5Ks are like childbirth. It hurts like hell during the experience but just a little while later you forget all about it and are ready to do it all over again. In the middle of every 5K I think, "this sucks! Why do I keep signing up for these?" And yet, I do keep signing up. Why? I don't know. It'll make me faster. It's only a few minutes of suffering. You don't really have to train for them. They're fun?
Yesterday I did yet another 5K. Memorial Day is always a celebration of my running. One of my first races was on Memorial Day in 2001. Last year this 5K was in the first race I did after I had the baby. This year I continued the traditional Memorial Day celebration by doing the Field of Heroes 5K again.
After a short warm up, I lined up near the start and took off like a bat out of hell. To make sure I was actually racing, I put a sticker over my watch so I could not see the pace. Regardless, I knew I was running fast, faster than I was probably capable of holding for a full three miles. Frankly, it doesn't matter. The 5K is hard to negative split. I'd rather go out hard and see how long I can hold on.
Turns out, it wasn't that long. Not soon after the one mile mark I was hurting. And I should have been. My watch clocked me at a 6:52 first mile. The second mile had many twists and turns in it and I used it as the opportunity to slow down a bit. I caught a girl in the second mile to get into 5th place female, but I was also passed at the same time by another chick, so I stayed in 6th. One of the turns was 180 degrees down a bridge ramp. Looking back I saw that I was not catchable by another woman so I slowed down some more.
Mile 2 - 7:17
Finally the last mile and I was hating this race big time. I kept thinking, 'I'll take a half marathon any day. This sucks!' Around another curve I looked back to see a girl in a pink shirt gaining on me. Shoot! Get moving Meredith! At this point I knew where I was as I had warmed up on this part of the course. I dug down deep, as deep as I could without yacking (coach would have been so proud).
Mile 3 - 7:19
The last 0.1 of the race I was screaming hard to the finish line. I saw the clock just click over 22:00 as I crossed the timing mat. Wow! I didn't expect that. My PR is in the mid-21:00s so I did alright.
6th place female
Just a few hours later I was already thinking about my next one, which is probably in a few weeks. I have many on the schedule this year. I am so stupid. :)