triumph over pain 10k race recap.
(Update – official chip time of 59:42! Still not bad at all. Bad news – my right knee is acting up now. Icing it and resting for a couple of days. My mantra is – I’d rather rest now so I can continue running, even when I’m 60!)
Here I am, typing away on my little netbook as I lay on the couch. Resting. Whew – what a morning! Completed my 2nd 10k race, the Triumph Over Pain 10k. I didn’t meet my goal of running 6.2 miles in 56 minutes but I did run it in 58:50 (according to my Garmin)! Very thankful for that time and just grateful that I got through it.
Let me explain myself. I’m of the belief that not every run is great. Whether it’s a training run or an actual race. You win some, you lose some. (Well, I guess I always lose in a race because I don’t ever win, haha.) Sometimes you feel amazing during a run. And some days? It’s just incredibly hard. I have to say today was one of those days.
Maybe it’s because I didn’t warm up properly, but the first several miles for me are always difficult. My legs take forever to warm up and therefore, they feel so heavy. That’s what happened today. But let me backtrack . . .
The weather was definitely cooler than it had been all week. Actually, I felt pretty cold but maybe it’s because I’m a weather weenie. I think the temperature was between 50 and 55 degrees? I wore running tights, shorts, and a long-sleeved tee under a short-sleeved one. The wind at the race course was blowing pretty heavily, which made it even colder. It was a semi-flat terrain (there were gradual hills) and not a lot of buildings to block the wind. My running class friends and I all met up and did a very quick warm-up. I knew for me that it was a bit too early; afterwards, we stood around for about 5 minutes, maybe longer, before the race started. Too early of a warm-up and it almost always spells “disaster” for me. As in – heavy legs and painful running. I was correct.
I was running with 4 of my friends at the start of the race but maybe at 2.5 miles or so, I ended up needing to use the bathroom. I was in a bit of a panic because this was such a small race and I had no idea if there would be any port-a-potties anywhere on the course (we were running through an expensive housing subdivision). Thankfully I spotted a lone port-a-potty at a construction site, saw a girl leave it, deemed it useful and I did my business. My friends kept running and after I was done using the restroom, I was behind them for quite a while, but I could still see them. I probably wasted good energy trying to reach them, but I did manage to catch up to them.
Anyways, those first four miles were HARD. I know I took off at a much faster pace than what I had intended but that’s what happens when you’re running in a pack. My faster pace, plus my heavy heavy legs made for some difficult running. I couldn’t believe that it took four miles for my legs to finally feel good. I don’t mind it for longer distances, like a half-marathon, but for shorter distances, it’s not so good. I seriously wanted to quit so many times, or just walk the course, but I kept going. I think, besides the restroom break, I walked for like 10 seconds but that was about it. My competitive nature kept me going (and the Lord’s help too!). I wasn’t running this race to compete with any of my friends but I wanted to run 6 miles under an hour. I wanted to run the entire 6.2 miles in 56 minutes. We know that didn’t happen.
The course was kind of janky (I know that’s not a word) – there was a 5k race that started the same time as the 10k so we had to go through the finish line and keep running. Um, discouraging! Plus, there were zero spectators asides from the supportive water stations. The course was ugly (either just big houses or empty lots), and a bit hilly than what I was expecting. The wind again didn’t help. However, I kept going, praying every so often for strength to finish the race in good time. At around mile 4.5 or so, my friend Dinora and I ran ahead of our other friends and at mile 5, she took off ahead of me. So proud of her (her goal was just to finish the race in under an hour and she did)! I had no more juice left in me to push. I remembered that I was in this to race against myself (my first 10k race was in 2006? and I did it in 1:13:26) and not anyone else (call it a cop out, if you may, but that’s how I view my races). As I turned to the street about 2 blocks away from the finish line, I spotted the photographer and gave him a huge smile and a thumb’s up sign. He smiled at me. I turned another block, stopped for a few seconds to spit and honestly felt like throwing up, some ladies on the sidewalk asked me if I was okay and told me to just walk the rest of the race, but I kept going. The finish line was not too far away! So I ran with as much strength as I had left in me, which was not a lot at all.
I caught up with my friends as they all crossed the finish line and we were all tired but so happy. I couldn’t imagine doing this race just by myself, you know? I run with a great group of people – thankful for all of them and thankful for my coach Daniel who finished 2nd place overall in his 5k race (in 18 minutes!). Though this race was hard for me and I didn’t meet my exact goal, I was glad my friends were there for support and encouragement and it was great to see everyone’s accomplishment.
Before I end this already long post and before I beat myself up for not meeting my goal time (because I know that I did well regardless), I am going to make a list instead of some of the positives in this race:
1. I ran it with my friends. What could be more awesome than that?
2. The weather was beautiful and temperature was cold. Better than running in the heat!
3. My right knee really didn’t hurt during the race, just a small tinge here and there.
4. Even though I took a quick break to use the restroom, I still finished the race in good time.
5. I am proud that I ran 6.21 miles in 58:50!
6. With God’s help, I was able to raise $307 for the charity I was fundraising for, Samaritan’s Purse and their emergency relief efforts. This was really important to me and I’m glad to have had the opportunity to help people who are in need.
7. My last mile was my fastest, at 8:42, giving me hope that I maybe could possibly one day work up to running an 8-minutes mile for 3 miles.
8. We all ate at IHOP afterwards and totally negated all the calories we lost while running 🙂