“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, June 3, 2013

Jake Strong 5K Recap

Race: Jake Strong 5K
Distance:  3.1 miles
Date:  June 1, 2013, 8 am
Finish time:  25:54
What sets this race apart:  The kids

The Jake Strong organization is on a mission to race $1 million for pediatric cancer research.  It started when Jacob (Jake) Strong was diagnosed with Ewing's Sarcoma, a rare bone cancer.  I got involved with this race because my trainer and his aunt know Jacob and his family.  

At the start of the race, another cool kid, Liam, who also happens to have a tumor, started the race with a funny story about his brother.  It was truly touching listening to a kid just be a kid despite it all.

My trainer had a lot of clients running this race because of his connections to the race, and had decided to run with three of us that were all planning to run around an 8 minute mile average.  I was a little worried about keeping that pace because the weather had been rather swampy lately and my asthma has not been pleased.  On the other hand, I also knew that the chance to have people to run with, keeping me motivated at that pace was rare, so I decided to try for it anyway.  I want that sub-25 minute 5K!  

The first mile clocked in at 7:55 min/mile.  This was faster than I'd originally planned, and I let it get into my head.  My trainer and his other two clients seemed to be speeding up instead, so I decided to drop back a little bit and ease off the throttle.

The second mile clocked in at 8:03 min/mile.  This was still just a tad faster than originally planned, but pretty close to the plan.  In this mile, the course goes on a little loop and returns back on itself.  I was able to see my friends Sarah and Lynne speeding along, as well as my husband pushing Avery in the stroller and my friend Lindsey who was running her first 5K.  All fantastic boosts!  I wondered whether they could all tell my lungs were complaining!  HA!

I knew I was ahead of plan, and all my Garmin measured miles had chimed in sync with the mile markers.  I am not used to pushing myself this much.  For the last 0.5 mile of mile 3, I convinced myself to keep pushing by telling myself that I was on track for the sub-25 minute finish, and if I got it, I never had to race a 5K again.  LOL.  I was breathy and ahead of pace, so I backed off a little bit in the third mile to catch my breath and save a little for the final sprint.  I'm annoyed that I felt I needed to do this, but in the end, it wouldn't really matter.  Mile 3 was an 8:14 min/mile.  

Although my watch hit 3 miles right at the 3 mile marker, I could tell the finish line was more than 0.1 miles away.  I picked up the pace anyway, because based on my average pace, I was on track for my sub-25 minute 5K.  My last 0.24 miles pace was 7:33 min/mile.
Me at the finish...yes, behind the little boy.  :)
I saw 25:5X on the clock as I crossed the finish line.  (My final distance was 3.24 miles).  I was less than happy, not going to sugar coat it.  I took some water and Gatorade because heat and humidity make me THIRSTY.  The volunteers were awesome!  Then, I went over to where my trainer and the other two clients were hanging out.  They'd finished just ahead of me, 20 seconds ahead to be exact.  I was grumpy and it showed.  I feel kind of bad about it now, actually.  Normally, it doesn't bother me that much when a 5K is off, but I hit the pace I needed to finish sub-25, and didn't get it.  I was bummed.  Once I shook it off, I hurried back to the finish line to cheer in my friends and my family.
Lindsey, Mark and Avery bringing it home!
Other than the course being slightly long, the only other negative from a race perspective is that there were quite a few people doing a "fun run" as part of the 5K, but didn't do the entire 5K.  (I checked to see if this was advertised as part of the race, and it wasn't).  As a result, there was a large group of walkers to dodge in the last mile.  They were there as part of Team Liam (mostly), though, so it is hard to really complain about that.  :)

I stayed for the awards ceremony, because I thought it was possible I would age-group based on last year's race results.  

First time I have ever heard my name in a race awards ceremony!  (The other races I've placed in didn't have ceremonies).  I was second in my age-group and won a $10 gift card to Fleet Feet.  AWESOME!   It was pretty cool having several of my friends there to cheer with me about it too.
My husband is taking the picture, instead of being pictured, the brat.
This was the first race where my husband, Avery and I all were in the race.  That's pretty darn cool.   
A family that races together...
My friend Sarah beat her race goal by a lot, and my friend Lindsey ran her first 5K while making it look easy.  I was also able to run a 3 mile cool down with my friend Lynne post race so that we could chat and get a few more miles.  All in all, a pretty great day!

Unfortunately, I will still have to race at least one more 5K to chase that ever-elusive sub-25 minute time though.

Anyone else race this past weekend?

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