Race Recap – Liga 5K – PR 21:18

I wasn’t wrong yesterday about not knowing how to run a 5K.

 
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My splits were all over the place.

 
KM 1 – 04:08 – Faster than I had planned, but feeling good.

 
KM 2 – 04:18 – What? I didn’t even realize I had slowed down that much.

 
KM 3 – 04:09 – A good split again, although my mind starts to wonder if I can hold this pace for longer. Thinking of a couple of Mizuno tops I saw at the booth and am planning to buy as a reward (or just because I want them) kept me pushing.

 
KM 4 – 04:24 – The “back” portion of a race is always the hardest, my legs are feeling it by now, and my mind is having an argument about ‘why do I need to suffer’ on the one hand, and ‘we are not quitting with a bit over 1 KM to go’. My slowest KM by far, bummer.

 
KM 5 – 04:14 – Telling myself that I’m taking a week off running after this race helps me push a little, besides I don’t want to make a fool of myself slowing down too much in the last KM.

 
Official Results:
Time: 21:18
Overall Place: 59 out of 266
Women’s Place: 2 out of 44
Category (30-39) place: 1 out of 15


 
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I am satisfied with my final time, it is very close to what I was expecting fitness wise.

 
My pacing was bad and I need to work on that, but I’m not surprised because I never really train at the 5K pace of this race, except for intervals. Intervals are a great way to improve speed, but they are too short to teach us how to actually keep a pace for longer periods. I should have done some tempo runs with a few KMs at 5K pace in advance.

 
I wasn’t expecting to run this race because we were supposed to be overseas, and when we canceled the trip and I realized I could run it, I was tired physically and mentally from previous races that I decided to take this race easy, and therefore didn’t train or taper for it.
My final time shows I didn’t run it easy after all, but the fact that I didn’t train for it still shows.

 
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This being my first 5K, it was a good experience for future races. A few things I did differently than for longer races, which actually worked out great:

 
Warm up: I tried doing strides at the end of a 3K/2M warm up, and I think this really helped me run fast from the start of the race. Usually it takes me a while to get my legs to move fast enough to reach goal race pace, not today.

 
Taking a GU in advance: I’ve been taking a gel before races, just a few minutes before start time. This seemed to make sense for longer races, where I’d need the extra energy to last longer into the race. I knew the 5K would take less than 23 minutes, so I figured I could eat the GU half an hour before the race, and see if it made a difference. I really think it did, more time to digest it before the race, and no side pain whatsoever, which I did get in past races.

 
Mind games: Every race makes me mentally stronger. I still have a long way to go, somehow on the 2nd half of the race I start to consider slowing down, even DNFing, it becomes harder for me to push through. Although my body is getting tired by that point, I can feel it’s more mental than anything. I hate to think that I’m weak, but then I’m still racing, and I will get stronger.

 
Peeing: This is not a new thing, but I went to the porta-potties four times before the race, about 20 minutes apart, the last time being 3 minutes before start time (the perks of small races). This was perfect to avoid that horrible feeling of having to pee while running. I had 2 big glasses of water and 2 cups of coffee before I left home, so going to the bathroom regularly helped take it all out.

 

 
About the Mizuno tops I was thinking of during the 3rd KM, I saw these cute tanks that I wanted to buy, the fabric is so light, the cut is awesome, they are sleeveless which I love, just perfect.
I couldn’t buy them before the race because there was a problem with their credit card machine, but I bought 2 after the race, same model, 2 different colors.

 
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I had to rush home right after the race because my son was celebrating his birthday at his kindergarten today (actual birthday was 2 weeks ago, and although the party is only for the class children without the parents, I still wanted to take him myself (usually my husband takes him on Fridays and I do my long run).

 
Overall this was a nice, relaxed, fun, small race. Great way to start the weekend.

 
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That promise my mind made my body about not running again for a week, so not needed. I am not sore at all, and although I had postponed my Friday’s long run to next Wednesday, I will be doing it tomorrow. Works much better for me to do it on a weekend day than on a week day, and I feel perfectly fine. Definitely makes me wonder if I could have run harder.

 
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