There is just something about small, local races. Here’s the back story on this one. Our favorite local restaurant is Harvey’s 4th Street Grill – you can find us there at least once a week for brunch. When we heard that Harvey’s sponsored a 5k, we knew we had to run it!
We headed downtown bright and early – dressed in our green to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day!
A little back story on that too. My husband went out with friends from out of town last night in Tampa and didn’t get home until 5:30am. Yes, you read that right. He literally slept one hour before going out and running the 5k. I don’t know how he did it. Needless to say, he is napping right now!
We gathered quite a crew for the Harvey’s 5k. From left to right – Katie, her husband Nathan and their baby, my sister Shannon, me and the Mini Athlete, Kara, Mary, my husband Nate and Mary’s husband Marcus.
We had several 5k newbies including Kara and Katie (though Katie doesn’t really count since she’s already done a 10k and a half marathon!) My sister Shannon decided last night that she would run her first 5k today. Her training consisted of two separate one mile runs this week. I love that she was willing to just come out and give it a go!
You all know that I’ve been dreaming of running a sub 30 minute 5k. I felt good this morning so I decided to give it a go. I had no idea what I was doing – no real strategy – just decided I would run as fast as I could. I realized about two miles in that this is the first time I’ve run a race without my phone in a long time so I apologize for the lack of “in race” photos!
I took off like a bandit. I mean it. I looked down at my Garmin and I saw average pace numbers like “7:34″. Yiiiiikes. I tried to reign it in a little. I knew I couldn’t keep that up very long. I took my first 10 second walking break around a half mile and tried to catch my breath. At this point, I realized I had made the classic race mistake of “going out too hard.” I ran the first mile in 8:59. While I am INSANELY proud of that time, I knew it didn’t bode well for the rest of the race!
I tried to run as fast as possible, and give myself 10 second walk breaks when I felt I needed them. The walk breaks started getting more frequent as time went on. I ran the second mile in 10:09. Still ridiculously fast for me, but obviously slower than the mile before. I knew that I still had the sub 30 minute 5k in sight, but my body just didn’t want to cooperate.
I played every mental game with myself I could. I repeated my favorite race mantras. I thought about your inspiring stories. I thought about injustices in the world. I thought about this post I read this morning by Ericka. I thought about this post I read last night by Britt.
But at some point, I feel like my body disconnected from my brain. I kept telling myself to push faster, but my body simply refused. Or maybe my mental motivation wasn’t quite as strong as I’d like to think. That last mile was tough. And I have to admit – at 2.75 miles with 3 minutes to reach my goal time, I gave up. The finish line felt so far away. I forced myself to keep going. I knew I would PR, and I kept trying to tell myself to focus on that. But I felt frustrated. I passed the 3 mile mark at exactly 30 minutes. SO close. Just one lousy tenth of a mile to go. That third mile took me 11:04 to run. Quite a change from the first mile out.
I crossed the finish line and with a new PR (official time 31:18) – almost THREE minutes faster than my last 5k in November! That sub 30 minute 5k may have eluded me this time, but you better believe I’ll be coming for it soon!
My husband and the Mini Athlete finished before me with a time around 23:47. Pretty ridiculous considering his lack of sleep combined with the fact that pushing a stroller while running is no easy task! Kara came in a few minutes after me and then I saw Katie and her family heading toward the finish line!
I just LOVE that they ran the whole thing as a family. How cute is that?
Not too far behind them were my fellow IRunMommies – Caroline and Ali!
I love that Caroline looks like a total goofball in this photo while Ali looks like a total rockstar. And I love that Caroline won’t mind me saying so.
Right behind those two, I saw my sister Shannon coming in to the finish line!!!
She totally gave it everything she had and sprinted to the finish line.
She beat her goal and finished under 45 minutes! I could not be more proud of her. I think she might have caught the running bug.
You might have noticed that I failed to mention Mary and Marcus. That’s because they were WAY ahead of me. How far ahead? Well, first we learned that Mary won her age group…
And then they announced she had finished as the FIRST woman overall!
She is such a rockstar. But you know what I love most about her? She is one of the most humble people I have ever met. She is so encouraging and supportive to runners of all paces. I am SO proud to know her! Oh and apparently that trophy isn’t her only prize. You’ll have to watch her blog to find out just what else she won.
We walked back to our car and soaked in the beauty of St. Petersburg. Seriously. We live in such a beautiful place!
It only seemed right to celebrate the race with brunch at Harvey’s 4th Street Grill. I told you we love this place! One other family joined us and we had a total of 11 adults and 5 babies under the age of one. We fondly refer to our group gatherings as “Baby Palooza”. Fitting, no?
Despite the length of this post, I still have some other thoughts to share about running with a particular goal in mind – but I’ll save that for another day. It’s amazing how writing this recap took three times as long as actually running the race! I told you this post would be ridiculously long.
It’s time to enjoy the holiday – Happy St. Patrick’s Day!