As you probably already know, I am training for the Philadelphia Marathon in November. This week was a step back week and I had 12 miles on my plan. I planned to run on Sunday due to scheduling conflicts on Friday and Saturday.
Kim mentioned to me on Friday that she was planning to run the Quick Chick 10k and asked if I wanted to do it with her. I really wasn't planning on it at all, but spending the morning with Kim and her friend Jen did sound fun. I'd think about it.
By Saturday morning I figured, "why not" and told Kim to sign me up for the race when she went to sign up (there were no online sign ups at this late stage of the game). I don't know at what point it was, but I decided I would race this race. I wasn't going to pay $40 to run and then just go out for a jog. If I was going to pay, I was going to give it my best.
When I woke up on Sunday morning I thought up a bazillion excuses of why I should just run with Kim and her friend Jen and not race the race. I thought up every scenario from running with Kim to running at a really comfortable pace. When I actually got to the race, I still had no ideas what I was going to do.
|Myself and Kim|
|Kim and friend Jen|
When it was about 5 minutes until the race start, we started to line up. I looked at Kim and told her I still didn't know what I was going to do. I did NOT line up with her and Jen, however, so that must have meant I decided to run my own race. What would be my pace?
My friend Tracey (not THE Tracey but another Tracey) was there running the 5k and she is super speedy. She was pumped and determined to do well. I lined up not far behind her and a lot of the other 5k people. Everyone looked fast.
|Kim, Me, Tracey and Judi|
The gun went off and we were off. I promised myself not to look at my Garmin too closely and to run at a pace that was uncomfortable. I KNEW beyond a shadow of a doubt that running at a comfortable conversational pace wasn't going to get me a good time, one I could be proud of. I saw Tracey pulling further and further away, but I was keeping up with most those around me. I glanced down at my watch at the half mile mark and saw I'd been running an 8:35. Um yeah, slow down.
I knew I needed to slow down, but my body and breathing made me slow down naturally. Still, I told myself, run uncomfortable. And so I did.
Mile 1: 9:02
I was so focused after the first mile on not allowing my pace to drop dramatically. I was running and trying to run hard. At around mile 3 I got passed by about 4 people. I was so afraid my pass had dropped dramatically. That's when I spotted a girl in pink compression sleeves ahead of me. I promised myself I'd keep her in my sights and keep at the same distance away from me the whole time.
Right around mile 3 there comes a hill, I knew it was coming and I was dreading it. Again, I had many conversations with myself. I should walk. I should slow down, etc. etc. When I got to the hill, however, I tackled it and I ran it hard. Pink compression sleeves didn't gain any ground on me. Yay. At that point in the race I told myself if I finished in under 1:00 I'd allow this to be my only run for the weekend. Racing 6.2 miles = 12 miles jogging. What? That was my philopshy.
Mile 2: 9:27
Mile 3: 9:30
Just before the 4 mile mark I felt like my shoe was doing something weird. I looked down and my show was untied and my chip timer was rolling down the road. I hurry up and dove after it just as it was going under a guardrail and into the leaves. Relieved that I didn't have to climb under the guardrail, I quickly picked it up, tied my shoe and got on my merry way. Pink compression sleeves' lead had lengthened. I concentrated on running as hard and as fast as I could to get back to my normal distance behind her.
Mile 4: 9:41 (bending over and picking up chip and tying my shoes lost me what 10 seconds?)
Mile 5: 9:31
I noticed after I ran my little heart out, that I was gaining on pink compression sleeves and by mile 5 at the HUGE hill I had caught up to her. I pushed as hard as I could up that hill, but felt like I had nothing left. I felt like I was crawling. When I got to the top, I noticed something. I recovered pretty damn quickly (thank you CrossFit) and I was ready to motor down the hill. I passed pink compression sleeves. We had just 1.2 miles left. I decided to run as hard and as fast as I could.
I felt like pink compression sleeves was coming. With about .4 miles left I looked over my left shoulder and she was just hanging out there ready to pass me. I decided to find my inner competitiveness and run like I had to beat her. I decided to step it up and run just like that from that moment until the finish.
Mile 6: 9:14
There I am coming into the finish and there is pink compression sleeves behind me. Mind you she's probably a really nice person and I had nothing against her. She had after all, paced me for 5 miles of the race, but I just needed that little extra motivation and the race between us got my competitive spirit going. Thank you for pushing me PCS.
As you can see, I was really dying coming into the finish. I am NOT used to running this pace at all right now. Plus I'm a holding on to a little extra flub right now. That doesn't make for a fast runner. Regardless I had run much faster than I could have ever anticipated and made my sub 1:00 goal.
The final result.
I should add that Kim planned to run with her friend Jen for the 10k, but minutes before the race started Kim realized her friend Jen had only signed up for the 5k and not the 10k. Despite the snafu, Kim ran alone for 4.5 miles of the race and finished so happy. I love it!
Congrats to all my Quick Chicks! See you next year.