After having run 10 marathons I decided it might be time to finally run a 5K. I had no idea how to race it and definitely learned A LOT from the experience. I hadn’t run once that week leading up to it….I was trying to rest my body from running another marathon(5 days prior). It was a VERY last minute decision to run – as in less than 12 hours before the race.
I went out at a 6:25 pace – my legs said – ARE YOU KIDDING ME RIGHT NOW?!?!?! I had to listen to them and slow the heck down – I averaged a 7:11 pace – which was a little disappointing since I had wanted to average something under 7. However this race really made me analyze my goals for races and also for 2009 – because of that I would consider it a success.
I think as runners we have layers of goals. While I didn’t run the time I wanted to – I did run my 1st 5K – I did come in 2nd in my age group and 7th overall female out of 357 with a time of 22:19 – 21st overall out of 529 participants and I also averaged the fastest pace I have ever run for any race. So really even though I didn’t meet my main goal I think I had a lot to feel proud of that day.
I also have a new found respect for those that race shorter distances fast! I was more sore after that silly 5k than I was after my 2nd marathon this year. I now think the adage “start slow – finish strong” applies to the 5k distance also – I’ll race my next 5K smarter!
So in analyzing and re-analyzing over and over this silly race – something I tend to do often – I decided that my race goals for this year are this: PR at every distance. This might seem like a lofty goal but I think I can do it! When I told everyone last year my goal was to qualify for Boston – most thought I was crazy – the fastest marathon I had ever run was a 3:59:52 at Marine Corps 2005 – I would need to PR by over 20 minutes – I ended up PR’ing by over 23 minutes. This is the power of truly believing in yourself.
But back to my goals – I think I can do this BECAUSE I have already PR’ed this year twice at the 10 mile distance, once at the 1/2 distance, and at the 5K distance – since I had never raced one – so now I just need to tackle my 8K, 10K and marathon time! Only 7 more months left to do it…wish me luck ;0)