Turkey Bowl 5k #3
Once upon a time I fantasized about trying to run fast enough to win the race. I dropped that fantasy but ended up making a game day decision to run as fast as I could and go for an age group win. Spoiler alert. Mission accomplished. In fact, if I had been training for short speed, it would have been a stretch but I might have been able to shave another minute off my PR and snag that win. As it is, I’ll take my $25.
Before I get too far ahead of myself…
I decided to go for it. Instead of putting an unreasonable time goal on myself I made the goal of trying to go sub 24 and/or running fast without bonking. During my warm up on the track I started to get excited. It’s been a while since I’ve run fast.
With very little time to wait, we were off. I started near the front and managed to avoid the crowd. However, for the second week in a row, I forgot to start my music just before the race started. I ended up starting it on the run. When it started playing I had to laugh. The headphones weren’t plugged all the way in so Macklemore started playing nice and loud. (Did I mention that this race is held at my super-conservative alma mater?)
I got the headphones plugged all the way in and tried to settle in. My only goal was to aim for sub 8 minute miles even if that sub 8 was 7:50. 🙂
The first mile went by really quickly and I felt great. Mile 1 split: 7:31
With each step I kept pushing and trying to, reasonably, pick off as many people as I could.
When we made the turn by the print shop and head to “way back” campus, I kept plugging away even though this section included the most difficult hills of the course. My pace slowed a little but I did not look down at the Garmin. I focused on keeping my effort even regardless of what that meant for the pace. What goes up must come down. Right?
Sure enough we got the down hill and started into mile 3. Mile 2 split: 7:38 (That really surprised me)
At about 2.25 I started to feel a little nauseated. I didn’t feel like I was pushing too hard but since I wasn’t gunning for a PR I gave myself the okay to back off a little bit. I’d rather not hurl.
Thankfully that sensation passed quickly. That feeling was replaced with surprise that I was already so close to the finish. Usually in a 5k those three miles feel like they would take forever but this was honestly the fastest a 5k has ever passed for me.
We got onto the field and I tried to push just a little harder. It wasn’t easy. Running on the grass is not easy. Soon I was on the track and almost done. A quick glance at my Garmin showed me that I could, if I put on a little sprint, get my second fastest 5k time ever. Even though I was still running, I could not believe it.
Just like that I was done. Mile 3 split: 7:14 (My Garmin registered 3.01 but I’ll go with the certified course distance of 3.10.)
Unofficial time? 22:26. That’s right. My second fastest 5k time, ever. I still can’t believe that I did that. I didn’t even really try to push the pace on this run. Yes, I ran fast but not fast for a 5k. Plus, I haven’t done “real” speedwork for months.
I am on cloud 9.
Mom also did fantastically well. She clocked a 24:35 which was good enough not only to win her age group but every other age group except for mine (25-29) and the 19-24 group.
I think I might try to do this race more often. It’s not often that I have the chance to win a cash prize.