I raced this week! I rarely get nervous for races, but the indoor track always gives me goosebumps. The last time I raced was in November, and following my 2-week break in December I haven’t done many uptempo runs recently so I was pretty uncertain of what to expect, adding to the nerves. I entered myself with a 18:45 seed time, but my real goal was to run a smart race (meaning not go out too fast!) and get in a decent workout.
From the starting gun, I was probably in 10th place in a field of 16 collegians. A trio broke away in the opening mile, but I was happy running a bit slower. A few girls started drifting back and I passed them smoothly, going through 1600m in 6:08, just over 19:00 pace. In the second mile I started catching a few more girls, after and the initial lead back broke up I caught 3rd and 2nd place. I tried to talk them into hanging on to my pace, but the timing company’s splits show I was actually picking up some speed. My throat was starting to burn from breathing the indoor air, but I realized that my legs actually felt quite fresh!
I reached 3200m in 12:09, and found myself sitting on the shoulder of the leader. I thought I remembered seeing her destroy the last kilometer of a 5k last year, so I decided to wait. We made a few circuits of the track in 47 seconds before splitting a 48. Her coach was yelling at her to move and finally I realized she was toast and I needed to take responsibility for pushing myself.
With 850 meters to go, I accelerated. My last four splits were 40.0, 43.6, 43.1, and 39.0, giving me an 18:50 finish time. What’s really exciting is that last 2:45+ 800m is faster than I closed my 5k PR from almost two years ago — and I haven’t done any running faster than marathon pace in a couple months! I’m really excited to put in some more work now and see where it takes me in the spring.
Here’s the weekly training summary:
Monday: 8.5 miles @ 8:21 average pace on the treadmill.
Tuesday: 4.1 @ 8:39 in the morning (work meeting was canceled) and 7.5 @ 8:35 in the evening.
Wednesday: 11.3 @ 7:30 average pace. Ran 55 minutes progressing from 7:30 to 6:40 pace — treadmill of course. Noted in my online log that it “felt easy.”
Thursday: 7.6 @ 8:28 pace. Felt terrible at first. It was sort of a blessing that JB woke up and I had to re-settle him because I also took the time to grab a snack. Felt better the last four miles.
Friday: 8.5 @ 8:23 pace in the morning, 3.7 @ 8:25 in the evening.
Saturday: 2 miles warmup, 5000m indoor track race in 18:50, 2.5 miles cooldown. 3.5 @ 8:47 pace in the evening. I typically try to do an early morning shakeout before afternoon races, but I was on my own with JB so it didn’t happen.
Sunday: 13.4 @ 7:52 average outdoors. I wore my Garmin so I knew I was hitting some sub-8 miles and tried to back off the pace and failed. No idea why I was going this fast. Belly was upset mid-run but otherwise felt great and wished I’d had time for a few more miles.
total: 75.5 miles