Saturday morning I was up bright and early because I had to head out to Strongsville to participate in my second 5K, the Cleveland Clinic’s Race for Wellness! With my first, I spent the days leading up to it feeling nervous and anxious, constantly stressing out over my pace. This time, though, I was feeling calm, cool, and collected. Almost, dare I say it, relaxed. Having already completed one, I knew this was something I could do so I went in with the attitude of just enjoying it and celebrating the fact that, hi, I was running my second 5K.
The night before I’d met up with my friend Missy at a local bar just to catch up, but because of the race I was home by 11 and went straight to bed. Woke up around 6:45, took a super quick shower, changed into my running gear, had some overnight oats in a jar for breakfast (blueberry and pumpkin, a new favorite combo), and out the door I went.
My parents were able to come to this one so it was kind of fun having my own personal cheerleading section. I needed it, too, because the course ended up being much tougher than it looked like on the map. After, my mom said that several other racers had commented on the unexpected hills at the turnaround point. Actually, it wasn’t hills so much as one hill that seemed to come out of nowhere and just kept on going and going and going up and up and up. With my experience at the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, I knew better than to attempt to run up that baby and power walked it instead.
|Thinking of using One Ordinary Mom’s idea to make a scrapbook with these|
The rest of the course was fairly flat and the weather decent, low 70s or so. Unfortunately I got caught up in the excitement of the race and started off faster than I should have, so my pacing was a bit off and after that hill I really had to dig down keep and keep pushing.
Some of the runners who had finished quickly were apparently running it again. (Weirdos.) Around the 2 1/2 mile marker I walked for about two steps and heard a voice behind me say “Keep going! You’re almost there!” and from my left passed a guy drenched in sweat and clearly on his second lap of the 3.1 miles. And I was almost there, so I picked up my pace. Looking up, I could see the 3 mile marker ahead and standing next to it was my dad, waiting for me. Another 1/10th of a mile after that was the finish line and my mom, who had already grabbed a bottle of water for me.
Personal cheerleader section equals awesomeness.
This time I knew to pay attention to the clock and in the end I finished at about 45:12, which is two and a half minutes faster than what I pulled at the zoo! It’s an average of 14 1/2 minute miles and I am very happy with that. Plus, I know I wasn’t in last place this time, although I’m not sure it would have mattered even if I was since I did so much better this time. Looking at my Runkeeper app, my first mile was a 13 minute and I slowed down with each passing mile. My next 5K is at the end of August so I’m going to spend the next month working on my pacing: starting off slower and gaining speed with each mile instead of losing it.
With the race over, my parents took me out to breakfast at Panera where I had a fruit cup and an egg and cheese on Ciabatta. Who knew a breakfast sandwich could taste so good? Seriously, that eggy cheese carby goodness was just what I needed after running 3 miles.
Of course, with any race, one of the perks of early registration is swag. This time we got tech shirt and water bottle, plus a reusable canvas bag which always comes in handy with groceries.
|Cat not included|
So my second 5K is complete, my third is a month away, and I’m already wanting to sign up for my fourth. Plus, with a growing collection of race shirts and bibs, I feel like a real runner now!
Love from the ashes,