It’s not a secret that I’ve been injured off and on during the last year. I can’t remember the last time I finished a race where I felt confident, satisfied or 100% happy with the results. The only race in the last year (since Broad Street 2014) that has met any of my expectations would be the Icicle 10 miler in January.
I entered the lottery of Broad Street while I was still injured my with my bum butt. I had hopes I would feel better before the race but if I didn’t, I would only have wasted about 40 dollars on the race entry fee. Spoiler: I finished the race 100% injury free.
My inlaws, Tim and myself headed to the race around 6:15. My father in law and myself were running Broad Street while Tim and Greta spectated. I was grateful they just dropped us off at the start because I know as much about taking the train as I do about technology.
After getting to the start, we relaxed, stood in line for the bathroom and chatted. I didn’t warm up before the race for a couple of reasons:
- I haven’t been doing a lot of mileage that I should or need to be doing extra miles. I’m not in the fitness I was and should save my energy.
- With Broad Street, it’s really crowded and I didn’t want to try and weave through people.
I dropped my items off and headed to the start. I was in the red corral and with 40,000 people running it took a while to actually get there. After getting in the corral, they announced the race and we were off. I didn’t have much time to chat but I also didn’t see many friends.
Despite feeling tired from lack of sleep, the first mile felt pretty easy. I ran a 6:27 first mile. That’s the pace I’ve been able to run 5ks recently (and felt extremely tired). I knew I would either blow up mid-way through the race or surprise myself. I focused on running my own race and not worrying about other people. It’s hard to run your own race when there are dozens of people whizzing by you but I just remembered “you do you girl”…I don’t even remember where I heard that from.
I hit the second mile in 6:27 and I began to feel confident with the pacing. My body didn’t feel great or awful, I just felt like I was running fast. I began to feel really excited that maybe I could maintain a pace under 6:45. I haven’t been consistently training so my primary goal was to finish injury free. In my mind, the reach goal was a 6:45 pace.
During the third mile I grabbed water and ran a 6:33. It didn’t feel harder but I thought I just took the race out too quickly and was starting to slow down. Then during the fourth mile, I ran a 6:26 so I didn’t feel like I lost energy just yet.
The fifth and sixth miles were both blurs to me. When I am running consistently I begin to pick people off in the second half of a race. This was not the case for Broad Street and I began fighting to hold onto the pace. I ran both miles in 6:33.
The 7th mile was the most mentally challenging. In ten miles, it’s way too soon to consider yourself “almost there” but you are approaching that point. Mentally the seventh mile felt like it took about half of the race.
By mile 8 I began seeing friends. It’s unfortunate because that is when I felt the most tired. I didn’t feel like I was going to go into cardiac arrest but I didn’t feel good. My pace began slowing and I ran the last few miles in 6:42.
During mile 9 I was focused on finishing the race. You can see the stadium from a distance and by that point you just want to finish. The last .4 is staring almost directly at the finish line. I find that type of finish the absolute hardest…I just wanted a teleporting machine…(RnR VA Beach has a 1-2 mile stretch of staring at the finish line).
Several go getters powered by me in the last .1 but I lacked that kick. I finished in 1:05.39 and 85th woman overall. I met and surpassed all of my goals and expectations and could not be happier with the race. I haven’t felt that good during a race in a very long time. As I mentioned yesterday, I want to focus on shorter distances for a while. This race gave me a lot of confidence to begin running and training again.
I even got to see a few friends post race including Liz!
Finally, I’ve been asked a lot of why I never took my gloves off. My fingers were cold that morning and I meant to take them off. They are throwaway gloves from work so I didn’t have a mental attachment to them. I delayered and threw away a jacket but started the race with the gloves. I never felt overheated and never took them off. They worked well to wipe away a lot of snot I had (sorry if that is TMI). I debated taking them off but just did never did….I know such an anticlimactic story.
Anyways great Broad Street and onward to another (injury free) race. Hopefully it’s time to put the injuries behind me.