It was sometime around 8pm this past Friday that I remembered that I had a race in about 12 hours. Oops! They never sent out any race emails and with everything going on, I just forgot about. I finally figured out where the race was and the start time, so the goal was to get out of the apartment by 7:30am and get there in time for bib pick up and just to relax.
Well, I was up pretty early because sleep just basically didn’t happen and that was even with the help of two sleeping pills. Needless to say, by the time morning came around and I got myself out the door, I was not expecting much out of this race. At this point, I just wanted to finish it to get race #16 out of the way.
I got to the race site about 8am and the race didn’t start until 9am, so I had plenty of time just to relax. They had the race registration tables right out in front, so it was quick and easy to get my stuff. I was a little disappointed when I was only handed a chip and t-shirt. This was my second race this year that didn’t give out bibs and in all of the races prior, that had never happened.
Since I had lots of time, I hung out in the car and then about 20m prior to the start of the race did a little warm up. I still wasn’t feeling anything about this race. Finally with about 5 minutes left to the start time, I headed over to the start line area. I swear they just picked a random spot on the road to start. Even though this was a chipped time race, there was no starting mat.
After a few announcements, the race was finally off. It had gotten hotter as we waited for the race to start, but I didn’t think it was completely unbearable. I just told myself I’d go out and run whatever I wanted to run. The course was pretty much flat and had very little turns. I think the only bunny hill was about two tenths of a mile long finishing up mile 1. What was nice is that at every mile marker they had a volunteer saying times to you.
Mile one was straight out and I definitely went too quickly. I figure I’d just push as hard as I could go. I felt mile 2 go a little bit slower, but it wasn’t until about mile 2.5 that I even saw a 10:00/mile come across my Garmin. I was able to pick it up to get down back to around 9:50.
The whole race I played cat and mouse with my friend Mickey. I actually met Mickey for the first time around mile 18 of the Pittsburgh Marathon. We played cat and mouse there too. He is a true Galloway runner and I’d run ahead on his walk breaks and then he’d pass me back on his run time. Somewhere around mile 2 I told him to just go ahead and pass me and he finally did shortly thereafter. He was shooting for a PR at this race and boy did he do that in style! It was great to see his hard work pay off and drop 44 seconds off his old PR.
I finished shortly after Mickey and was pretty shocked to see my time at 30:16. I knew I went out pretty quickly that first mile, but I didn’t think I was sustaining that and definitely didn’t think I had a 30 minute 5k in my legs. I was just under 31 minutes at the Brentwood Firecracker, but definitely haven’t been this close to sub-30 minutes since about June of last year.
The post race party wasn’t huge, but it had plenty of food. I noticed some watermelon and immediately decided to crush a slice of that. They were giving away door prizes as well and since I knew I didn’t win an award and I actually decided get back home to pack for my week long work trip. This is definitely a race I would do again and even battling July summer heat, it’s a good course to push for that PR.
Official finish time:
7/13, Females, 30-34