Good morning! Yesterday was the 3rd race in the Waterloo Running Series – the EndurRace 5k (The first was the ReFridgee-8er, and I missed the Pancake mile in March). This race is actually a mini series – 5k and 8k races one week apart.
So, yesterday I headed out to Elmira to run the first half. Coach Rob and I had talked a bit about the race, but to be honest, it wasn’t really part of my training plan and I couldn’t afford to take time off just for the race, so I just kind of added it in as an extra workout. I figured I’d run it as a training run, and just go by feel.
The weird thing about the EndurRace is that both races start at 6 pm – which totally throws off my type-A, routine-loving self. I decided to simulate my regular race day eating pattern as much as I could (you might remember how much I struggle with nutrition and nausea while racing). In the morning, I did a quick bike workout, then ate brunch/early lunch around 11. Then, I ate a pre-race snack at 5, and I felt good. My only niggle is that I might have started out a bit dehydrated.
I got to the race site early to pick up my packet, so once that was done I had some time to kill. Earlier this week, I read an interesting idea about how running after a mental task or while listening to music slows you down, so I decided to clear my head and rest my legs… by napping in my car ;).
30 minutes before the race start I got ready (wore my team SOAS tank and shorts – the weather was amazing!!) and headed out for a little jog, some strides, and general warming up. Once I felt good to go I ditched my arm warmers in the car and chatted with some Waterloo running friends who I usually see at races. All day I’d been thinking about paces, but I decided I’d really just go by feel.
We lined up and the clock started at 6 pm. It was a beautifully sunny afternoon, and I knew the course was pretty flat, with one long but very mild uphill and a little downhill section at the beginning of km 4-ish.
I went out fast (too fast?) and glanced at my watch at the 1k mark – 4:20. Time to pull it back a little bit… like I said, I needed to be fresh enough after the race to continue with the regular training plan. I held a steady 7:35/mile pace for the rest of the race, and came around the final corner with lots of energy left for a little kick. The pace for the last 0.1 miles was 6:40 :). I’m really happy that even though I’ve been doing lots of longer distance training (and it’s been a long time since I ran a 5k!!), I could still hang in to this typically fast event.
My final chip time was 23:03, which I’m very happy with – I think it’s actually a race PB (I may have run faster in training, according to Strava?). It was good for 1st in my age group (a brand new one, at that!) and 6th woman overall. Knowing that I had more speed in me makes me confident that I have lots of great racing ahead.
Can’t wait for next weekend! The next race in the series (8k) on Saturday and the Waterloo Half Marathon on Sunday are both on deck. For now – recovery run Sunday! See ya in 9 miles.