On Saturday I ran the Haddonfield Adrenaline Run 5k. The Haddonfield Adrenaline 5k Run is one of the most competitive 5ks in the greater Philadelphia/New Jersey area. It sells out every year and the typically the first 150 finishers all run under 20 minutes. This year I ran 19:26 and was around 130th place.
I’m biased by RunningCo. of Haddonfield always does a great job putting the race together and it’s always a lot of fun. Anyway, after an exhausting and busy week, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I knew I wouldn’t be running 18:29 like last year, but I was hoping to be faster than the last 5k I ran.
I warmed up a few miles and got to the start line around 10 minutes early. Since I knew quite a few people there, (I would think about 1/3rd of all race participants), I talked and caught up with several people. Before I knew it, we were off. The Haddonfield Adrenaline 5k Race starts in front of Haddonfield High School.
The start of the Adrenaline Run 5k is jam-packed. Since I knew I would be nowhere near the front, I didn’t line up in the front. As we began running, I realized around .5 I had forgotten to start my watch. In a 5k, I thought it seemed silly to start it then, so I just didn’t. I’ve run races without GPS before, and while it’s nice to know your splits, your legs still move without a watch. I could have run 22 minutes or 18 minutes, and I would have had no clue.
The first mile was crowded and it was hard to get any rhythm. It was one of the windier days, and so we were running into a headwind down Kings Highway. I saw my co-workers and friends in front of the store, which is always motivating.
We rounded the corner near Saxbys Coffee Shop and went straight into the neighborhoods. It’s a long flat, windy stretch. If it wasn’t windy, it’s easy to build speed there. This is typically the fastest spot of the Adrenaline Run 5k.
Just after mile 1, we turned the corner, went down a small downhill, and hit the water stop. It was nice not to be in the wind anymore. We went up a few inclines. My husband, who hasn’t been running much, passed me around mile 2. I was happy for him and just focused on the last mile.
The last mile went straight back Kings Highway and headed towards the finish. The finish of the Haddonfield Adrenaline Run is flat and fast, and this year with the tailwind it was even faster. (A perk of the headwind going out). If I were to guess, my bet is my last mile was somewhere around 6:0X because of the tailwind. With the long stretch, you can see the finish line for over a half-mile away. That’s always challenging.
I saw the clock go over 19 and I knew somewhere where I was speed-wise. I had no clue until that point. I powered as much as I could and crossed in 19:26. I’m happy with my effort for where I am fitness-wise. It’s always tough not to compare yourself to a faster year, but it’s my fastest 5k in several months so I can’t complain about that. If you are ever looking for a flat, fast, competitive 5k, the Haddonfield Adrenaline Run 5k is a great local race.
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Questions for you:
What is your favorite 5k?
Have you ever raced without a watch? I’ve done many. At my first marathon, NYCM, my watch stopped working at the start (and it never worked again).