Surprise! I ran a 10K.
AG (F30-39): 10/11
Time: 1:09:10 (Not bad for a non-chip-timed race!)
Distance: 6.24 mi
Heart Rate: N/A
What I ate the night before: tacos, chips and guacamole
What I ate on race morning: gel, crackers
What I carried with me: water
What I wore: t-shirt, shorts
Gadgets: GPS watch, fitness tracker
Discussion: I guess I’m a bit delusional. I thought somehow I was in shape to run a one hour 10K! It turns out, not even close, although conditions were not ideal.
I signed up for this race only a couple days ago. I knew I wanted to run a 10K this summer but it never seemed like there was a convenient one that I wanted to do. I actually heard about this race via a Facebook ad, so congrats on that, Zuckerberg. The race was in White Bear Lake, a place I’d never actually visited until I picked up my packet on Friday. The guy running packet pick-up was wearing a Chippewa Moraine t-shirt and had just run Voyageur the previous weekend, so I knew this would be a good race for me.
I didn’t sleep very well the night before. I kept worrying that the race would be so small that I’d be 30 minutes after the second to last runner and would annoy everyone. I don’t mind being last at races, but I do mind being last by so much that I’m an inconvenience. I don’t worry about it at 5Ks anymore, but 10Ks are a different animal, especially when there’s a shorter 5K option. 10Ks are a big commitment! I have to stop worrying so much about races.
I woke up in the morning and thought about not running. I even woke up before my alarm! That was annoying. I told myself if I could fall asleep before my alarm went off, I could skip it. Of course, I couldn’t — I was too busy worrying about how much I’d be angry with myself later, and how I’d still have to get in a long run, and blah blah blah. So I got up, got dressed, and drove the 20 minutes to the start of the race. It was really easy (and free) to park, and there weren’t a whole lot of people there (only 105 racers overall).
I did a mile warm-up and was already sweaty. Like, not just a few beads of sweat, but really sweaty. It was in the mid 70s and humid and wasn’t even 8 a.m. yet. Not a great sign. The race started basically at 8, and we started with a loop through a neighborhood before coming back around through the start and heading the other way around the lake. Since I’m not really familiar with the area and the course was a bit unusual, it’s hard to describe. The course was a mix of sidewalks and roads, and mostly flat. They didn’t close the roads or have any crossing guards (except for at one spot, where we turned onto a busier road), so that was a bit unusual. I didn’t love running along a 40 mph road with a rather narrow shoulder, but it wasn’t exceptionally busy. I did have to stop once in the last third of the race because of a car, which was slightly annoying. There were quite a few other pedestrians, dogs, non-racing runners, and a few bikers on the sidewalks/paved paths. At one point, I was following some people I thought were in the race, and almost went the wrong way. Fortunately, there were signs along the route as well as volunteers at every turn, so I didn’t get lost when those people went right and I was supposed to go left.
The race itself was miserable for me. I hated most of the first 2 miles, and I fell off 59:59 pace within the first mile. The humidity was killer; my shirt was drenched in sweat and clung to me within the first couple miles — that is NOT normal. So maybe I should give myself a pass on not nailing my first 10K, but I also know that I could have pushed harder. My average pace for this race was only like 20 seconds off what I want to run for marathon pace! It seems like maybe sub-5 is out of my hands right now. Yes, it was humid and warm, and yes I was tired and hadn’t taken a rest day since Monday so I didn’t have fresh legs, but still. It was a wakeup call.
Each mile was progressively slower than the previous one — no consistency in pace at all. Mile 6 was 11:55 average! I mean, come on, what is wrong with me? Slowness and laziness, I guess. There was a woman ahead of me who had passed me but stayed in sight, and she was taking walking breaks. If I had been more driven, I would have made a little goal to try to pass her. Well, I kind of did make that goal, but I didn’t work very had to try to achieve it. I managed to pick up the pace for the last quarter mile and finish with some pride, but overall it was a disappointing effort.
I did set a goal to run a 10K this summer, and I achieved that. And I guess I have a PR that I can chip away at, even though I spent a lot of the race thinking how much I disliked the distance. It’s hard! I prefer the half marathon for a middle distance type race, and I prefer the 5K for when I want to push the envelope. But now that it’s over, I don’t mind as much, and I’d like to do one again in better weather, when I’m rested, to try for a faster and more consistent effort.
I went home and took a two hour nap, something I almost never do, and I still have like 7 miles of running I need to get done this evening (this is my long run day — the plan called for a half marathon but I didn’t feel like racing a half marathon and I AM SO GLAD I DIDN’T SIGN UP FOR ONE even though there was one run practically in my neighborhood. It was nice to run a race – I haven’t raced since FANS, which was two months ago! Weird.