It's only 3 weeks since the marathon, but I was anxious to get back out there and race some shorter stuff. So I found a little race that promised to be low-key, small, and offer a good chance at a medal! Because my low self-esteem constantly needs more medals. The race was 3 days before I turned 50, so I was tempted to fudge on my birth date to skip into the higher bracket, but decided to stick with "honesty is the best policy" and put myself into the 45-49 group. More on that later.
the DW and I headed to the race on a beautiful sunny day, and found
maybe 30 people there 40 minutes before the start. OK! Really small
race! By race time, there was about 150 people, so I knew I would almost
definitely get a medal. I was hoping to beat my recent PR of 20:20 and
maybe get a shot at sub 20. But I wasn't feeling too zippy lately, so I
really just hoped to do my best and break 21.
Since it was an
Easter race, (despite abolishing the word Easter from the race name. It
was the "Rabbit Run 5K" on the day before Easter, and they had an egg
hunt and Easter baskets for the kids) I went ahead and wore some bunny
ears (along with DW who was spectating). We were the only people with
any costume accessories, but I have quit caring what people think about
The race started on a track in
a stadium, and the course was basically one big lap around the stadium
parking lot - twice, and then back on the track for a lap and a half.
Possibly the worst course ever. A bunch of teenagers led the way, and we
were quickly funneled into 3 lanes after the first curve. No problem
with this crowd.
bib number was 410 - a good omen, since that is my birthday! Goal pace
was about 6:30. After 200 meters, G said 6:07. Whoa, there buddy! I
dialed it back a little, but when the pace got down to 6:30, I had to
start pushing again, and soon remembered the familiar pain of a 5K.
Alright, it is only 20 minutes, I can do this. I was passing people and
feeling pretty good. Saw a 1 mile marker, but G said .75. Uh oh. Went
through the first mile in 6:36 and was picking it up.
Second mile I
felt pretty good, and was still passing people and feeling OK. Saw the 2
mile marker and G said 1.65 miles. Oh boy. It looked like it would be a
short course. 2nd mile was 6:30. The last mile I was neck and neck with
a teenager and that helped me push it up a bit, but I was just hanging
on. G said 2.5 miles, annnnnd we turned back into the stadium for one
final lap. Crap. Knowing the course was short definitely took the edge
off of my final kick, but I maintained and got to the finish in 18:20. G
said 2.82 miles.
Flying to the finish!
I did some extrapolating. My pace for the last mile was 6:22. Assuming I
could have held that for another 0.3 gets me to 20:06 at 3.1. So I
definitely would have beat my PR of 20:20. Oh well. I plan to go sub 20
next time anyway.
I finished 12th overall. There was one guy just 5
seconds ahead of me that looked to be my age, but it turned out he was
50. So I ended up winning the 45-49 group and getting a medal, and I
would have been 2nd if I had lied about my age. Yay Karma!
A friend of mine came and ran 38 minutes, and won her age group! Medal shot!
DW and I hanging out.
Happy Easter everybody!