When you combine those two, I have just entered Heaven!
We signed up for this Memorial Day Classic 5k originally because we though friends were going to do it with us. However, they bailed, but we were already registered. We had also seen that they offered a kids one mile fun run, and with the kids now having 6 weeks of track under their belts, I knew that they could handle it.
I have been excited all weekend about this race. I was going over my race history and realized that my most recent 5k PR is two years old. I have done well in some of the 5k portions attached to tris, but for a stand alone 5k, my current PR is 28:12 from two years ago. I knew I could beat it, and was excited to have a chance too!
We got up early in the morning, and we all put on our race shirts. I am such a dork, because I almost got weepy at the sight of my husband and kids and I all in our matching race shirts. It means so much to me to share this with them! I gave the kids some instructions about how and where to wait for Ken and I since we would be racing before they would. They were excited and Ken and I headed off to the start of the 5k. I made sure that I had my music ready, on the race play list, and due to past races where the battery was dead, I made sure I had charged it as well :)
The gun went off and I knew I was going fast. I wondered if it was too fast, and hindsight, it may have been, but not too bad. I slowly settled into a "comfortably hard" pace and tried to focus on my breath and maintain it as best I could. I decided to leave my watch at home and just run by feel. I didn't want the annoying beeping or alerts to drive me nuts, so I had no idea how fast I was going, just that I was running at a pace that was hard and fast. I passed several people, but by the half way point some women started to pass me. This really bugged me! I usually don't care, but they looked about my age, so I tried hard to at last stay with them the best that I could, and they really pushed me the second half. I felt good, but the last hundred yards or so I knew that I couldn't go any faster. I felt like I was going to puke. Then, I got excited that I felt that way! I have heard time and time again that with these shorter distances, if you aren't uncomfortable you are doing it wrong, and the whole thing should "hurt like Hell". Well, mission accomplished! It was TOUGH those last hundred yards or so, but thankfully, I didn't puke! When I got to the finish, I noticed that the clock said 26:08. A new PR by over two minutes! WOOHOOO!
I then busted out my cell phone and scanned the QR Code on my Bib and that is when I saw this:
I had officially landed #3 in my age group! My first podium finish ever! And in a running event to boot! I was so excited, I couldn't stand it!
Then Ken finished! He had a great time, and improved by 3 minutes from his time last year at the SL Running Co 5k.
Then we were off to see the kids start off the Kids One Mile Run. I worried about this a little because my kids complain at track about running one lap around the track. I kept telling them that this race would be the same as if they were running 4 laps around the track. However, they surprised me and did very well. Joshua, who has not done well in the shorter sprint distances blew us away today! He came in 4th over all on the mile with over 40 kids competing! He was so proud of himself, and I may or may not have cried a little at his finish :)
Janae finished middle of the pack for this group. She is the opposite of her brother, she is a sprinter. Give her anything from 50-200m and she will kill it. I knew this would be a challenge for her, but she did great, finished with a smile, and that smile only grew bigger when she heard us cheering for her. I loved what she told me at the finish, "Mommy, I was so tired, but you and Daddy cheering for me made me run faster".
We took a breather for a minute or two after the kids race then went over the awards. Here I am with my first age group medal!
Ken and I both with our medals. I love this picture!
We were ready to go, then I could see that the Half Marathoners were coming in. I ran over to the finish just in time to see my friend, Dave pass through. He finished in a great time, and is well on the road to qualifying for Boston. He is a great mentor and always there to help me see the positive in what I sometimes see as crappy work outs.
Today could not have been better. I am so proud of my family. Not only do they come to countless races to cheer me on, they sacrifice things I know they would rather be doing to support me. To share in this with them was priceless. It was so good to see progress we have ALL made. I love that my kids are turning into runners. I love seeing them have pride and joy in the sport that has literally changed my life. I don't care if they keep competing, or if they just run for their own enjoyment, but it is something that I hope "sticks".
What's next? I have the Little Red Century Ride on Saturday, and the Big Bear Lake Sprint Tri in just over 3 weeks.
In the mean time, Happy Racing!