Wednesday, May 30, 2012

His Chick-Fil-A 5K

        Each year in May there is a 5km run/walk in Newport News. Part of the appeal of the race, for us at least, is that there is a free Chick-Fil-A chicken sandwich at the end. Plus the T-Shirt is always good to add to my collection. This was Amanda and my second time at the event and we both had goals to beat. Amanda will tell more about her goals in her post.

         My goal was to complete the event in under 26 minutes. I have been training throughout the year to try and improve my time and it seemed like I would never beat my time of 26min 5sec that I set back a few months ago. Last weekend on my final training 5k, I beat 26 minutes but due to a glitch in my gps I am not sure of my actual time. I hoped that since I beat 26 minutes last week, and the atmosphere of the race would allow me to crack the 26 minute barrier again and that it wasn't a one time thing.

     I started the race in the middle of the first group of runners. My goal was to try and keep an 8 minute mile pace so I would finish somewhere around 25-26 minutes. As with my training I ran with my bike GPS so I could gauge if I was running too fast and risk tanking out too fast. I did get stuck behind some slower runners at  the start but after the first half mile I was in a good spot and found a good rhythm.

    I completed mile one at 7:50 which I was happy with and figured if this pace continues I would be in good shape. Soon afterwards I saw the leaders coming back and they were flying. After that I went back into my zone and kept going. I try to have the mindset that I am racing myself and the clock and not worry about what other people are doing. This is important to me as if I focus on who can run quicker I may try to keep up and run out of stamina before the finish line. I kept a good pace for mile two and it was just under 8 minutes.

   At this point I was quite happy with how I was pacing myself. I was tired but was well within my goal time even if I slowed down some in the last mile. I saw Amanda and Jill and they were doing great, a little later Jenn and Andy (my sis-in-law and bro-in-law), and then Mr. T and Mrs. T (Amanda's parents). They all looked happy and were doing well in their walks. The last half mile seemed to take forever, probably due to the heat and I kept checking my gps to make sure I wasn't dropping off the pace too much. I wanted to stop and walk but I knew I needed to push on and beat my goal. Thankfully the last few hundred yards went quick and I cruised around the corner and saw the finish line and the clock saying 25:00. I knew then that it would be under 26 minutes and I was ecstatic. My official time was 25:20 which was well under my goal. I grabbed a quick drink and then headed back out to find the others and walk a bit with each of them.

   I had a great time at the event and hope that next year I can do even better. Maybe even a 23-24 minute finish time? Its a big goal but who knows, its not an impossible goal.

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