The TransPerfect Victory Lap 5k on August 19th was not on my radar at all. After my 16-hour flight arrived at LAX around 2:30, and it took about 90 minutes to get through customs, I decided I had no interest in sitting in traffic and driving home. With no traffic, it usually takes me one hour and thirty-six minutes to get home from the LAX airport. Because it was rush hour, it would take over 3 hours. No, thank you. So I got a hotel and fell asleep. I woke up from 1-3 am but slept most of the night and ended up with about 9 hours. Considering I got about three on the airplane the night before and with a 16-hour flight, I was very much in the sleep hole.
Before the TransPerfect Victory Lap 5k:
As mentioned, I woke up around 1 am, wide awake. Dubai is 11 hours ahead of the west coast, so it made sense I was awake at noon their time. I couldn’t fall asleep, so I blogged from about 1-3 and then fell back asleep until 6. I did get about 9 hours of sleep, but when you are so far in the hole it’s not really helpful.
I got a hotel breakfast of 2 cinnamon raisin bagels with peanut butter (my regular breakfast these days). I headed to Dockweiler Beach. Whenever I spend the night near LAX, I enjoy running at Dockweiler Beach. It’s $13 for parking, but there is plenty and a running path that extends miles. I arrived at Dockweiler Beach around 7:40 am. To my surprise, I saw a finish line shoot, and after asking them what kind of event it was, I found out it was a 5k. I considered doing it as I planned to do run anyway. I signed up, did a 2.5-mile warmup, and got to the TransPerfect Victory Lap 5k start about 2 minutes before the race began. I had no goals considering an hour ago; I didn’t even know this race was happening. I realized I had done the race before, but it was earlier in the month last year (I believe August 6th).
TransPerfect Victory Lap 5k Race:
The TransPerfect Victory Lap 5k started at 8:30 am. It leaves the parking lot and heads towards the entrance of Dockweiler State Park for about half a mile. During that time, I found myself running with another dude. I began leading the race, where I stayed for most of it until he passed me around mile 2.8. We went up a short incline, turned around, and returned the opposite way for about 1.6 miles. I hit the first mile of the TransPerfect Victory Lap 5k in 6:42. My body hurt, and I was tired (as expected from a 16-hour flight).
I knew I could not hold that pace, but I decided to focus on what I could and just give it a hard effort. I don’t run well on lack of sleep, and I knew that was playing a role. For the next mile, I ran alone. I focused on counting off the miles and ran a 6:56. I was pleased I kept it under 7 minutes because it did not feel great. It was on a running path that wasn’t closed, so I found myself weaving around people, but it wasn’t too crowded.
We reached the turnaround point at mile 2.1 and headed back. I could see the second-place person was catching me, and I knew I probably wouldn’t be able to hold them off. I ran as fast as my body allowed and ran the final mile in 6:55. I was happy I could maintain a sub-7-minute pace, something I wouldn’t have been able to do a few months ago.
I crossed the TransPerfect Victory Lap 5k in 20:45 and was first woman/second overall. The course was short, around 3.03 (which after reading my recap it was last year too).
TransPerfect Victory Lap 5k Thoughts:
I’m happy with getting in a hard effort I hadn’t planned. ‘m looking forward to getting sleep and getting back in the time zone. I’m so glad I took a chance, did this race, and made a hard effort. It ended up being a lot of fun!
Questions for you:
Have you done an impromptu race?
Would you rather a course be short or long?