Life has been kind of crazy, but through it all I’ve been running. You couldn’t really call it TRAINING, but somehow I’ve managed to follow a basic running lifestyle.
Katie has been training for Boston (Monday!), so I did most of her long runs with her, though not the full length of them. I also did the occasional track workout and jumped into two or three of her tempo runs.
But because I haven’t been totally focused, or striving for a goal, I have taken days here and there off, a terrible habit that comes with lack of long term plan. In addition, I’ve been dealing with intermittent fatigue, which unfortunately seems to be a symptom of getting older. Sigh.
So even though I could bang out a 20-miler, and somehow run 6:45 pace for a short tempo run, I failed to be consistent over the last few months.
On the other hand, life at home is steady. I am cooking more, staying on top of everything (mostly!), and putting the kids’ activities first. Though I am happy to put myself last, or at least shelve my own goals for a short period of time, I would be lying if I told you that it wasn’t without occasional regret. I send Katie off to Boston as her cheerleader, though I would love to be joining her.
My fear is that by the time I get my head above water with other priorities, my running goals will impossible to achieve due to aging, etc.
So anyway. I signed up for the Santa Anita Derby Day 5K for fun, just to see where my fitness lands in a time of doubt.
I put myself in the Sub 7:00/mile pace group, not sure if I would even be able to hang with that crowd.
Not being a great 5K racer in the past, I was unsure how to pace the distance, or at least what 5K pace should feel like at my current fitness level.
According to my splits, I was a little too hesitant in the first mile. Looking back, I wish I had gone out at a faster clip to see what would happen.
Granted, I didn’t really taper for this, and I certainly have no recent experience running on flat terrain, but still.
Does the look on my face tell you anything?
I was kind of pissed. More than kind of.
In fact, I left the race immediately, thinking that my time certainly put me out of the running for any sort of age group award.
I checked the results when I got home, and somehow I managed to win my age group as well as first Female Masters athlete. Fifth female.
So this wasn’t a bad result, considering.
I ran the first mile with a group, trying to keep my breathing calm but still moving up a bit through the crowd. The course was fantastic, and the 2nd mile mark came out me quickly. The second mile was run through the Arboretum, which was beautiful, with lots of turns and some rolling terrain. The last mile was sort of this guts out mile run back to the Santa Anita race track. The last .15 was run on the actual track, which was sort of like running in mud, as you can see from the above pic. Generally I save my best bit of the race for last, as that’s how my body tends to work. I couldn’t dig in and sprint due to the surface, but I do think I tried my best.
Since the race, which was on Saturday, I’ve been taking it kind of easy. Partly because I feel a bit defeated, and partly because I am giving myself some time to regroup before I set some long term goals.
So now is the time to find some middle ground. To learn how to balance my family’s needs with my own desire to accomplish my own goals before I get too old to do so. I really want to lower my PR in the 5K as well as jump into some trail races with the hopes of doing another marathon in the fall.
Here’s to a new season!