I'm one of the few people who actually has to work tomorrow, so this will be short :)
Steve and I did this race last year and had a blast. It's a little smaller and less insane than the really big 5K that's run here in town, and they limit the field to 700 people. I think they must have come close to their limit, but the crowd was very manageable. I didn't really know what to expect going into this race. Unlike Steve, I haven't run a 5K since doing this one last year. I've had one speed workout as of late, and that was just last week. I had an idea of what a good time would be for me but didn't really know if it was achievable at this point in the game. If nothing else, it would serve as a good baseline marker.
Steve and me before the start of the race. Notice that I'm wearing my lucky sweatshirt.
As soon as they shouted "Go!" I tried to settle into a comfortable speedy pace. Last year, the course was measured in km, so I was expecting it this year too. It was a two-loop course, so when I saw a 3 soon after we started, I figured we were talking km again this year. When I hit the 1, I looked at my split and realized that I was doing pretty good. Too good in fact. The time didn't quite fit. I assumed that the markers were a little off. When I hit the 2, my split was a bit slower than expected, but I was still on track for my goal race, and it confirmed my theory that the first km was short. When I hit the 3, my time was still slow and I was starting to wonder why I hadn't seen a 4km mark in the first loop. I was a bit confused but was keeping a pace that was just under throwing up. When I got to about 1/2 mile from the finish, I realized that there was no way I was going to finish in my goal time. Something just seemed off. The splits weren't adding up right.
Trying to book it into the finish line. I swear my hips aren't that big in real life. At least I hope they're not...
I crossed the finish line 25:29, a craptastically slow time for me. At least it gives me something to build off of. I was sort of hoping for a sub-24 minute time, but realistically, without a lot of recent speedwork it's probably what I deserved. I couldn't have run it any faster, that's for sure. Steve had been waiting at the finish line for over 7 minutes by the time I crossed it. I think he finished 4th overall. Great job honey! As for those crazy splits that I couldn't make sense of? Turns out they were the mile markers counting backwards! I've done my fair share of 5Ks, and I've never seen one marked like that. Live and learn I guess.
I don't know when my next 5K will be - maybe next year around this time. It's really not my favorite length. I don't have a fast twitch muscle in my body and am totally built for distance. Somehow Steve and I are a bit opposite on that spectrum I guess. It's not that I don't like the burn, and other races certainly aren't easy. I was telling Steve on the way home from the race that I didn't even feel like I'd officially "earned" my turkey for the day. Am I alone on this one?
In other news, I heard about a possible inaugural marathon here in MN in May. I'm not sure of the logistics besides the fact that it would be held in Stillwater, a town not far from me. Tempting...