Low Rent 5K: Race Recap

At any given moment your running will absolutely parallel your real life. That could not have been more true than on Saturday as I tackled my second race of 2017 at the Low Rent 5K. Staying routined, relaxed, and remembering to run happy is the goal this year as I strategically rebuild my strength. I have run long enough to know that if I focus on those things first, the speed will come.

I think I may be in the minority in that I actually love the thrill of a 5K. There is something dramatic about trying to set a pace and hold on as long as possible that satisfies my need for a physical challenge. It is completely opposite in every way to those long, slow distance runs. They both serve my spirit well and look forward to a summer filled with both.

THE GOAL: To run better than I did at the ODU Big Blue. That being my first race in over a year, it simply was practice. Getting the feeling of racing again. Going through the motions and no expectations, which left no pressure on my performance. Saturday’s plan was to not necessarily run faster, but stronger, more seamless, and more comfortable. For reference I finished ODU feeling good at 26:13, walked once for water, and am pretty sure I had resting race face the entire time. When asked what I thought I would run this past Saturday, I knew the window would be from 24-26 minutes.

June is proving to be a month of intoxicating adventure and uncertainty…and one that is testing my patience. And the thrill of new opportunities coming my way came to a head Saturday morning. I woke with shaky palms and a butterfly filled belly. With not much race experience recently, the feeling of pre race nerves hit me harder than it has in a while. While my friends were gathering pre-race, all I wanted to do was stay with them, but I knew the best thing for me was to send myself off on my own for a pre race warm up.  Let go of some of that extra unnecessary energy in my legs. The mile and warm up drills I managed to get in moments before the start proved to be extremely beneficial.

THE RESULT:

Mile 1 I was literally talking to myself. Remembering to get out quick, establish a sustainable pace and relax. Hold, hang. Be patient.

Mile 2 Stay patient I told myself after a quick glance at my watch. I was pacing plenty ahead of schedule from ODU and I knew I had enough for a little pick up in the final mile.

Mile 3 Grateful for the shaded neighborhood streets, it made it more achievable to slightly speed up. I did not look at my watch, but I knew I was approximately 1/2 out from the finish and was moving steady.

The Kick There is something about seeing coach Ryan Conrad and friends (Renee, Josh) cheering in the final 400 meters. When your sole sister yells out “Drop your arms and turn on your glutes!” You do it and drop the pace to 7:00. Thank you Kristy Maute for that. You always know what I need to hear.

A successful 5K with what physically felt like a more seamless, steady stride. No walk breaks and even managed a few cheers and some waves along the way. 25:22. Shedding significant time like that validated my plan, my workouts, and my patience. The training is working. My commitment to staying faithful to routine is paying off.

This was not just the case for me either. Many other friends had significant days as well. Making their way back from injury, from life, from time away. Proof that good things come to those who wait, train, and run happy!

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