Saturday was the “4 the Park” race, a local run to benefit Memorial park and the tremendous loss of trees there since last year’s drought and heat wave. It was my first time racing the 4 mile distance, and as I am still relatively new to racing shorter distances, I was nervous about pacing.
I was also coming off of a fairly light workout week and little running during the week my family was visiting, so I didn’t know if my legs would be shocked by a faster pace or itching to go. My goal was 28 minutes, a 7 minute pace.
The race had an 8:30 start, so my husband and L came along to cheer and spectate. We arrived with plenty of time, and I did a 1.5 mile warm up at an easy pace.
The kids race started at 8am, and L took off running behind them, even though she wasn’t registered. People cheered her on and she was loving it… she didn’t last for long, and she’s only 26 months, but there were kids younger than her and I think she’s ready to do a kids run at the next race, if it’s short!
Our race started right on time. I started near the front, and it was small enough that I didn’t have to do much weaving. My first mile beeped at 6:45! I was really nervous that I would be able to maintain a sub-7 pace, but decided to do my best to hold on. I settled in with two other women, and we were neck to neck almost the entire race.
(I’m the third one, almost cut off the photo, and wow- I need to work on my arm swinging!)
My splits for mile 2 and 3 were both 6:54. The final mile was by far the longest. I pushed myself and passed the two women I was running with. In the final quarter mile, I heard one of the women catching up to me, and I did my best to sprint the final stretch.
Chip time: 27:29 (6:53 pace)
I found the final-sprint-woman afterwards, and thanked her for pushing me! She was really sweet, and we chatted for a few minutes. Her focus is 5k’s, so I’m sure I could learn a lot from her– but I resisted the urge to ask if she needed a running buddy.
I heard my husband and L cheering at mile two, and again in the final stretch to the finish. It makes such a difference having their support at the race!
I was hoping to get in about 9 miles for the day, so I added on another 3.5 miles at the park (on a nice, shaded 3 mile loop) while L played with some other kids at the post-race party.
I also used this as my 10k run for Jess’s JellyBean run , so my final 10k time (with a short break immediately after the race) was 44:18… a pr, but with a break in there, so it doesn’t really count.
As we were getting ready to leave, I saw the results were posted and went over to check it out. I knew there were a number of women in front of me, so I was shocked to see that I placed second in my age group! Gotta love small races. I won a 30 minute massage, which I assume will be mailed to me. Can’t wait to use it!
To make a great day even better, I got a nap in that afternoon while L napped, and then had the treat of a quiet house while L and daddy went to the pool. (Yes, it’s already that hot here!) It was a pretty perfect Saturday.
How was your weekend? Do you get as excited about a quiet house as I do?! Do you think a 2 year old could do a kids race?