I had initially planned to race a 3 or 6 miler on Thanksgiving morning, but when it was forecasted for well below zero, and Friday was showing a heat wave, I decided to sleep in and race Friday instead. Great decision. Unfortunately that means I spent $45 on a 5k. I often race half marathons cheaper than that, uff da.
My first race as a 605 Running Club Member!
I had to head downtown really early as race day registration ended an hour and a half before the race actually started. Luckily people were gathering at 605 Running Co. pre-race, so I did some shopping downtown and then headed over there to wait. We snapped a picture in front of the store before we made our way to the 6:30pm start, and after talking to Greg, I decided I'd try to stick with him, because his goal race pace was similar to mine.
The race was an out and back to start along the street that would feature the Parade of Lights as soon as we were done running, so it was packed with "spectators." They weren't there for us, but it definitely felt like it while we were running. The first stretch was a gradual uphill, and I was pretty pleased that my pace was right around 8:40. I was hoping I could run around an 8:30ish for the 5k. I stuck with Greg until our first turn around, and when I thought I could speed up on the gradual downhill, my legs already felt tired. (sidenote: this 5k was the longest run I've done in awhile. Uh...ooops!)
While I felt like I was slowing down, my pace ended up being almost exactly the same. I probably went out too aggressively in the opening uphill mile and paid for it, but that's ok. Run and learn.
Mile 1 8:40
We got a nice boost of cheers each time we passed in front of the running store, and hopefully they snapped some pics of us flying. Once we started heading toward the falls, we lost all spectators but also got to run through the falls all lit up for the holidays.
Mile 2 8:38
Right around 2.3 miles my body was ready to be done. This also coincided nicely with the twisty turny windy bike path that was the most intense uphill of the race. Blah. In the past, this race has been considerably short, (2.8-2.9 miles) so I started doing a countdown to being done. I do this a lot in races because counting takes my mind off the pain, and I like to get to the finish line before I hit zero. Unfortunately they adjusted the race course, so it was actually on this year, so I got down to zero and still had .2 to run. GAH!
Mile 3 9:15
Hah, told you I faded in the third mile. I saw Greg in front of me as I was nearing the 5k so I was able to kick it in a bit for a strong finish.
.1 :48 (8:20 pace, 7:28 max pace)
I finished 3.1 in 27:15 for a pace of 8:49.
The good news is that I didn't have any knee or IT band issues after the race, so I think all of my yoga is helping to stretch and strengthen my issues, and it's no surprise that my endurance has suffered a bit with running taking the backseat to yoga. It was a blast and reminded me how much I love racing, and lining up for races with friends.