Friday, April 17, 2015

Beaverdale 5K recap

Last week was a really rainy one. The gloomy weather made me sleepy and a bit unmotivated.  I prayed it would clear out in time for my race on Saturday --- my third of the year and second outdoor of the year.

My prayers were answered.  Saturday morning was crisp and clear.  I woke up around 6:30 a.m., which is slightly later than I get up during the week but still earlier than I'm used to waking up on weekends. After my traditional race day breakfast of peanut butter toast and water (I'm all out of Spark at the moment), I made the short drive to the race site.

The temperature was a bit more brisk than I was prepared for at 39 degrees.  Brrr.  Someday I'll learn that I want gloves for races that start at that temperature.  But that someday hasn't happened yet.  I shuffled my feet and kept stretching while I waited for the race to start, trying to stay warm.

I also chatted ... of course.  I'm one of those runners.  I like to talk to the person next to me.  The weather and/or race set-up is the first natural bit of conversation, but it usually morphs into discussion on their running journey and history.  This happens every race, I swear.

Last Saturday was no exception.  My neighbor and I were casually chatting about the cool temperatures and how often we do races.  I learned she had a hysterectomy in October, which meant she was sidelined for several weeks.  And then it was winter, which meant she really didn't get outdoors and active again until February (fortunately we had a fairly mild one).  This was her first race since her surgery and she shared with me that she might not be able to run the whole thing.  But ... she was out there.  Less than six months after a major surgery.  Oh, and she also works full-time, has two children, and only took up running a year ago.

Talk about being humbled. I put off workouts all the time because I'm tired or think I'm too busy. Next time I have that thought, I'm going to remember that woman. NO EXCUSES.

This race was the smallest one I've ever been a part of.  As of Friday, there were less than 150 people registered.  Naturally, there were probably some people who showed up the day of and signed up, but it was still a pretty minimal group.  This made me a little self-conscious.  I'm not fast, and when there are hundreds of runners, I usually still end up in the middle of the pack.  I worried I might be further to the back with such a small group.  It was a silly worry, but still ... it was there.

We got started shortly after 8 a.m. The route wound through Beaverdale, which is a really cute area of Des Moines. The houses range from ranch to bungalow to (my favorite) craftsman.  The streets were quiet except for the occasional resident out walking with a stroller or a dog.  My legs were kind of cold, so I started off at a slow but even pace, which I kept for the first two miles or so.  Around the 2.5-mile mark, a girl came up beside me.  I remembered her from earlier in the race, and she seemed to be holding a good pace (if a little faster than mine), so I did my best to stay with her.  We chatted idly between our huffs and puffs.  When we turned the corner and saw the finish line, she started going faster.  So I did too.  We crossed that finish mat together and she gave me a high five.

My finish time benchmarks:
Good - 36:00 or above
Great - 34:01-35:59
Awesome - 34:00 or faster

My official time was 34:24!

This means it was GREAT race and just a few seconds away from being AWESOME.  I have another 5K (a virtual one) in a few weeks, so I'll be aiming for AWESOME on that one. Plus, my personal best in a 5K is just over 33 minutes (I haven't kept very good track of my times, but I'm changing that), so I'd be fun to beat that.

Also, I was curious about my pace for each mile, so I looked at MapMyRun to check out the splits from my watch. Unsurprisingly, the first mile was my slowest.  That is always the case for me.  I really don't get moving until mile 2.  But look at that last mile -- all because of my finishing buddy!

As a music lover, my running playlists are very thoughtfully made. I thought I'd start sharing the song or songs for each race that really get me moving.  

These were my power songs:
"Overcome" by Tyrone Wells
"Afterlife" by Ingrid Michaelson
"Sweat It Out" by Tony Lucca  (This was actually my finish line song. So perfect!)

I've now completed three races toward my goal of 10 for the year. 


Last week's workouts
Friday: Off
Saturday: Beaverdale 5K
Sunday: Off
Monday: Spinning + chest/back/core
Tuesday: 2-mile outdoor run
Wednesday: Off
Thursday: 3 miles on the trails


  1. Congratulations!!! It may be a few seconds from awesome for you, but it's totally awesome to me!

  2. That's an awesome GREAT race!! And good for you having negative splits--I rarely have that!!

  3. Way to go! Keep up the good work! You'll get to awesome soon and even better territory that you didn't plan for! What are you going to label after awesome? I'm totally kicking butt? I think that could be good!


Pin It button on image hover