“At first an ordeal and then an accomplishment, the daily run becomes a staple, like bread, or wine, a fine marriage, or air. It is also a free pass to friendship.”
~ Benjamin Cheever, Strides

Monday, July 30, 2012

Giant Eagle 5K Recap

Race: Giant Eagle 5K
Distance:  3.1 miles
Date:  July 29, 2012, 7:15am start
Finish time:  28:55 - 9:18 min/mile average
What sets this race apart:  Part of the Giant Eagle Multisport Festival, part of the Bicentennial Fitness Challenge

This is the first 5K that I have ever raced!  As I have started getting better at this whole running thing, I was hoping to finish a 5K under 30 minutes.  Honestly though, I didn't think it would happen at this race for two reasons:  (1) I ran 12 miles as part of my marathon training, including hills, the day before; (2) To date, I had not turned in a run of this distance under a 10 min/mile average.  (I run my LSD runs with the 12 min/mile pace group).

The weather was clear and around 70 during the race, which is as perfect as we're going to get at the end of July. 
From left to right: Lynne, Me and Lindsey
Training buddies pre-race!  Lindsey ran the 10K!
This was a big event in that the Giant Eagle Multisport Festival is a big event.  Only 117 people finished the 5K though - so it was nice running in a slightly smaller race.  They had a 10K and a 2K fun run/walk starting that same morning, but the race officials did a great job in spacing all three out.  (10K started 5 minutes after the 5K, and the 2K started 5 minutes after that.) 

Lynne and I started the 5K together.  We agreed that we were going to race it, but also see how our legs felt because of the 12 mile run the day before.  I looked down during the 1st mile to see 9:25 on the Garmin pace and was a bit shocked.  I considered slowing down - but then we heard the grunting man.

If you've ever run a central Ohio race, you would know about the grunting man.  He loudly grunts HUH every couple hundreds of a second the entire race.  The. Entire. Race.

I told Lynne - "That guy CANNOT beat me."  How's that for motivation?  I know, I'm evil and will burn in hell or something of that nature.

After the first mile, Lynne needed to fall back, and after she wasn't there to talk to, I struggled mentally a bit.  (Can I really run sub-10 minute miles?)  Thank goodness for the grunting man and being competitive!  After the second mile where I was still under a 10 min/mile average, I started telling myself that it was only a mile left.  Only half a mile left, etc.  I'm happy to say that I passed several people in this last mile and wasn't passed by anyone after the first 1.5 miles.  Races are definitely more fun when you're passing instead of being passed!

I skipped both aid stations (which had water) because I actually wore my fuel belt for a 5K.  My excuse?  Somewhere to put my keys and the inability to drink water from a cup while running.  (I didn't want to walk through water stops).

I enjoyed the course, despite the concrete sign labeling the park we had to hop over to get to the finish line.  The finish line was up in a grassy area in McPherson Commons downtown.  The post-race refreshments were awesome.  Apples, bananas, orange slice, bagels, frozen greek yogurt bars and water bottles.  (I think they were so awesome because there were also a bunch of triathletes that were going to be finishing in the same spot!)

After grabbing an orange slice, bagel, water and my finisher's medal, I went over to the Bicentennial Fitness Challenge table and picked up my SECOND medal.  Yes, second medal.  It's like second breakfast, but better.   Anyone that ran the Capital City race and any Giant Eagle Event got  this medal for doing both.  I won't lie, it's the main reason I chose this 5K to race.  Both medals were AWESOME.  Large with cool ribbons.  
Lynne and I by the Finish Line with our 2 medals each!
By the numbers:
Mile 1: 9:10
Mile 2: 9:38
Mile 3: 9:18
last bit: 7:49
Total: 28:55 official time; 28th out of 117 and 2nd in F 30-34!

I cannot tell you how exciting it is to NOT be in the bottom half of the results for the first time ever!  I was on a race high for the rest of the day yesterday!  To add to the awesomeness?  I wasn't sore and did not injure myself by running faster.  Woohoo!

My favorite part though??  Staying around and cheering obnoxiously for my friends as they also crossed the finish line!
We rocked the 5K.  I love that Rachel is also wearing her husband's medals.
The race swag was pretty nice as well.  The shirt wasn't.   It is white with simple graphics and the sizing was crazy.  I got a medium, and it's still baggy.  All of my usual race shirts are L or XL.  Here's my swag bag (minus the not-so-great shirt - forgot to put it in for the picture)
Bag, bottle, visor - not bad!
All in all, great race!  I would definitely do that again, despite the packet pickup issues, but maybe that's the sub-30 excitement talking.  I guess that'll get me out of my funk!  :)

This one is my medal, right Mommy?

Have you ever received 2 medals at one race?

Did you race this weekend?


  1. Congrats on an awesome race, Mandy!!!! No races for me this weekend, I would love to find a (cheap) 5k soon, though.

    1. There's an awesome and cheap 5K Labor Day weekend - Run 4 the Health of it! Check it out! (this is local Anne, right?)

  2. Congratulations!! Great recap :)

  3. Congratulations!! I love getting an extra series medal and I love small races. Great job!

  4. I just clicked over from your comment on Chocolate is my Life. Congrats on the great 5k! I just had a great 5k a couple weeks ago and it was really nice to be in the top half of finishers. Your little girl is adorable too!

    1. Thanks for checking out my blog! Congrats on your great 5K too!!!

  5. Great job on your race and yay for two medals! I have never got two medals before.

    No races for me this weekend. I don't have any for a couple weeks.

  6. Congrats to you!! What an awesome race and confidence booster. Too funny about the grunting man, we have a few of those around here too. We need do whatever it takes to push ourselves through a 5k, and you did!

  7. congrats to you - you killed it! especially after a 12-mile training run the day before...impressive!

  8. No more funk for sure! That's so awesome! Grunting man is as good a motivation as any, I say. Congratulations, Mandy--truly a great race. Maybe we'll get to Boston together.....

  9. Nice job on the 5K! I think racing on the same day in different races is our new thing! Maybe next time I could try to run sub 10s with you for a full 5K instead of my measley 1.86!

    Totaly proud of you!!!

  10. Congratulations!!! Looks like such a fun event!


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