My first 5K

Well, I did it. A friend of mine put a bug in my ear a couple of months ago about racing in the Run for Hospice 5K last Saturday morning and I actually followed through with it. It was a cold morning as the race started at 9:00 a.m. and I was not thrilled with the course. The hill in the first mile was, shall we say, formidable and it was intimidating to a lot of people including me. At any rate I was hoping to get a time around 30 minutes as I am generally running a 10-minute mile when I run during the week.

I started out pretty fast (given the hill) and recorded a 9:16 first mile. I was hoping to get a 9:30 to 10:00 so that I would have something left at the end and that I wouldn't be walking past the finish line. The course curled around and the second mile was almost all down hill and I held back a bit pacing myself behind this bald guy that looked to be substantially older than me. My friend was way ahead of me so I was on my own. Well, that guy got a little slow for me so I passed him before the second-mile mark and was around the 18:15 mark at that point. "OK, this is good," I thought because I could run the remaining mile and change at 10 minutes and still get under the 30 minutes I was hoping to record. I saw some people walking and, though it looked really good and I felt like I was going to die, I resisted the temptation to walk with them.

Well, at the three-mile mark I got some surprising news. I was right around 26:15 and I was thinking that 28 minutes was a real possibility. I thought that I would slow down a bit in the third mile but it looked like I was actually getting a tad faster. Well, I rounded the corner to the finish line and I recorded an (official) time of 27:29 which is an 8:52 mile. That was much better than I expected as I thought, maybe, I would get a 9:30 mile on a good day. It turns out that I underestimated my abilities a bit. My friend was hoping for an 8:30 mile and he turned in an 8:15 so we both had decent runs.

Overall it was well worth doing if for nothing else than to see how hard I could push myself. I will definitely be doing it again.


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