Saturday, September 11, 2010

My First 5k Race

This morning my husband and I both ran our first 5k race together. (Technically he ran a race or two as a kid but that was a long time ago).

With regard to the c25k program, I am currently on week 6, able to run 2 miles with a 3 minute break in between, or able to run 1.75 miles straight through.

We got to the race location and I had a bit of anxiety that I wasn’t expecting. Before arriving, I just assumed it would be like any other run session; I didn’t know I was going to feel jittery and nervous about the race. I hadn’t seen anyone write about that before in the running communities (maybe it’s unique to me then?). The net effect was that my heart rate was up to 125bpm before I ever started running!  (Normal resting hr is 74 for me). My second surprise was the pace at which everyone took off from the starting line. From reviewing previous year’s race results I *knew* I would not be the slowest in the pack, but when I started off with everyone else and saw my Garmin was reporting my start speed as an 8.5 min mile I panicked. I was already toward the back of the pack and I didn’t want to be last but i knew there was no way I could maintain that kind of pace. Not when my normal run pace is just under 13 min/mile. After a third of a mile I had to slow to near my normal pace and was relieved to see plenty of others had slowed down as well also.

As expected, I was not able to run the 3.10 miles straight through- there was some walking intervals involved. However my run times were faster than ever before, giving me an overall pace of a 12:47 min mile. I placed second in my age group (30-34 and, yes, there were actually more than 2 of us in the bracket) and although toward the back of the back for most of the race am relieved to say I wasn’t last in the race (probably about 6-8 people behind me). 

Also it turns out that my first 5k was not actually a 5k but a 5k + .06 miles. Since it was organized by a church the theme was the 3:16 Freedom Run (as in John 3:16) and the actual distance was 3:16. This kinda screwed me up at the end b/c I launched into a sprint at the 3.05 mile mark at a pace of 7:30 min/mile. Would have been able to keep that up if the race had actually been a 5k, but with the surprise .06 at the end I had to slow back down. I nearly stopped and collapsed just before the end except that a good friend happened to be there (who is a teacher and coach by profession) and he came over and ran with me, cheering me on the last little bit. For this I was very grateful. My husband also ran beside me at the end too and that was awesome.

My husband performed spectacularly. He finished right around 23 minutes and placed first in his age bracket. He was in the top 10 finishers overall also. He is amazing and I am so proud of him!

Our next 5k is in October on halloween.

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