When I heard there was going to be a 5K this year to support the American Zagreb Junior Tamburitzans, I couldn’t wait to sign up! This the first time ever that my 2 favorite things have been combined, running and tamburitza.
In case you are new to the blog, I performed with Zagreb Juniors from when I was 4 to 18 and I would easily do it all over again. The race on Saturday was to support the performers in the group for costumes, instruments, lessons, traveling and anything else they may need.
I had been planning to run this race for months but I was a little nervous for this race since there were so many people at the race that I know!
Ryan and I did our normal 1.5 mile warm up, I saw part of the course and lost some of the nerves I had built up and was looking forward to a nice flat race. For speedwork the week of the race I did 400m repeats so I was anxious to see how they would translate to race times.
We lined up at the starting line and had a nice introduction/ribbon cutting from Channel 5’s own Paul Kiska, whose wife performed in Zagreb Juniors with me. The race started and immediately the pace felt comfortable so I decided to not look at my watch and to run by feel. At least for the first mile. However, when I got to the first mile I decided to wait a little longer before I checked my watch.
I had been passed by 1 girl at the 1st mile but could see her in reach so I wasn’t too concerned. I had no idea what pace I was running and continued to run without looking at my watch. The race wove through some streets in Eastlake but by mile 2 I could see we were already making out way back to the finish. I was dying to look at my watch and see how my time was but I kept waiting and pushing myself as hard as I could.
At one point, probably about a half mile or so from the finish, a cop slowly pulled out of a side street and I assumed he was pulling out into the race to block traffic. I started to go to the left of him to cut the tangent but he pointed for me to go around him to the right. I thought it was kind of weird but didn’t think much of it as I headed in the same direction as the lead pack.
I picked up my pace on the bike path and when I came off I could see the finish line and I kicked as hard as I could. I finally glanced at my watch and saw 19:38! I kicked even harder seeing that and thinking I could possibly go sub 20. All I could think was those 400m repeats really worked!
After I crossed the finish line, I looked down at my watch and saw 19:58, I then saw the distance and saw 2.75 miles 😦 Apparently a cop wasn’t where he was supposed to be to tell the runners to turn down another street. Which explains why the cop pulled in front of me and had me go to the right. He meant for me to go down the street to his right and I thought he meant to go around his car. I think the first 15 people or so ran the short course but it was corrected for the rest of the runners.
I ended up 2nd overall and 1st in my age group but had a great time at a local race for a good cause.