As we took off at the race start I was feeling really strong. My last few races I didn't look at my pace during the miles, just looked at my mile splits when my watch beeped. That had been working out great. I was running paces I otherwise wouldn't have thought I was capable of. So I went with that race tactic again. I was running with Jeremy for the first mile which made me a bit nervous but I know he tends to go out slower and pick up the pace in the last 2 miles so I figured he was just taking it a bit easy the first mile. When my watch beeped and I saw I had run the first mile in 6:19 I knew it really had been too fast. I was bummed it had been that fast because it felt great. I knew 6:27 pace was a 20:00 minute 5k from when I was working to break 20 during my freshman year in college. I knew I was in great shape and was ready to bust out a faster time, but I also knew a sub-20 was not in me quite yet. I told myself to hold it together the 2nd mile.
I was shocked with how fast my first mile was that I wasn't getting passed by other runners as I slowed down. I was still maintaining my position and even passing more runners. When we hit the turn around point of the out and back course I had worked my way up to 4th female. The girl in 3rd wasn't very far ahead of me and I made it my goal to catch her. I went through mile 2 in 6:45. Although I had slowed down considerably from my first mile I was still within my original pace range which was 6:45 or under. As I started the 3rd mile I could feel it in my legs that I had run my first mile too fast. They were tired and heavy and each hill we ran up became increasingly more difficult. I caught up to and passed the girl in front of me with about half a mile to go and from then on out focused on staying ahead of her. My goal was to not let anyone pass me. I pushed hard and kept telling myself not to give up. Mile 3 was 6:41 which was only one second slower than my last mile during my previous PR so I was pleased with that. I pushed as hard as I could toward the finish line. When I first turned the corner toward the finish I could see the clock said 20:30. As I was crossing I knew I had been just under 21 minutes. With my splits I knew I should have been well under my previous postpartum best of 20:56 but my official finishing time was exactly 20:56 oddly enough. When I checked my Garmin I saw the course had been a bit long at 3.19.
My Garmin told me I had a new 5k record of 20:26. I was pretty pumped that on a long course I still equaled my previously fastest time and that I ran the equivalent of a 20:26 5k, although I won't count it as my new PR since it wasn't an official time. I'll be gunning for a time like that at our next race, the Race Into the New Year. I was pleased with my time and how well I held it together after a too fast first mile and that I didn't give up or allow myself to be mentally defeated during the race. I am a little disappointed that the race was long so I don't have the satisfaction of having run a new PR. It feels a bit like a sham that I ran a 20:26 since it isn't an official time. But that just means I need to make it an official time in my next race! My time of 20:56 for 3.19 miles put me at an average pace of 6:34 per mile. My goal at our next race will be to run more consistent miles and hit them around 6:35 or under. I finished 3rd out of 330 total women which I felt very good about. I also came in 18th overall out of 565 total runners. That put me 1st out of 45 in my age group.
|Carter and Elise ready for the fun run.|
|Me running in the fun run with Carter and Bobbie.|