09 June 2012

i do things aside from the running, i swear.

today i ran my first 10k.
this was sort of a reward for getting through the month of may and the first week of june.  it was also a trial because i will be running one in october that i wanted to try out a 10k under race conditions before then so i don't lose my mind on the race i should be able to run well (cooler weather, flat course, etc).

may was all about prep for june 6th and 7th.  on the 6th my students hosted their fashion show.  the next day i had my annual review at work.  both of these things require a lot of prep work.  preparing for something i have no control over is mentally draining, and i recover by doing more...  stuff.  make that "stuff i like".  so, may was nutty with activities.  my mother and my college roommate both came for visits.  i sewed 5 new dresses, all from stash fabrics.  i also took care of a few administrative life tasks like renewing my passport, getting my cholesterol checked, buying new running shoes, and other boring adult things.

la de da!
so, the race.  i was going to do a different one a few weeks ago, but my foot was bothering me, so today was my last chance for a 10K before fall.  the heat held back pretty well until the last mile when i was running into the sun and cursing it with every fiber of my being.  at one point i was literally running down the center line of the whitehurst freeway with my eyes barely open mumbling profanity.

the actual running of the race mile by mile went as i expected, for the most part.  i know i am great through mile 3.5, i start to lose my mind around mile 4 and regain some sense of self around 5 and can usually finish strong.  these are under non-race conditions, of course.  i didn't finish as strong today, but i will attribute it to the heat at the end and the adrenaline at the start.  i would have PRed in a 5K today, which is sort of bad because it means i was running the first half of the race way too fast.  then again, the second half was so hot (i dumped water on myself, which i hate, so i was obviously desperate) that covering the first half too fast probably helped me make up time on the average.

it did feel good to look down at my watch at the 5 mile marker and realize that even if i finished the rest of the race at a 10 minute pace, i would still come in under my goal of 55 minutes.  that was when i decided to go for the goal time a friend had said i could make.  he felt confident with my 5k pr, i could do 10k in 52 minutes, so i went for it.  the last turn of the race is down a freeway ramp and under a bridge and as i crossed into the shade i looked at my watch again.  i could see the finish line and i knew that if i kicked it in the ass i would make it in under 50.  i felt like i was going to puke, but i did it anyway and finished in 49:52.  8:02 pace.

i then learned what every vegetarian who loves vegetables and nuts and is less hot on starch and sugar should know: carbs are really really important if you are going to race.  i felt like death all day and i have only snapped out of it (for the most part) since about 8:30 tonight.

no more races until the fall.  my garden and knitting both feel neglected.