About 2 weeks post Ironman I had my eyes set on a 5K 1 week away, the Dead Sprint 5K. However, when some friends told me about the Great Pumpkin 5K, I decided very last minute that I would run it. Just for fun and to see where I was at in the 5K distance. I didn’t run as many this year as normal and I missed out on the shorter races due to ironman training so this was my chance to see where I was at.
I even enlisted the help of my all time favorite pacer, Ryan, to make sure that I ran the race and didn’t go out too fast…or give up and go too slow.
I’d say the weather was perfect but I think it was just a tad bit cold for me at the time. The race is close to the lake as well so wind is always a factor but I told my game plan to my pacer and we had a plan.
The plan was to run even 7:20 per mile, which isn’t crazy fast and I thought after ironman training it would be a nice goal to start out with. I am not sure what happened but we didn’t nail the first mile, didn’t crush it either if that was what you were thinking. My watch said it was around a 7:40 pace and all I could think was “this is really hard and I am nowhere near my goal pace, I must be really out of shape”
Apparently, my mile time was faster than a 7:20 but the time I saw on my watch was the actual pace at that time. You would think I would have known that. My second mile is usually pretty slow but I let Ryan do the talking and encouraging and we nailed the second mile! I didn’t know it at the time though, I had decided to ignore my watch and trust my pacer.
The last mile, I totally wanted to give up and drop down to a 8+ minute mile. I just kept thinking “when did a 5K get so hard.” Ryan pushed me to catch the next couple people in front of me, I thought he was just trying to give me a goal to keep me pushing. I didn’t actually think we would catch them! However, we slowly picked off the runners and I was pretty sure I was going to puke if we went any faster.
With less than half a mile to go, I knew I had my goal time in the bag, just had to get there without puking. I rounded the last corner and could see the clock and I knew I had it. I sprinted to the finish and as soon as I got through the chute I was hunched over dry heaving in the grass. Sexy, I know.
First 5K back in months and no not a PR but a 22:35, a 7:16 pace and 2nd in my age group!