I spent all day Friday filling boxes full of everything in sight in preparation for our move on Saturday. This was after logging 2 hours on the bike and 25 minutes in the pool Friday morning. I was worn out by the time my head hit the pillow Friday night around 11:00pm. I normally love waking up on race morning, but the 6:00am alarm was not something I was excited about!
Due to my urgency to get to sleep Friday night, I didn't lay out my clothes that I planned to race in. So I was using my cell phone light (so that I didn't wake Jessica up) to try and find my Under Armour long sleeve shirt and my black shorts. Finally found the black shorts in the dirty clothes...they didn't smell too bad, so I put them on anyway. Put some peanut butter on half a beagle (this was the only food that had not been put into boxes...and it was done on purpose) and headed out the door.
I parked a few blocks away and got down to Slugger Field around 7:15am. I walked inside the stadium to tape up my knee, then it was out on the road for a few minutes to get loose. I jogged a few blocks and then did some dynamic stretching. I'm shocked by the amount of people who will stand out in the cold and try to do static stretching (bent over toe touch, pulling your heal up to your butt, etc.) before a race. Stretching a cold muscle is a horrible idea...don't do it!
I moved up towards the starting line about 10 minutes before the start of the race. I jumped around and tried to stay warm. I love running in the cold, but I don't normally have to stand there waiting to run! I positioned myself about 20 feet from the starting line.
National Anthem was sung and then the race started. Despite being so close to the front, I still found myself passing slower runners for the first 1/4 mile or so. This really frustrates me. People know approximately how fast they will run the race. If it will take you 25-30 minutes, WHY are you lining up next to people that will do it in half that time? Seriously, you know who you are.
My legs felt heavy from the beginning. I thought they were just tight from standing there waiting for the race to start. I got to the 1 mile mark in 6:49, right where I wanted to be. I thought that I was running faster than this, but it's hard to tell.
The second mile contains the only hill of the course, and I passed a decent amount of people. I guess all of that hill training is paying off. Time at the 2 mile mark was 13:57 (7:08 minutes for mile 2). My pace had slowed considerably, but this was due to the hill. I don't know anyone that can hold the same pace on a hill as they do on a flat...especially in a 5K sprint.
I knew that to meet my goal time of 21:45, I need to push it the last mile. The legs were still heavy and I knew at this point that I wasn't going to get into a comfortable rhythm, so I just pushed through. The last mile seemed to take forever. I wasn't that familiar with the course and I thought that each turn would be the last and that I would see the finish line...there were a lot more turns that I thought!
I ran the last 1.1 miles in 7:26 (6:45 minute/mile pace) to finish in 21:23. I never once looked at my watch after the 2 mile mark. I was running as fast as I could and looking at my time wasn't going to make me run any faster! The last 100 yards or so were an all-out effort (I can't image what my heart rate was)! Sprinting to the finish is fun and I had enough kick left to pass a few guys in the last few yards.
I grabbed a PowerAde and a banana in the finish shoot and walked straight to the car, then straight to U-Haul to pick up the rental!
I finished 60th out of 522 in my age group (30-34). 304th out of 3611 men, and 348th out of 8518 overall finishers. So if you do that math, 44 women beat me...is that good or bad? Hopefully none of them were over 70 (that happened to me in a half-marathon once).
2 hours on the bike folllowed by 20 minutes of weights (legs) and stretching
Avg HR = 135 bpm
Seemed like my HR was higher than normal during the whole workout. I had to keep backing off to stay in heart rate zone 2. I have a feeling that my body is worn out from moving this weekend. We'll see if the legs fire for tomorrow's running intervals!