So I ran my 5K this morning. It was hard. Much harder than I think it should have been, to be honest! Some thoughts & observations:
* I am still sick. Today I feel worse than yesterday; I am feeling pretty congested, and can no longer breathe out of my nose. I stayed overnight at my cousin’s apartment last night, who lives in Fort Worth, about three blocks from where the race started (and finished). When I got winded going down the stairs to my car this morning, I knew it would be a tough run. But I ran. And I tried really hard not to do too much whining. :)
* It was good to be in the race atmosphere, and for what was a pretty small race, I felt it was done well. It was fun, there were lots of people around, lots of fruit and smoothies to sample, and there was good music playing. At the halfway point, there was a water station, and even for such a short race, they had mile markers set up. When I put my electronic chip on my shoe, I felt like a legitimate runner. Ha!
* The race was not entirely awesome, however. The starting line and finish line were at the same place, and the path leading in/out of it was very very narrow. It was frustrating. When the race started, there were of course a lot of people packed into this tiny space, and we were all trying to get around each other; I had forgotten what that was like. I can only imagine how it will be at the half marathon, when there are thousands of people lined up to start the race. There was a guy at the start that seemed to be trying his very best to annoy me, and did so with a lot of success! When I would go right to get around him, he would go right and cut me off. When I turned back to the left to go around him the other way, he turned back to the left and cut me off again. He didn't seem to hear me when I told him I was coming up on his right (or left) to pass. Oh well! Then, as I approached the finish line, there were three people in front of me running side by side. And because the trail was so narrow, there’s no way I could have gone around them, even though I wanted to. On either side of this little pathway was a big drop-off/steep hill.
* The race was NOT on a road, which is what I had expected. It wasn't a trail race, either. It was sort of somewhere in between. The race went through Trinity Park in Ft Worth, and it was more of a dirt/gravely kind of road. A walking trail, I guess. It wasn’t awful. Just softer than actual road is, and a different surface than I am used to running on. At one point we were running along the river on a concrete trail, and that was definitely the easiest part of the race. The race started and ended on a grassy hill. It felt like I was in high school cross country all over again. It smelled and felt the same.
* My official chip time was 32:53. My goal was to finish under 32, and of course I wonder if I could have, were I actually feeling my best. But of course, it is what it is. I ran as hard as I was able today, and I cannot worry about what "could have been". I will simply try to improve from here, and see what I can do at the next race.
All in all, it was a fun morning! I hope I am not down too long which whatever has me feeling yucky! I have a big training week ahead.