I figured with the St. Jude Half Marathon coming up in less than 3 months, I had better do a couple of races this fall to get into the groove. This morning, I participated in a 5K to benefit our town's Special Olympics.
I was so nervous! I haven't run a race in four years, and I was so jittery beforehand. I am NOT a morning runner, nor do I run well in heat/bright sunshine. This morning's race included all of those things. Yikes!
Beforehand, feeling jittery but rather cocky and confident. I was put in my place very quickly!
I started off pretty fast, with my first mile time clocking in at 9:16. I am so convinced that running is like 75% mental and 25% physical. I wish I could just turn my brain OFF when I run. I try hard to get lost in thought about projects or something else I love, instead of yearning for the miles to go by faster or thinking about how hot and dizzy and tired I am feeling. I started to focus on how many people were passing me and how slow I seemed to be compared to them, and I slowed down even more. Then the couple taking turns pushing a disabled boy (actually he was probably closer to teen-age, so he must have been pretty heavy) in a stroller passed me and my ego deflated completely. Then, at about mile 1.5, a huge hill loomed ahead of me. I pushed up the hill and turned the corner at the top. The stretch ahead looked pretty flat, so I just kept going, even though I so badly wanted to stop. The last half mile or so was almost completely downhill, which I was so grateful for. Ahhh.
I loved seeing Ryan and the kids waiting for me at the finish line. I slowed down for the last 20 yards or so, so Brynlee could run with me. She LOVED being able to run in the race and cross the finish line! I gotta say, it was adorable.
I finished at 32:09, with a 10:21 mile pace. I wanted to top at around 30:00, but keeping in mind all the factors that were against me, I'm okay with my time. I did finish 4th in my age group, but there were (ahem) only six women in my age group, so I'm not sure how proud of that ranking I should be. Haha.
Sweaty, tired, and so glad to be finished and holding my babies again. And that is Brynlee's "cheese" face, lovely.
I'm hoping to do a few more races before the big one. It really does feel amazing to cross the finish line, even after a measly 3 miles. A few of my Finding My Feet team members ran a 10K last weekend (you HAVE to read Keight's post... hilarious and so touching!) and I can't even imagine racing double what I ran this morning. Plus I have 6.5 to pound out tomorrow to keep up with our training regimen. At least it helps me not feel so guilty about the huge Chipotle burrito I had for dinner tonight or the yummy Trader Joe's coffee ice cream I just finished off. :)