So today was the Pumpkin Run 5k. I'm beginning to think 5k's don't like me anymore. Or maybe it's that I don't like 5k's anymore - nah, it's not either one of those. I could make excuses and say that I've been busy, I got sick, it was too hot, it was too rainy... blah blah blah.
The truth of the matter is - I've been lazy, with the attitude of "it's 'only' 3.1 miles, it'll be easy". Yeah, not so much. To run that 3.1 miles at the paces my brain wants me to be able to run requires work. Work that I have been too lazy for and have neglected to do. And without the proper training and prep work, the brain may think I can run a 5k in under 29 minutes, but in reality the body says, "um no. How 'bout 32 minutes?"
I went to bed early-ish last night so I'd have plenty of rest; I hydrated well (lots of grape powerade and Mickey D's sweet tea - maybe not the best choices, but they're my favorites); I ate a good dinner. The alarm went off this morning and I was up and out of bed and ready to run. I was trying not to pressure myself into running at a certain pace or trying to finish in a certain time, but that darn under 29 minute thing has grabbed a hold of my brain and just won't let go. I knew it was highly unlikely, but you never know, it could've been possible. But today wasn't the day.
The race started right at 8:00. Temps were somewhere in the 60's, skies cloudy - nice running weather. I started off at a nice comfortable pace (a little over 10mpm, which was too slow for under 29 goal) and I kept it up for the first 2 miles. Felt good and was having a really good run for most of those 2 miles. But somewhere towards the end of mile 2, my stomach started to hurt. It wasn't bad at first, but the farther I ran, the worse it got. My pace slowed and I started to run/walk. (Which took me down mentally - I really don't like to walk in a 5k.) Eventually I started running without walking again, and I even attempted a fast finish to try to stay under 32, but didn't quite make it.
Part of me is disappointed in my time (32:02 on my garmin, 32:05 officially) but another part of me is just happy that I had the opportunity to run and that I finished. Trying to make that second part stronger than the first, but it's difficult - I want that under 29. I want it bad. I'm confident that I'll be able to do it someday, and someday soon. I've got 4 weeks until my next 5k. I'm putting my laziness on the shelf and I'm going to work and train so I can get there and give my best honest 100% effort in the attempt.
Of course, I'll be training for my next half marathon at the same time. Can I effectively train for both the speed of the 5k and the distance of the half? Good question.... I'm sure there are some running experts out there that say it's a bad idea to try. But I'm a rule bender. And I have a feeling that I'll gain some speed as a side effect of the strength and endurance i'll be building as I train for distance. I may not make the under 29 at the next 5k, but I'm thinking (wishing? hoping? dreaming?) that I'll do it before the end of the year.
Pics of today's race, taken by the Herald Dispatch
Gallery: Pumpkin Run 5K - The Herald Dispatch
(I'm in the middle of the 9th picture in the gallery. ;-) )