Saturday, March 3, 2012

Anthem 5K - Race Recap

After the storms moved through last night, the temperature dropped considerably, but otherwise the weather was perfect for a race.  It was 35 and mostly-clear skies (although the sun wasn't up yet) when we left the house this morning around 6:45am.  The wind made the temperature feel quite a bit colder, though, at 10-15mph.

We had a little trouble finding parking since the lot we thought we could park in for free was charging $5, but we ended up parking in the main lot at the stadium instead.  And after meeting up with Jennifer's Team in Training group for a pre-race meeting, we were headed to the starting line.

It seemed like more people registered this year than in past years, but according to the number of finishers it was about the same.  Close to 9,000 people registered, with 8,494 finishers!

We only had to wait about 10 or 15 minutes for the race to start, but it was definitely cold, windy, and to make matters worse, we were in the shade.  :(  Yeah, I'm definitely a baby when it comes to racing in the cold.  But look at this trooper (who later complained of being hot)!  I think she was meditating...

She seems happier with Kristen, doesn't she??

I don't know if I was putting too much pressure on myself for this race or what, but I was quite nervous last night and this morning.  I think I was just worried about not meeting my goal, which would have been a major disappointment since I'm actually sticking with my training plan this year.

We were about 4 minutes behind the clock by the time we were able to cross the start line.  Between being cold, my nerves, and the tons of people, it was kind of a rough start for me.  Sure, I started off at a good pace (Jennifer later commented she just saw me take off and then I was gone), but my legs and feet almost felt numb, and they seemed to be very heavy.  It's like I was working really hard to propel myself forward.

Luckily, that feeling went away after the first mile or so, and from that point on things felt normal again.  I was definitely pushing myself pretty hard, but I was still surprised to look down and see 7-something minute miles on my watch (this was my first race using a Garmin, and I loved being able to pace myself with it!  Such a great tool to have!).

The second mile wasn't bad physically, but it was the hilliest part of the course, and people were slowing down because everyone was crowding the insides of the turns, so I lost a little of my momentum (although it was probably a good thing).

Things flattened and straightened back out for the last mile, and it seemed like I was able to get back into my groove.  Everyone around me seemed to be going about the same pace, too, which helped.  Just look at how my pace smoothed out:

For the last half-mile or so, I felt like I was about to puke or pass out or something.  I didn't feel sick, and I didn't really feel tired, but something didn't feel right.  Since I don't tolerate the cold very well (especially breathing it in), I put on my balaklava in the middle of the race.  That was helping, but toward the end of the race I almost felt like I wasn't getting enough oxygen, so I kept taking it off and putting it on.

I'm not sure how, but I was able to speed up for the last 1/4 mile and finish strong.  And I ended up beating my previous PR time by a full minute-and-a-half!  My time was 24:14, which gives me an average pace of 7:46/mile.  I'm sooo excited!!

Jennifer beat her time by over a minute, too!  I'm really proud of you baby!

As we were leaving, the scene was drastically different from the stormy pictures I took yesterday...

(This one almost looks like a sunset, but that's just my camera phone freaking out because I tried to take a picture of the sun.)

The first road race for 2012 is officially in the books.  Next up is the Rodes City Run 10K two weeks from today!

1 comment:

  1. We rocked that shit today! Your time was amazing. So proud of you!


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