Maple Shade Soccer Club 5kish (19:36)

After racing a 5k on Saturday, I decided to run on Sunday too.  I had run the race last year, and it went to a great cause.  Since I ran last year, I knew the course was long.  It wasn’t a matter of Garmin “telling me so”, it was a matter of the course being 3X1 mile loops and then a loop on the track.  (which made for about 3.25-3.3).  If I was that upset about it, I wouldn’t have run the race.  Honestly, I would rather run a longer race than short.

5k shot

The race started at 9 am, and I got there at 8.  My stomach has felt off lately, and I can’t pinpoint what it is.  When I warmed up, I didn’t feel great but not awful either.  After all, I had raced the day before too.  My stomach felt off and “sloshy”.  I got to the start line at 8:58 and didn’t feel too ready.

In typical local 5k fashion, a young student yelled, “don’t start yet, I’m tying my shoe” and we waited for a minute.  Then abruptly like last year, we were off.  During the first mile, I found myself as fourth person overall.  I could see the high schoolers in front me and it kept me motivated.  We rounded the first loop and I hit the first mile in 5:53.  I was shocked and excited.  I didn’t feel “amazing” while racing.  My stomach wasn’t bothering me like in warmup but I didn’t feel great either.

During the second mile, I focused on the two boys immediately close to me.  I knew the winner was way out of my sights, but I thought I could stay focused enough to pass the other two.  Last year, the roads were under construction, and there were a lot of potholes.  This year it was a smooth and perfect road.  I passed the first boy around the second mile and ran a 6:03.

After that, my only goal was “not to fade too much”.  I passed the second place male during mile 3 as well.

There was a volunteer who was patrolling the course in a golf cart who stopped short in front of me.  I nearly ran right into him and stopped short. I told myself during the third mile; I would be happy with anything under 6:30 but surprised myself was another 6:03.

As we rounded the third mile, I couldn’t remember how to get to the track.  There was no volunteer, and the course wasn’t marked.  I tried to remember (in about 1 second) what we did last year and went with it.  I figured they would yell at me if I was wrong.  Since you have to go on the grass field to get to the track finish, I blazed my own path.

I got on the track and was going to the correct direction towards the finish so I figured I was okay.  I crossed the end in 19:36 and ran around 3.26 miles.

Thoughts:

To be honest, I didn’t expect to feel that good, especially after racing a 5k the day before.  I’m extremely pleased with my results and have no complaints.  Garmin tells me I crossed the “exact” 5k mark at 18:35 and averaged 6:01 pace, but you race the course you’re given.  It’s my fastest paced 5k since (by a lot!) before my injury so I can’t complain!  Last year I ran a 20:51 and this year a 19:36.  Granted last year I was recovering from a late weekend, 30 seconds per mile is a lot.

Questions for you:

Have you ever dealt with stomach problems during a race?

When was the last time you surprised yourself?