Even though I love reading race recaps from other runners, I’ve procrastinated writing my own. I’ve run two races in the past month, and have started writing the recaps numerous times, with the end result being me closing out of the screen and putting it off for another day. Today I realized the reason I’ve been putting this off is because even though I’m pleased with my performance, my finish times pale in comparison to those of some of my Salty sisters. Many of them run their easy runs at my 10k race pace!
But comparison be damned – here are my rather abbreviated (because that’s how I roll) race recaps:
Bolder Boulder – It’s been 7 years since I ran this race. In 2007 I finished in 48:30 and nabbed 9th in my AG, along with a nifty little medal to prove it. This year I had two goals – to run faster than my age (53) and to again place in the top 15 of my AG to get another medal (yes, I love them). The course has a pretty good hill around mile four, and two “Are you freaking kidding me?” short hills as you climb to the finish in Folsom Field. When I strained my hip flexor 5 weeks before the race, my sports med doc let me keep running as long as it was flat and easy. Really? I’m racing a hilly race and all I can run for a month before the race is flat and easy?!?
I toed the starting line with my two original goals still intact, but not at all confident I could achieve them. It was a sunny, cool morning in Bolder, but perfect racing conditions. The first 2 miles felt fast and easy, but by mile 3, I realized I may have gone out a bit too fast (as usual). Mile 4 included a good climb, and mile 5 was mostly downhill. I was happy and relieved to hit mile 6, but as I climbed the final hills into Folsom Field my hip flexors let me know they weren’t particularly happy with me. When I got the text message (another perk of this race) that I had finished in 51:18 I was over the moon happy. I had run faster than my age, and not nearly slow as I had feared! I learned later that day I had placed 9th in my AG again (out of 340). Mission accomplished!
Super Day 5k – This is a small, local race on a tough, hilly course. It’s been a few years since I’ve run it, mostly because it’s not my favorite race and I’ve been able to find valid excuses not to. This year, since my hubby and I are trying to keep racing expenses down, we figured it was an inexpensive way to spend a Saturday morning. You wouldn’t think a race like this would be stressful, yet I heaped a big ole helping of stress on my plate then asked for seconds. Every time I’ve run this race, I’ve won my AG. So of course, anything other than a win just wasn’t going to be acceptable.
This race has a 5 or 10k option, and you don’t have to decide which one you’re running until you’re actually running. If you want to stop after 5k, you go through the finish chute. If you decide to go for 10, run slightly to the left of the chute and keep going. My original intention was to run the 10k, but when I clocked my first mile at 7:26, and my second just slightly slower, I knew I had started too fast to run the 10k in a time I’d be satisfied with. I gave it all I had for the last mile and a half, and scooted through the finish chute in 23:58. Considering it’s been a couple years since my 5k times have had a 23 in front, and considering I thought I might puke for a minute after I stopped, I was pretty happy and knew I’d given it all I had that morning. And…wait for it…I placed 1st in my AG!
These won’t be the fastest races or paces you’ll read about here at Salty Running, but they’re mine and I’m pretty darn proud of them.
Do you ever feel like your race times don’t measure up? Do you put pressure on yourself when you race?