How NOT to run a race: Crime Prevention 5K

I registered for the Crime Prevention 5K because:
A. It was an evening race, and we usually run after work
B. A very flat course
C.  The start line is outside my office window

What I didn’t realize was:
1.  It’s still August in Mobile, so HUMIDITY – duh!
2.  When I got to the start line I would’ve run all of 5 miles in the preceding week and a half.  #stupidshinsplint

So I taped up my shin and knew I wouldn’t get under that elusive 40 minutes, and frankly, hoped I wouldn’t have to drop out.  This ended up being a bigger local 5K, with almost 300 entries, not including the 2 baby stollers and 2 dogs.  Between the crowd and stress about my leg holding up, I totally lost composure at the start and with it, my game plan to stay calm and cool and use this as a supported training run.  I had at least programmed my Garmin for 5 minute run/1:30 minute walk to hopefully keep my shin at least placated.

When the gun went off, instead of starting slow and controlling my pace, I reverted back to race panic mode and took off like lightening had just hit.  I thought I’d lost Mark for good.  On the up side, I didn’t feel any pain.

Mile 1:  13:26

For some people, that isn’t a fast pace, but I know for me, it’s not sustainable for 3.1 miles.  I haven’t run more than 3.5 miles at a time since November, and at my best, a 14:00 mi is good for me.  Mark caught up to me, and I tried to pace myself off of people I thought looked to be about my pace.  But the damage was already done.  I had a hard time catching my breath and had to walk extra.

Mile 2: 14:59

Mile 2 was pretty much a suckfest.  I walked way more than I wanted to, and got really down on myself.  When I did run it was only for about 3 minutes at a time.  My legs felt wiped out already. I made the fatal mistake of not taking a handheld with Nuun.  The race was well supported with water, but I’m used to drinking Nuun in addition to taking a salt tab.  The effects of the salt tab faded pretty quickly, and by 2.5 my fingers were swollen like sausages.

Mile 3: 15:10

I asked Mark to help pace me during the last mile.  I still wasn’t running full intervals, and I was feeling nauseous from the humidity.  At least there was a breeze that kept us a bit cooler.

Mile 3.2 (yes, this course was long.  Get it right, Productions by Little Red Hen!): 12:27

So obviously my legs had more left in them than I thought.

Official (Gun) time: 45:51
Garmin time: 45:42
Age: 11/13
Females: 106/114

As bad as I felt about my effort, Strava let me know that for the actual first 3.1 miles I ran, this was my second fastest 5K.  That really made me feel better since I see some improvement over my first 5K 2 years ago.  I learned once again I need to work on my hydration and make a real effort to hold back in the first mile.  I also need to get better at my mental game and digging in deep when it hurts.  I keep learning these same things over and over.  I just need more practice.

And yes, I did pay for the effort in my shin the next day.

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One Response to How NOT to run a race: Crime Prevention 5K

  1. Pingback: Can’t Leave Well Enough Alone | Runs With Glitter

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