Saturday, May 4, 2013

2013 Spring Into Summer 5K (Middletown, NJ)

This was a race I wasn't sure would happen.

After I injured my knee back in August, I did a lot of soul searching, and seriously questioned whether or not I would run in 2013.

When the e-mail for this race popped up back in December, I knew right away that it screamed "comeback." After about two months of indecisiveness, I took the plunge and signed up. I spent those two months training and wondering if I made the right decision.

This morning, I knew I did.

The day started like most race days do. 6:30 wake up, breakfast, and checking my social media platforms. About an hour later, I was off to the race site!

Once I got there, it was a lot of walking around staying loose until lineup. Like last year, they ran the one mile race before the 5K. Watching the little kids run had to be the cutest thing ever. If only I started running when I was that little...

Not too long after that, it was time to lineup for the 5K. Two months and around 40 miles of training came down to one 3.1 mile run. If nerves didn't kick in before, they sure did just before the gun went off!

Next thing I knew, it was go time! My fourth 5K was underway.

I ran with my phone, as I did while I was training. I had my playlist uploaded on there and I was using RunKeeper to track my distance as best as possible. However, unlike training, I shut off the audio cues. They drove me crazy during training runs, and I didn't need or want any more stress.

I hit the first mile in just under 11:00. Like last year, I started a little too fast and this ended up being my fastest mile. Oh well. Something to work on for future races, I guess!

The second mile was the toughest, mentally and physically. I hit this one about 30 seconds slower than my first. Still, I was pushing for the PR.

Somehow, I went even slower on the third mile. I guess the fast first mile kicked me in the ass. That one was slightly slower until the last tenth.

I BOLTED that last tenth of a mile. I wanted to finish strong, and I felt that way crossing the finish line! My first three races I felt more relief than strength, but this year, I felt so strong and amazing!

When I stopped RunKeeper just after crossing, I ended that at 35:02, but it had a distance of 3.19 miles. I then realized that it was A LOT of zig-zagging, especially for the first half mile or so. Still, considering just six weeks ago I ran that exact distance 4:38 slower than today, I was VERY happy with that. I knew that no matter what the official time said, I had beat my Red Bank time from almost a year ago. In short, REDEMPTION AT LAST!!

I got my official time about four hours later. Clock time had me at 35:45, chip time at 34:57. Two seconds short of a PR, but I was still very happy with that time. I ran with my heart, gave it my all, and believed in myself at last!

About six weeks ago, I said I was done with running. Now, I am thinking otherwise. Granted, I won't make like last year and sign up for two more races in a seven week span, but I will leave the door open. If I see an opportunity and feel up to it, I might take advantage of it. Who knows? The road is long, and I'm not done yet!

Thank you everyone for supporting me throughout these last two months! Even this morning, as I was seeing tweets/Facebook posts on my phone this morning, it meant the world to me! 

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