone could tell I was pregnant but Amy announced it as I was up there. I did the obligatory belly rub.|
Not to mention, I got to cheer on Amy and Mara who finished strong and never quit!
|Amy and Mara on the finishing stretch!|
Sure, this was a small race and non pregnant Lisa could have run 2+ minutes faster, but I won't let that take anything away from the fun I had out there today!
I am, again, so thankful to have legs to run. I feel incredibly blessed to continue doing what I love to do even while pregnant. I know things will only get harder as I grow larger, but I'm ready for the challenge!