This morning I ran in a local 5K. I have been gearing up for this race all week. I’ve cut my mileage in half to taper as well as rest my right knee. I must say that it actually felt fine the entire race. For some reason on race day my knee always knows how to get it in to gear!
On our way to the race Abi asked me if we could just run the race together. Oh man. Mommy guilt BIG TIME. We had already worked out days before that she was going to run the first part of the race with our college baby-sitter, Sarah, who is like family to us. Then I would find them (once I finished) and run the last part with her (during my cool down). But Abi just wanted to run with me. What should I do? I had planned on running this race for months, been training for it but when I looked at her I didn’t want to let her down. Was I being selfish for wanting to run it and win? Probably. Abi said she would run fast so she could stay with me. I told her she would have to sprint the whole time and that it would be hard and not as fun as it would be running with Sarah. I said it was hard for me to run that fast. I told her that very soon she would be running with me and even be running faster than me. I asked her if running with daddy would be fun and she agreed to that. Once we got to the race and Abi saw Sarah she was ok and decided to stick with the original plan. Crisis averted. I only warmed up for a mile and a half. My mind wasn’t focused and I questioned whether I did the right thing by going ahead with my racing plan.
Race had a slightly different start than earlier years. I knew the finish was the same so I had a bad feeling about what the mileage would be when I finished. With local, not certified courses, you never know… There were over 550+ runners and the start was pretty fast. Every time I looked down at my watch during the first half mile it said 5:40-something. I’ve got to slow down!!
|The start of the 5K- I’m the one in the pink!|
Mile 1- 6:11. I was shooting for 6:10-6:15 so this was really right on pace. By mile one I was first female and 6th overall. I knew I could pass a few of the guys in front of me if I just stayed with it.
Mile 2- 6:19. Too slow. This was a split I expected in a 10K- not a 5K. Just one more mile- make it count! I did pass 3 of the guys in front of me and I focused on the only two left.
Mile 3- 6:17. A little better pace-wise. I was side by side to the 2nd place runner most of this mile. He had a bit of an edge and wasn’t going to give up his lead. I made him work for it at least.
Mile 3.23- 1:18 (5:44 avg.). Yes, this was the most off 5K mileage I have ever run. Everyone’s watches were showing the mileage was off. The race was mis-measured and the course was too long. So running for an extra 45 seconds or so completely threw off my sub 20 goal.
Total time: 20:08 for 3:23 (Garmin avg. 6:14) Normally I don’t go by Garmin averages but I make exceptions when a race is not measured or certified and it is way long! I ended up being 1st female overall and 3rd overall. (This pace would have put me at a 19:22 if the course was actually 3.1 miles.) I know Garmin mileage is not 100%. Everyone runs the distance a little different but at this point I know what is “normal” distance to be off. .13 in a 5K is a BIG difference. In a full or half marathon .13 would be almost a given but not in a 3 mile race.
As soon as I crossed the line I turned around and started jogging back to find Abi. She was doing great! She had a strong kick at the end. There were a few other girls in her age group that ran but Abi ended up with 1st place for her AG. She was SO happy!!
|My little racer!!|
When we got home I asked Abi if she was ok that I raced it. She said she was and seemed happy with the way everything had gone. I’m guessing the trophy she won had a little something to do with that…
Besides the whole race distance accuracy issue, it really was a good race. I talked with the race coordinator and she said they would make the necessary distance adjustments next year. In the meantime, I am running in another 5k next Saturday that is certified and will be the correct distance.
Have you ever run a race that was mis-measured and off by a lot more than the usual “tangent difference”?
Mommy Guilt… Have you been in a situation like this?