Saturday, January 7, 2012

Lessons Learned: 5K Race Report

Today, I ran my 5th race in 5 weeks. It was a 5K.  The best part - it was a family affair Aaron and a bunch of my cousins ran it - Meredith, Brenna, Linda, and Zach.

I placed 4th in my age group.  I PR'd by 25 seconds.  And don't hate me but I feel disappointed.  What is wrong with this picture?!?! I ran a race and had a great time with my family.  It was 63° on January 7, and I PR'd and got 4th.  Why should I be upset in the least? Hmmm...let's back up.

When I found out a few weeks ago that this race was taking place in the town next to mine and that my cousins would be running it, I could not say no.  Even better my cousin from NJ, Meredith, who also has an amazing blog, said she would come too.  So, I quickly signed up.  The plan for the race was to go out strong finish stronger.  And even better to run it with my 13 yr. old cousin, Zach.  He recently told me that had run about a 6:40 mile at school, so I took a gamble and figured he could keep about a 7:20 pace.  However, there was a part of me that worried he would not be able to handle it...he showed me, you win Zach!

Should have known that anyone who rocks this hairdo for my wedding would kill me in a race, sorry Zach.

The race was scheduled for 11 A.M.  Did I mention how much I love local races?  The race was literally down the street, meaning we left the house at 10 a.m.  Score.  At 10:45, I warmed up, rubbed Aaron's belly (my new good luck tradition, grabbed my cousin and went to the front of the line.  Only to find out, the race was delayed to 11:15.  To kill time, I re-did my race prep - went back to the bathroom, stretched some more, and lined up again.   When we lined up the second time, I was a little nervous.  We were at the front of the pack and there was some serious competition.  I was actually worried we would be trampled.

But, with 5ks there is no time to worry.  We were off in seconds. Well, my cousin was off.  Zach zoomed across the start leaving me in the dust.  I knew better, at least I thought I did, and let him go.  I would catch up.   Ultimately, by the end of the first mile I was just slightly behind Zach and feeling great.  A woman with a stop watch noted one mile yelling 7 minutes and I was ecstatic.  My breath was calm and my legs were fresh. I felt good.   As we rounded the corner to turn towards home at 1.5 I could see Zach holding his sides, I caught up to him and gave him some advice, yelling at him to breathe out deep and push in and up on the side cramp.  Then I kept going, but he would soon catch up.

Mile 2 came in at about 7:10.  I started to feel drained.  Zach was by my side again and I could tell he was tired too I.  I told him we were doing great and had just done 2 miles in 14 minutes - CRAZY.   It was around this time though that people started to pass me and I began to feel the side cramps and legs tiring.  I tried to push myself but it did not seem to be happening.   But I kept going.  At Mile 2.75 there is a nice clip of a hill. And there was Zach again.  He was huffing and puffing but holding strong. I said to him Zach we're going to finish this together LET'S GO! Apparently, he had other plans because he took off ahead of me.  I swear if this kid was actually training to run he would be finishing in sub 19 - the last time he ran a 5K was oo two years ago. Zach, I am jealous of your speed

The last part of the race was a straight shot to the finish line with a clear view at the clock.  As soon as I rounded the corner, I was all smiles. I was going to PR this race.  But I was not going to beat Zach - he finished ahead of me at 22:20 and me 22:21.

You showed me Zach!

 Needless to say, I was still overjoyed about the 25 second PR.  I also thought I gained a new race buddy, but Zach is hanging up is running shoes for his hockey skates.  One day Zach, one day.  Meanwhile you rock and can pace me any day of the week.

All smiles coming to the end

After that, I waited for my other cousins and Aaron to come down the line.  Brenna, Linda, and Meredith both did awesome.  Brenna PR'd and Meredith, did her 1st 5K outside without stopping to walk! She's getting faster by the second.

Aaron also did awesome!  He finished so so strong and I helped him finish.  For the last shot to the finish line, I joined in yelling at him to race me.  As he galloped across the finish line the announcer yelled 

Here Comes Two Crazy Bitches

Aaron looking strong, do you see me as I pulled off to the side. Don't forget to order your own shirt.

He may have not PR'd but today he learned a huge lesson - a

 PR does not always make a race a success.  

Today he finished strong and stronger than last week and that is a major win.

So after that recap, why in the world am I disappointed?  After learning that I missed third place by 2 seconds, I was bummed.  I kept thinking that I could have pushed myself harder, but I am not sure where, I honestly don't remember much of that last mile to be honest.   And it is so much easier to say this now than when I am running and about to throw up or pass out haha (not really Grandma don't worry).  So I guess I will take some lessons instead from this race:  try not to start out so fast, don't be in your head, and give it your all.  I will wipe away disappointment and celebrate a win with the family!  5k I will see you next time, there will be a next time because I am going sub-22 just you wait and see.

Celebratory Pink Berry, of course!

Are you ever disappointed in yourself  even when maybe you should not be? How do you move on? What lessons do you learn from it?

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