Last night my husband, son, and I participated in the Spring into Summer 5k sponsored by a local YMCA. Preliminary weather reports called for rain and/or scattered thunder storms right around race time. I had one of my computer windows dedicated to weather.com's hour-by-hour update so I could track the progress of the potential storm. As the hours passed, it seems that the storm fizzled out or took a different track. The skies were overcast and the air was somewhat humid.
We arrived at the race location, picked up our registration packets, pinned on our bibs, and walked our daughter over to the child care area. Once she was checked-in, we made our way back to the parking lot. My left foot was giving me a little trouble, so my son walked the length of the driveway & back with me while hubby talked with a friend from his office. At 6:20, we started the walk down to the start point and I told them that my goal was to finish in under 40 minutes. After a few announcements and the singing of the National Anthem, we were off!
Hubby and I ran together for the first 1/4 mile. This was the first race I've run where I was actually in with a pack of runners and doing a decent job keeping up with everyone. Yeah, I was still getting passed on occasion. Yeah, my hubby pulled away and I slowed to a more reasonable pace for me. But, it was the longest I've been able to stay with a cluster of people and not be the last "runner" 5-10 minutes behind the other runners separating the pack of racewalkers.
I wore my stopwatch just in case they didn't have people calling out split times at the mile points. I could still see my hubby just a bit ahead of me and was convinced he was on pace for a sub-30 min finish. I came past the 1 mile checkpoint and they called out 10:26. I was totally surprised. I don't train at that fast of a pace and had no idea I was holding up at that speed. It didn't last long, though, because I took an internal survey of how I felt and decided to drop my pace a bit. At the second mile checkpoint, they called out 23:08 as I came past. At this point, we began a 1/2 mile trail run and I started to run a bit more cautiously. We came back out and had a couple of inclines through streets and the high school parking lot. While on one side of a curve, I caught a glimpse of my hubby on the other side of the curve and I could see that he was walking. I started getting a bad feeling about either his breathing or his leg. I finally finished winding my way through the parking lot and onto the track. As I came around the bend, I saw the time clock change to 36:00. I kept a steady pace and then it was 37:00. I really didn't feel like I had much kick in me and I had four people around me, so I didn't have much room to navigate at that point. I was close enough that I thought I could get in at 37:30. However, I crossed the line at 37:35 (chip time)!
Average pace 12:06/mile
369 out of 454 participants
170 out of 238 females
53 out of 67 females 30-39
The realization of just how far I've come with my running: Two years ago, my husband, son, and I took part in the 2-mile walk associated with this event. That was our spring board into starting the C25K program and the beginning of running in several 5k's since. Last year we ran the 5k instead of doing the walk. I was the absolute last runner to cross the line with a finish time of 47:41. I was stunned to find out that I've managed to take 10:06 off my finish time on the same course I ran last year!
It turns out hubby needed to walk for a bit because his calf started bothering him again. Hopefully he'll be recovered well enough to continue with our 5-mile training. We have a long-run of 4.5 miles on either Sat or Sun this weekend. I'd really rather not run it without him, but I suppose I will if I have to. I could also just do another 5k run and we can change our long-run day to Tuesday instead to give him some extra recovery time.