Woke up at 6:20 and saw it was cloudy and cool. I do terribly in the heat, so I was pumped to race.
I met up with Pam, who was running the race as well and we stood in a ridiculously long line to get my bib. I think the race was a ton bigger than last year's so they weren't prepared for the crowds.
Pam and I hung out in the starting corrals which was awesome because I tend to get a little psycho nervous before races. Having her there to talk to definitely helped me not having a nervous breakdown. We agreed that no matter how many races we do, we still get butterflies at the start. SO true. I will never stop nearly peeing on myself out of nerves in the corral.
The race was a bit delayed due to the crappy logistics, but it didn't really bother me. More time to procrastinate actually racing!
Finally...we were OFF!
Start: For the first time in the history of the world I went out at the pace I wanted to. Possibly due to getting "unwarmedup" from standing the corral so long, but I'll take it.
Self Talk: "Strong but relaxed...strong but relaxed..."
First Mile: 6:38.
The course started curving in and out of random exhibits. It was pretty cool, actually. I felt like I was in a video game and some crazy clowns would come out of the booths and start chasing me.
I was keeping pace with a long haired dude running barefoot. Normally I like hippies, but this guy kept on boxing me out every time there was a curve. No idea if it was on purpose or not (probably not), but I got frustrated at some point and muttered "seriously dude?" after trying to pass for the 1000x time. Then I felt bad and rude. I doubt he was trying to be a jerk, but racing sometimes brings out a weird aggressive side of me.
Self talk: "Relaxed...keep pushing! No slowing down from that first mile!"
Mile 1.5: Water station. I take water, throw it on myself and then throw the cup on the ground. Then I see a trash can. For the second time in a couple minutes, I felt rude.
Mile 2: 13:20 (6:42 second mile)
Self Talk: "You're never going to PR...I can feel you slowing down...just admit you suck at running"
Then: "Stop doing this to yourself, just focus...".
Self Talk: "Only about 4 more minutes to go. You can run for 4 minutes. That's less than 1000 meters. You CAN run 1000 meters, can't you?"
I ridiculously started quoting Pre in my head: "To give less than your best is to sacrifice the gift, to give less than your best is to sacrifice the gift..."
Mile 3: 20:03. "Go Go GO!!"
|How I felt.|
Final Time: 20:39, 4th woman.
Pam also kicked some booty coming in just a hair after me and PRing as 5th woman. We didn't run the race together, but it was awesome having her there! She is ridiculously nice and supportive!
Post race, I decided to see if I won any sort of age group prize.
After asking a couple volunteers about prizes who gave me confused looks and asked "You got a race t-shirt, right?", I figured it was a lost cause. :).
Last Thoughts: I don't want to over dramatize this race, because I fully realize that running a mid-20s 5k, is not really that impressive. I didn't set any records or save any lives. At the same time, I've been running for 14 years and have never broken 21. And it's always bugged me. And I finally did it.
So this race feels almost as good as a BQ to me.
I celebrated by getting a mini donut from Starbucks and trying on everything in the store at the local Lululemon. It was awesome.