The run on Thursday bummed me out and I was worried that this 5K would suck too. Last year I had an amazing run on this course. I wasn’t sure if this year would be a repeat or not. I started out fast and ran as long as I could before I took a walk break after a half mile. For the entire run I focused on the mile I was running. My goal was to run each mile under 12 minutes, something I haven’t done in like 2 or 3 years. Since I’ve switch to longer distance running my mile times have suffered. I train slower so I can run longer which has hurt my short race times.
The first mile was great, mostly flat and I had to weave around people but it came in at 11:56. Yay! I wasn’t sure I could keep this up. The beginning of mile 2 is up the Plymouth Ave. Bridge…I hate this bridge. I tried to run as much of the hill as I could but I was just shot from mile 1 that I couldn’t do it fast. I got to the top of the bridge and my mile 2 pace was almost 13. I thought for sure I blew my goal for the race. I kept doing a run/walk interval but I made my running faster and longer and my walking faster and shorter. I managed to get the mile 2 time to about 12:15 with about a quarter mile to go. I was in striking distance to get it under 12 but I wasn’t very optimistic. I pushed myself to a flat out sprint (well for me a sprint) and I got mile 2 done in 11:53. Wait, what? It was faster than mile 1? How could that be? I still don’t know how I did that.
Mile 3 started and I was very winded from sprinting the last of mile 2 to get my desired time. Like in Mankato, I thought great, I’m going to have to walk it in. But I decided that wasn’t acceptable, so I continued my sprint, walk, sprint, walk and by the time I got to the Stone Arch Bridge and near the finish I had my pace right at 12 minutes. Again, I sprinted to the 3 mile marker and got a 11:55 mile. I did it! I got all three miles under 12 minutes. I was in shock. I was also very tired. I took a quick breathe, looked at my watch and realized I could get a under 37 minute 5K if I just sprint to the finish. I really don’t think I’ve ever ran as fast as I did to get to the finish line. I felt completely out of control and I’m surprised I didn’t slip on the wet surface and fall flat on my face. I got to the finish line at 36:58! I did it (my official time was 37:01…I’m not going by that!)
It was a great race couple of races for me. I’m nervous about the next race, Madison Half Marathon, in 13 days. Hopefully this fast running won’t cause me to go out too fast and then have to do a 6 mile death march to the finish…I need to slow down if I want to make to the finish in an upright position!