Damn!! To miss a 5K PR by a matter of seconds!! But considering I haven’t even come close in about 4 years…I am sure taking it!!
Being tired of the Central Park races and climbing Cat Hill for the umpteenth time…I was looking for a fun race to do, figuring the early part of marathon training would be the best time to indulge in a 5K or another short race. I remembered a teammate of mine talking about the Party With Purpose 5K in Hoboken and thought…flat, certified course, no crazy crowds? Bring it on!! And a night race too, which is always fun.
So the pre-race routine went as follows…escape work, hop on the PATH train at Christopher Street, arrive in Hoboken, pick up my bib and chip, go to the nearby NYSC to change and lock up my bag, stretch a little bit, warm up for a coupla miles…easy peasy!! Only thing that unsettled me a little bit was not knowing where the start was…wasn’t clear…had to sorta follow where everyone else was lined up and sneak in there 🙂 Anyway, Flyer YP and JS from the Rez Dogs were lined up with me…the last pre-race bit of advice JS gave me was “don’t go out too fast.” Guess he knows how I pace short races 🙂 Anyway, the gun sounds and we start…
…and we’re off and running. I really, really tried to not let the faster people suck me in, not get intimidated if people were passing me…just concentrate on running hard but not all-out. The first mile went along the water and I wasn’t delirious yet, so I actually enjoyed that 🙂 Anyway…the first mile came up sooner than I thought…in 6:46. Holy.shit. That’s my fastest mile split ever in a race. At that point…3 thoughts went through my head:
1. OMG-I really did go out too fast.
2. But it didn’t *feel* too fast!! This could be interesting if I kept up the effort.
3. I don’t feel like looking at the distance on Mr. Garmin right now, but maybe this mile was short.
Whatever, I just kept plugging along for mile 2, if anything it gave me a little boost of confidence…as my preliminary goal was to run around 23 minutes…preferably under 🙂 Had a turnaround at around the 1.5 mile point…probably the only “slow” part of the course (turnarounds always seem to do that!!) Mile 2 came up in a more realistic 7:29…ok, maybe I slowed but I was at 14:15 cumulative…hmmm, could I really be on PR pace???
Mile 3 was pretty much the same as mile 1, just going in the opposite direction, but at that point, I wasn’t really taking in any sights, I was just concentrating on running hard. I passed a water station and someone cheered and called me by name but I didn’t even see or know who the heck it was 🙂 I tried to keep things like the OT 5K in mind to inspire me to stay strong and pick it up just a little bit more (I wanted to run a “smokin’ hot” last mile…hehe.) Finally, in the distance I could see where the turnoff was to the pier and the finish…all I had to do was GET there!! No mile 3 marker, but as I got to the turnoff, I looked at my watch quickly and saw the time was 21:xx, and not knowing how long I had left to go…holy shit, this is gonna be CLOSE!!! I decided to not look at my watch again til the end and just run, who cares if it hurts, it’ll all be over soon. I thought of Amy Begley trying to make the “A” standard in the 10K by seconds. I heard both JS and YP cheering for me. I heard the announcer encouraging those of us approaching to get in under 23 minutes!!! I pulled out one last finishing kick…crossed the chip mat, stopped my watch, breathed a sigh of relief it was over.
And did I do it? Not quite…according to my watch, wound up with 22:42, 7:19 pace (22:44 according to the official results)…missing my 22:37 PR by a matter of seconds!! 8:27 for that last 1.1 miles (which I think was long and mile 1 was short…I know I slowed, but not that drastically!) But I know I gave it my all…as I hit a new HR max (188…I was previously claiming 185) and I was just delirious afterwards…when I got my clip clipped, I couldn’t even speak full sentences.
So, afterwards, I caught up with YP (who had a huge PR) and JS (who ran just over 19 minutes and was very happy with his race!)…checked out the results to see if I possibly could have placed…dammit, 7th in 30-39!! The times really got more competitive this year…but oh well, still damn good!! JS and I then celebrated our races with a coupla Blue Moons at the post-race party (gotta love drink specials for race participants!) and my baby bro even joined us to catch a coupla innings of the All-Star game at the bar. Fun nite-definitely worth skipping the Philharmonic picnic with the Flyers for 🙂
And as for missing a PR? Seriously, when you consider that said PR was set in 50 degree weather (it was around 80 last nite), no tired marathon training legs (I had done a long run Saturday and the 10K at training pace on Sunday-so not exactly tapered!) and that I have not even come close to that time since the PR was set…I was very happy!! Yay…back in the game!!