a blog about running fast with style
If you’re looking for a flat fast 5k in February in Seattle (I mean who isn’t) this is your race. The top 10 women were all under 18:00 minutes.
You can run this one as a single or a couple… my date for the race was Marti (18:29) and we were second in the 80-99 year old category (Lesko and Sally won).
I had two goals for this race:
1) Don’t go out too fast.
2) Don’t drop out.
Not gonna a lie… almost blew both goals.
My workout earlier in the week didn’t give me much confidence going into the race so my plan was to go out conservatively (no faster than 6:15s). Being conservative the first mile of a 5k is a bit of stretch for me, too many years of cross-country running has left with the bad habit of going out ridiculously fast, slowing way down, and then dragging my tired self across the finish line.
Not this year. (Please.)
The gun went off and we were off. Here’s hoping I don’t do anything dumb.
I glanced down at my good friend Garmin and it said I was going 7:15 pace… hmm. Lies. 20 seconds later it 5:46. Garmin. 30 more seconds and still 5:45ish.
Remember that first goal?
I put the brakes on and let everyone and their mom pass me. I finally settled in around 6:15s. I came through the first mile right at 6:12: boom! On pace for once in my life.
I can’t say I felt good and I can’t say I felt bad. It was just hard. I tried to stay relaxed and hoped I wouldn’t crash during the second mile.
At about mile 1.5 I decided I was done with the race. My legs felt fine but I was just tired. I tired to gauge where I was around the lake (Greenlake) to figure out how far I’d have to walk/jog back. Then I told myself who drops out of a 5k? I mean another 10 minutes of pain… I can do that right? Besides I was on the opposite side of the lake from the start/finish and no one wants to jog back with a race number on.
Ugh. Just make it to the 2 mile marker.
Wait what? I didn’t slow down? This has NEVER happened in a 5k.
6 more minutes I can do that right?
Everything hurt but somehow the legs kept moving.
I don’t even know who I am anymore.
The guy running next to me asked me what our split was. Apparently he couldn’t hear how I was grasping for my last breath of life. Buddy if you can talk you best be speeding up.
I’m not sure if I ran the last .1 mile with my new bestie. I only remember the turn to the finish was a lot further away than I recalled (did I mention I’ve run like a million tempo runs around this lake).
Finally I saw the turn and then the finish line. The last .1 was sub 6 pace but it felt like I was crawling. I saw my time and couldn’t believe I was just a few seconds slower than when I ran it a few years ago (when I was actually in some sort of running shape). Even more unbelievable was the negative split.
But not gonna lie it hurt.
How did I ever like the 5k? Maybe because it’s over in less than 20 minutes.
Overall it was a fun day. There were a lot of Club Northwest friends there and a bunch of the birds…and the sun even made an appearance:
Here’s hoping I learned my 5k lesson: go out conservatively and don’t drop out.