Another year and another fabulous Quick Chick. I wasn't even signed up for this race until a few days before the event. I didn't plan on doing it because a) I had a lot of activities for the kids that day and b) I'm racing Buffalo Creek this coming Saturday and I didn't trust myself to not race this 10k. Then Tracey got a free entry and I decided I would go too. So I asked my friend Kim if she'd like me to run with her. She said yes! It turns out, my other friend Tracey also decided to register last minute. She signed up for the 5k.
|Tracey W, Kim, Tracey S, Moi|
It felt so awesome to be totally 100% relaxed on race day. I had no pressure at all. Well I did have a little teeny bit of pressure and that was to keep Kim on pace. Kim decided she wanted to run a 10:30 pace for this race. That is a quick pace for Kim and she knew setting her goal on 10:30 would be a challenge.
We texted throughout the week and she let me know she was nervous, but I believed in her and I told her I'd help her to meet her goal. My goal was to run as consistently as possible. I didn't want to start off too fast and lose her in the end. I also didn't want to be too slow and have to make up time. The good thing about this race is that it's at North Park where all of us ladies run ALL the time. I know every hill and every flat. I was confident I could keep Kim moving faster on the flats to allow time for slower uphills.
It was a beautiful morning for a run. It was sunny and brisk. Pretty much perfect. Before we knew it, we were off. The crowd started off quickly as things do. It was hard for me to gauge at first how we were doing. I'd think we were running slowly and look down and we were running a sub 10:00 pace. I think I got us pretty well under control by the quarter mile mark. We had settled into a nice pace and were just doing our thing.
I told Kim I would talk to her and she didn't even need to respond. So I told stories and said useless crap, but I was trying to keep Kim's mind semi-occupied. I don't know if it helped her hurt, but I kept talking anyway.
The first three miles were really good. I think Kim felt fairly well, she was holding up nicely and still saying a yes or no here and there to my stories. We started off slightly fast, but I think we were running a nice consistent pace with a little in the bank in case we needed it in the end.
Mile 1: 10:22
Mile 2: 10:17
Mile 3: 10:22
By mile 3, it was obvious Kim hated me. Ha! She was thirsty for water and we both needed it. I kept trying to say the right things to encourage Kim, but every time I said something it felt like the wrong thing was coming out. Maybe Kim and I should have come up with things to say ahead of time. I would tell Kim she was doing great. I'd stay just out ahead and say, "come on" or "let's go." Sometimes I think she took them as "get it going" and "move it" but I swear I didn't mean it that way AT ALL.
Mile 4: 10:43
At mile 4 we finally got some water and I felt that Kim was really starting to struggle. We were heading into the rolling hills and I told Kim we would take it easy on the uphills, but we really needed to pick it up on the flats to make our time goal. At this point we were probably sitting just under our overall goal pace.
I'm not going to lie, the hills got tough for Kim and I could see she was struggling with her breathing. I kept reminding her to take deep breaths in through her nose and out through her mouth like Kortni did for me during the marathon. It really helped me. I'm not sure if it helped Kim.
I kept telling Kim "Don't give up." I didn't think she was giving up, I just didn't want that to be an option in her brain. I told her to think about how far she had come as a runner in LESS THAN A YEAR and how proud the old Kim would be of the knew Kim. I told her the old Kim would never have believed she could run a 10K at this pace. I reminded her that the Kim just less than an hour ago didn't even believe it.
Despite my encouragement, I think Kim wanted to punch me in the face. I say that in the most loving way possible. I wanted to punch me in the face for her. I've been her many times being paced by someone and it's not an easy position to be in. You begin to hate the person pacing you for being so positive and cheerful.
Mile 5: 10:39
We made it through the rolling hills and now we were headed toward the big hill. Our average pace was over our goal at this point so I told Kim, "I don't care what you do to get up that hill, walk, crawl or whatever, but once we are to the top, you have to give it all you've got and run as fast as you can." She glared! She tackled the hill though.
|At the Bottom of the Big Hill|
She slowed and power walked and I reminded her again about her breathing. I gave her to a sign and told her she had to start running again. I could see the physical pain on Kim's face and I felt badly for her, but I still had to push her. I wanted her SO badly to meet her goal. I reminded her a couple times up that hill NOT to give up.
As we finally crested the hill and got to the real downhill, I tried to pick up pace. Kim would normally follow my lead, but she was lagging a little behind. I kept telling her if she had it to give, she had to give it. I knew she would if she could, but she was struggling. I told her that she'll know she gave it her all if she had nothing left to give at the end of the race and she really didn't have a whole lot left. I knew she was being pushed hard and I was so proud of her. She really did give it her ALL!
I gave her one last "don't give up" right around the 5.6 mile mark. She told me, "I'm not trying to give up." I knew she wasn't trying to give up. I think I should have been saying, "believe in yourself as much as I believe in you." That's what I meant. I meant, you can do it Kim and I know you can, and I want you to know you can too! Again, she wanted to throat punch me!
As we got closer and closer to the finish line, I knew we were in survival mode, and I kept imagining how bad Kim felt (I've been there) and I just prayed the minutes went by quickly for her. Soon enough, we were rounding the very last corner and Kim gave her little kick and we finished.
|Our Big Finish|
Mile 6: 10:49
Mile 6.2: 9:34 pace
Total: 1:04:54 or 10:30 pace (6.17 miles)
Official Time: 1:05:01 or 10:29 pace
BAM!!!!!! SHE DID IT! I couldn't have been more proud of Kim. She was a warrior out there on that course. She put in HARD WORK and it paid off when she met her goal. That is a wonderful feeling and one I'm glad I got to be a part of.
I know Kim didn't believe she could do it that morning, but I knew all along she could. I knew she'd push through the pain and make it to her goal. I wish I could explain to you the sheer joy I felt for her. I hope the feeling of accomplishment and pride she felt stays with her for a VERY long time! I think you're amazing Kim!
Oh and how about these amazing ladies? The Traceys. Tracey S. set a 10k PR and came in second in her age group. Tracey W. came in 1st in her age group and was the 4th overall female. AH-MAZ-ING!