Today was Race Day- The Allen Eagle 5k. I've been sweating the weather for a few days because rain was in the forecast, but I got lucky... no rain. It was, however, 40 degrees with a 20mph north wind. The kids were supposed to go with me and stay with Doug, Lindsay, and George while Katy and I ran but they backed out because of the weather. They kept the kids anyway, which was very sweet. I figured a cold and windy run with other people was still far better than a treadmill run at the gym. Either way I needed to run.
I got there about 30 minutes early, in time to see the fun run participants take off. Then I started jogging at a super slow pace around the area. It kept me warm and I think it helped when the race started. I'm admittedly bad at actually doing a warm up. I figure my slow pace allows the first mile to be a warm up. I wore 2 pairs of gloves and didn't have any problems with my fingers until after the race, even though I dropped one glove (cheap $1 gloves so I didn't stop to get it) at the starting line. I thought I hit the button to start my Garmin but apparently I missed it. I checked my pace frequently to make sure I was staying right around 9 minute miles, but didn't realize the timer wasn't running until I looked for my time at the 1 mile marker. Oh well, at the least the pace part worked! The first mile was fine, but that pace really makes a difference. I started hurting in mile 2 but kept pushing. I missed the 2 mile sign, but I know this course pretty well so it wasn't a big deal. I knew I was probably at about mile 2.5 when I really wanted to walk. My pace during that last mile was frequently around 8:30, so instead of walking I'd allow myself to slow back down to 9 minute pace. I didn't feel like I could sprint when I saw the 3 mile sign, but maybe 50 yards from the finish there was a lady in front of me within passing distance. I gave it all I had and passed her just before crossing the finish line. I was so intent on passing her that I didn't even see the clock- had no idea what time I had. And as soon as I crossed the finish line I was scanning for the best place to throw up. I really thought I was going to lose it, but I managed to keep it together. Nice, huh?
I waited around a few minutes for them to post times. I got 27:56, which beat my previous 5k PR (last month) by 8.7 seconds. Awesome!!!
I just looked at the official results and not only did I get a new PR, I placed 5th in my age group! The winner in my group was 2 minutes faster than me. Judging by the times of the next age group, I'd better look for my 1st place finish in my age bracket while I'm in this group. The next bracket is stiff competition.
I don't put a lot of faith in the pace prediction calculators when I'm entering a 5k time for a race that's 5k PLUS 10 miles, but it's just another number game that I like to play. 2:08:22??? That's a nice vote of confidence so surely I can finish under 2:15.