You don't always get what you trained for. Quite frankly, that kind of sucks. As with many other things in life, race day is a gamble. It is EVERYTHING falling perfectly into place for that PR. More times than not, it doesn't happen. But, when it does, man that feels good!
My race plan derailed HARD, on Friday. Thursday, all day I felt really tired and run down. I figured it was because Thursday is my night shift and it always sucks, haha. I went to bed a little earlier, woke up a bit later, and took an unscheduled rest day. Well, half way to work on Friday, I knew something wasn't right. My head started pounding; it literally felt like my left eye was going to pop out; I was nauseous; my body all of a sudden felt weak; chills/sweats; and of course diarrhea - why not!? My first thought was, Damnit, is this going to impact Goldys Run? I had to make a new game plan. I rested and slept all day on Saturday. I tried to eat and drink as much as I could because there was no way I wasn't going to try and run.
I went to bed pretty early but it was tossy/turny sleep. When my alarm went on at 4:30 am I couldn't believe it was already morning. I reset it for 5 am. Surprisingly, that extra 30 minutes helped a lot!!
5 am: I rolled out of bed; let the dog out; fed the 2 cats and dog. Then had a little breakfast (PB toast with half a banana and 2 big glasses of water)
5:30 am: I had my race outfit picked out last night but of course by this morning I changed my mind. Should I wear shorts with a long sleeve; pants with a short sleeve; or shorts with a short sleeve? Which shorts with this top? Oh my goodness I make the struggle too real sometimes.
5:45 am: I decided to do my makeup while I decided, and then packed my race bag
6:00 am: I finally decided on an outfit. Race day is always a tough choice, haha. Gold @runinrabbit shorts and the Pace Right Coaching navy singlet. #perfect #asifiwasgoingtowearsomethingelse
6:15 am: Jason and I left in pursuit of the US Bank Stadium. Traffic was a mess!
6:55 am: We found a perfect spot to park that was super close and it only cost us $5! Then, it was time to find the bathrooms and pick up my run series jacket. I have been patiently waiting to get this jacket since I signed up for the series in December!! It is just as perfect as I envisioned!
7:30 am: Jason and I head out for a warm up. I let him finish his warm up alone and I turned back after a half mile. I only like to warm up for 1 mile before 5ks. We met back at the car before heading to the start line to give each other hugs and good luck wishes (and kisses) #iknowewwww !
7:55 am: 5k line up! I lined up in the 8 min/mile pace because last year lining up in the 9 min/mile corral it got way too congested!
8 am: TAKE OFF!
Mile 1 (8:31): I felt pretty good about the first mile. It didn't feel hard at all. There was a nice breeze and the sun was hiding making it nice and cool. I thought about all the tough intervals, tempos, and easy runs I did leading up to this race. It felt pretty good knowing and reflecting on all the hard work I did. Even though I was sick, it wasn't for nothing. Also, during this first mile I came upon someone who was playing there music without headphones which is so annoying AND her mapmyrun was telling her what her pace and distance was like every 15 seconds. So, I zoomed past her because that is my BIGGEST pet peeve. Please be courteous of others in your race; use headphones. If we wanted music we would have brought it.
Mile 2 (8:48): Started to lose speed here. I didn't realize it until I looked down at my watch...BIG mistake. That always psychs me out and makes me feel more tired than I probably am. The mental damage was already done so I just tried to speed up my pace by counting my steps and finding someone to pace with. By the end of this mile I was really feeling the fatigue set in. I told myself it is ok to back off; you don't feel well; just breathe. Later in the race, breathing was exactly the issue!
Mile 3 (8:35): About .2 into this mile, I had to stop and stretch my right quad. It was tightening up so badly and I am not entirely sure why. At about 2.65 I had to slow down to a walk. I was wheezing and snot was starting to drip, there was a huge cramp in my right rib. It is ok to listen to your body even when you're close to a PR. I walked for 20 seconds then blasted toward the finish as fast as I could handle. I told myself, "Don't worry, you're almost there and look how great you're doing with the flu!"
Final .1 (7:35): Coming into the finish, there is a heat wave as you enter the stadium. It is so fun because you are videoed and put up on the big screen! It was so exciting to see that finish line; I just flew toward it. What a great feeling to get to stop, haha!
My initial thought was "Damn woman, you were close to a PR". Second thought was, "Holy shit, you just course PR'd by almost 2 minutes!" Third thought "Oh hey, there's Jason!". I always try to look for the silver lining. This race was definitely not what I imagined 9 weeks ago when I began training but it turned out pretty great!
I used to be afraid of big races like this (there was over 9,000 runners; so amazing). I was afraid because I had thoughts of not being good enough to compete with such good runners. That was silly. I later learned that running has the most encouraging community. Your time, your pace, doesn't matter; everyone cheers you on no matter what. Now, I prefer these big races! You meet so many people and can meet up with friends. I got to meet up with Elaina Wild at Goldys; She is a Super speedy lady!
I am pretty pumped about how today turned out. Jason was there to remind me that whatever happens, happens and to just do my best. He always has such a positive outlook which has helped me greatly in becoming more positive myself. Jason came in 3rd today and I am super proud of him!
What I have learned from running is that your best one day may not be your best next week. You have to continue chasing your dreams because it doesn't just happen.
Running definitely will break your heart more than once; sew it back together and run on!
Patience; Persistence; Trusting the Process; Working Hard even when you don't want to!