Had a great time at today’s St Patrick’s Day 8k. The weather this morning was a nice brisk, 30 degrees or so, but the sun was out in full force thanks to Daylight Savings Time. There was a great crowd, with great energy and a sea of green, orange, and white. Due to the large number of participants, runners had to line up in corrals. Yours truly was in the last corral, for those with a pace of 12 min/mi and up. When it was time for me to get going, I got off to a pretty strong start. I’d run this same course only a few months ago in December/January in the Jingle All the Way 8k so I knew what to expect…I always feel like when I am familiar with a course I can zone out and just focus on running versus adapting to what may come next.
I ran strong, I ran hard, and I kinda ran outta steam by mile 3. BUT, I kept pressing forward, determined to beat the time I’d set at the Jingle All the Way 8k. Hills were very few, the course was mostly flat with a few inclines…and so I just kinda zoned out and let my legs do the rest. By mile 3 my iPod shut off, and so I ran in silence with only my thoughts to keep me company. No big deal…I got to have a lovely conversation with myself about various things while mentally encouraging myself to keep moving. I didn’t walk not once, though I almost came close, but determined to keep moving and pushing myself to do what I believe I could accomplish, I kept those feet moving. The final mile I tried to give it my best and really went for it. I had a nice strong finish, and when it was all said and done? A PR!
My official race time was 01:02:56 with average pace of a 12:40 min/mi. According to my gps, I ran 5.25mi in 01:03:37 with an average pace of a 12:07 min/mi. Either way, I ran a sub 13 min mile, and while of course I’m more likely to claim the time and distance according to my gps, I’m happy with both. The point is that in these shorter distances, when I push myself, I am a lot faster than I thought I would be. I’m so used to running somewhat conservatively during my training runs, especially when it comes to running the longer distances. Slowly but surely breaking out of that frame of thinking when it comes to race day and the shorter distances, and I’m loving the progress that has since become evident. Check below for the splits from the race (according to my GPS):
Next up…Rock-N-Roll Half Marathon, Saturday, March 17, 2012. My first Half, most certainly not my last…and one race closer to the Marine Corp Marathon!!!!