so close!!

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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚ 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 πŸ™‚

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!!

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12 thoughts on “so close!!

  1. hey, great race! Congrats on the near PR in steamy conditions… if you pick another flat 5K in, say, October, that old PR is history!!

  2. thanks! unfortunately i don’t think i can indulge in any 5ks in the fall-when i am peaking and then tapering for NYCM, but someday… πŸ™‚

  3. No…. in the fall, you should taper and THEN peak, not the other way ’round like most people invariably do. LOL

  4. oh, right. forgot about that… well, then make it a chilly 5k in the winter once you’ve recovered. πŸ˜‰

  5. jud-peak mileage!! what did you think i meant? :-pscarinzic-with global warming the way it has been, a december 5k just might be 50 degrees!!

  6. I meant peaking in FITNESS, not mileage. I don’t use those marathoner referencesβ€””peak mileage”β€”ha, what’s that?Unfortunately (and this is the other thing I meant), too many NYC Marathoners, due to overzealousness or ego or whatnot, “peak” (fitness-wise) usually around September or October, well before the actual race. By the time THE DAY THAT COUNTS rolls around, they’re either injured or “well past peak” (a/k/a stale or flat), and well beyond repair. Somehow all these hotshots I know who ran 7-flat pace on their long runs could barely go faster than 8:30’s or 9:30’s in the last 10K of the marathon. It shouldn’t be that way.Okay, I know that was totally off-topic so I’ll stop ranting now…. πŸ™‚

  7. I think you can run a superb 5K even after the marathon (a couple of weeks removed) if you’ve trained well. I got a few PR’s last year in Nov/Dec months after NYCM just living off the extra speed I gained while training for the marathon. Either way, I predict that 5K PR is going down by summer’s end.

  8. jud-well maybe thats why i am doing *something* right by not racing my training runs/long runs? ;-)laminator-its all dependent on recovery…I didn’t recover too well from my first one…hoping this time around will be different!!As for that PR falling…well, the only other short race I had on the radar was Club Champs. However, there is another 5K on that same course on 8/4…however, would it really be smart to race a 5K 2 days after a 16-miler (even if I didnt run the day inbetween?)

  9. I agree with Scarinzic – you have to look at it as look how much better you are under worse conditions. Great job!

  10. Very exciting to see you put in a race time like this! Your confidence is back and your running is showing that. Congrats!

  11. Just discovered your blog, its great! I think you should just run the 5K this month. My girlfriend and I are training for Chicago, and we have at least one 5K race scheduled for every month. In fact, we are racing at 10M on Saturday and then a 5K on Sunday in lieu of a 9M pace run and a 12M long run. Just tweak a long run to a Thursday or Friday, keep the longer run before the long run, give yourself a day off before the race, and then crush your pr. It won’t derail your marathon training, I promise. Regardless, best of luck at the NYCM.

  12. thanks for stopping by…and LOL-too late, said 5K was yesterday and I did pass on it-it was a good move as I was still a little sore from my weekend’s long run. And besides, I have a 5-mile race coming up that I’d rather do well in (that PR is quite old as well!)Good luck with your training!!

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