Literally. This morning was the local 5K. When I say local, I mean local. So local that I jogged from my house to the start line as my warmup. When I got there, I saw a few people from my church who had also signed up for it. And since this was a small race, I was hoping that I had at least a small chance of maybe placing in my age group. And I missed it by THAT much! So frustrating.
The thing that I think is interesting is that people think that because I run marathons that I am automatically a fast runner. That is not true. I can run for long distances, but I've really had to work over the past couple of years to get faster. And I have, but I'm still not where I want to be. We have a large running community in the area I live, so if I ever hope to place in my age group in a big race here, I need to be running 6 or 7 minute miles. The fastest I can crank out is an 8 minute mile and I can only hold that for 2 or 3 miles.
The race started at 8:00. I got close to the front of the coral so that when the gun went off, I wouldn't have to weave around people. I didn't want to waste any extra energy you know. The course went through the neighborhood that is in front of my own neighborhood. It's also a place where I do some of my mid-week runs. It wasn't too bad, but there are a few hills thrown in there.
I wasn't sure how I was going to do this morning since the cough has lingered, but it seemed to stay away and for that I was grateful. I hit the first mile in 8:18, so I knew I had a chance at coming close to or beating my personal record (PR) of 26:10. It IS a small town, so the mile 2 marker never appeared. I hit mile 3 at 25:38. Not much time let for that last .1 mile. I crossed the finish line at 26:29.
After having looked at last year's results, I knew it was going to be close as to whether I would place or not. (That's the joy of small town races - not many people, and the really fast ones are usually somewhere doing a bigger race). It turns out, I ended up in 4th place in my age group. And I missed it by 28 seconds. 28 seconds!!! That's it. If I could have run 10 seconds faster per mile, I could have placed. But I didn't.
Overall, I'm happy with my results. I placed higher in my age group than I ever have before. And I was only off my PR by 19 seconds. Not bad considering my PR came during the middle of marathon training which included hills and speedwork. Right now, I'm just maintaining my base and haven't done a week of over 20 miles in several weeks. It's nice to know I haven't lost the conditioning and I can only hope that as I begin to gear up for my October 1/2 ironman and marathon that I will get faster. Overall, I was 115 out of 240 people. That's in the top half and I'll take it.
After the race, I jogged back to the house. So my mileage for the day is over 5 miles. And that helps me not feel so bad about not getting in any other kind of workout. The kids were still at the soccer tournament this morning, so I went to a graduation party and then headed out to my parents for a bit. I'll head up to the church in a little bit for youth group and then come home and get ready for the busy week ahead.
By the way, my son's team got first place in the tournament and my daughter's team got third. Not bad!