Wow. Here is a race report I’ve been wanting to write for a LONG time!! A PR in a 5K?! Me?? That isn’t something I thought I would ever do again. I’ve actually raced this distance more than any other race combined and for years I was content with that little 18:36 PR I set in college. I assumed that the thin, college age, single, no kids version of myself would always be faster than the married, mother of four runner I am today.
|5K in college @ age 21 (Fall, 2000)|
|5K @ age 34 (May, 2013)|
My life has changed in so many ways since my college running days of 2000. At the time I thought I was so busy with school, my friends and running. Busy?!! My definition of busy has also changed over the years. Right now busy is trying to “squeeze in” tempos and long runs before carting kids to and from school, running errands, making meals, doing laundry, cleaning the house, all the while caring for small children. But that’s my life and I wouldn’t change a thing. (Except for maybe the endless laundry pile …) I am very thankful for the people God has put in my life who have taught me so much about love.
So back to the 5K…. I tried to go through my blog/ race history and a conservative guesstimate of how many 5K’s I’ve run since college is around 35. It has always been my go-to race. Even during the years I was “on a break” from competitive running I would at least jog the Race for the Cure 5K in Little Rock every October. I cannot say I have necessarily been trying to PR these past 13 years either. For many of the years I was jogging them pregnant or a few months post baby. In recent years I’ve run them during my marathon training. It’s really only been in the last 9 months that I’ve even considered it possible to PR and I knew it would take a lot of work.
The PortFest 5K has been on my radar all year. I ran in it last year and though it was humid and hot I loved the flat fast course. This year Abi wanted to run in it too so I registered us both.
Since we were leaving early Saturday morning I made sure all the kids were dressed in what they would be wearing Saturday when they went to bed Friday night. This way we could just pick them up and load them in the van. With four kids it’s just easier this way. I had all the shoes in a bag as well as breakfast and drinks ready to go. It is about a 50 minute car ride to Newport and from where we live it is a very easy drive.
We got to the race around 7:20 and Abi and I picked up our bibs and chips and used the restrooms. Then I warmed up (1.5 miles) while John got the kids situated. Right before 8 it was time to line up. I was very thankful it was not as humid as it was last year. Temps on Saturday were in the low 60’s and it was only 85% humidity. Very doable for a 5K!
Immediately at the start I felt myself fall in right behind the lead pack of guys. I tried to focus on hitting the pace I wanted- low 5:50’s.
Mile 1- 5:51. Right on pace. I just needed to try to stay in the 5:50’s for mile 2.
Mile 2- 6:02. A few seconds slower than I wanted. Immediately I started doing the math in my head and I knew I had to stay focused if I was going to try to PR. If I slowed down it was not going to happen.
|Photos are courtesy of #11’s wife 🙂|
Mile 3- 6:03. This was a hard mile. The guy I had just passed was right behind me and it was an all out sprint to the finish between us. (His wife took the pictures of us above.) We have run in races in the past and half the time he has finished ahead of me- you just never know!
Mile 3.04- 5:29 avg. My Garmin only measured this course at 3.04. Race officials said it was measured and certified so I’m not sure what was the deal there. One runner said that there are areas that are easy to trim the mileage on corners of this course. Even with an added .06 which might add another 20 seconds I would have still PR’d so I’m just going with it. My pace was actually very similar (or faster) for the 5K I did in February but in that case I couldn’t count it as a PR because the course was not certified and measured at 3.27- way long for a 5K!
Official finish time: 18:08/ 1st female. Results can be found here.
As soon as I got a drink of water I started to run back towards Abi. I found her right after the two mile marker. She had slowed down a little but I knew she could PR if she kept with it. She worked hard and finished with a 15 second PR.
|Abi’s kick at the end|
Abi finished in 28:43 and was so happy. I ran a little more to cool down with the overall winner and the 2nd place female. Both are from Poland but currently living in the states. They ran for Harding as well (a few years after me) and it is always fun to connect with HU Cross Country and Track alumni.
Now for a few other pics from the race (in no particular order)….
|SO proud of my big girl.|
|Kopec (male winner) and I with our plaques and $100 prize money|
|This one cracks me up! J took this one of Ashton while I was running.|
|LOVE this one of J and Anna!! Another pic he took while I was running.|
All in all a great race morning. It really was the perfect time and race to break my old college record and I’m especially happy that John and the kids could be there when I did. I am thankful for the progress I’ve made in this distance. I know I still have a long way to go- especially if I want to see a 17:something someday. I’m just going to keep working hard and hopefully my next 5K PR will not be in another 13 years!