09 May 2012

5K Race Day Recap

After following a training program over the last 6 weeks which told me how often, how far and how fast to run, it all came down to Race Day.  My race was actually in the evening (7:30p), so I focused on drinking water, eating protein and carbohydrates and sneaking in a 15-minute afternoon nap on race day.  I ate a light dinner at 4p, and nothing after.

Following the advice of my coach (husband) about taking a warm-up run before the race, I registered my kids for the half-mile race around the track.  My warm-up was running across the field to cheer one then the other, and at times running alongside to encourage them to the finish.  I faulted, however, on his other piece of advice: to start out slow.  

Given the excitement of the race, the fact that my iPod skipped past my first pace song with my first 5 steps, and the downward grade at the start of the course, I am sure I started out too fast.  I always do.

The first two miles were great.  The course was relatively flat, there were residents cheering from their driveways, volunteers encouraging runners at turns and water stations.  It was truly a fun run.  Until I began to wonder if mile three was even marked.  Where was it??  I had to be close.  Did I already (hopefully) pass it?  Time seemed to slow down.

Only had one mishap, a shoelace came untied.  And unfortunately, it cost me the glory of reaching my goal.  I wanted to run it under 25 minutes, and I crossed the line at 25:03.  And believe me, I pushed past the rubbery thighs and burning lungs at the home stretch, kicked it in as I watched the clock ticking second by second closer to 25.  My foot didn't hit the pad until after it read 25.  

Oh well, there’s always the next race.  No matter how taxing the training seems and how exhausting the race feels, there is nothing like the rush of racing and the feeling after completing it.  Stay strong, stay committed and keep on runnin'!

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