Saturday, February 23, 2008

I Bested My Run Time in the DODEA 5K

Finally! I ran the DODEA 5K yesterday in 28 minutes and 57 seconds so I came under 29 minutes in my year-long quest to run a sub-25:00 5K. It's so humbling to remember that at one time I used to run 6:15 splits....I just don't enjoy the pain (nor the dry heaving) at the finish line. Despite the conditioning runs I did in the week leading up to this race, I was fatigued for the rest of the day.

I was only passed by one jog stroller this time and, quite frankly, he would have crushed me easily without the jog stroller.

I have to tip my hat to Deb Bute, though. She caught up with me at the turn-around point at Alupang Beach Towers and I vowed I would not be passed by another jog stroller for the rest of the race. So I sprinted a little, then settled into a higher race groove. She caught up to me and I had to sprint once more. For sure, I thought I had her now because she was shoving the stroller ahead and trying to get some ease---ah, ha! weakness! Alas, a little later I heard her daughter cheering her on and looked back to see she was gaining on me again. No. More. Jog. Strollers. I sprinted for a while this time and finished ahead of her.

Richard A Lovett advised in the Jan/Feb 2008 issue of Running Times, "[W]hen you pass people, pass in a manner that indicates you expect them to remain passed." But he also recommended against starting out too fast. I actually started out faster than I normally run this race and that is because I knew I would have enough energy to finish---I needed to push myself and even if I slowed down, I would still be running faster than I would if I started out at my usual rate. This article from Runner's World explains my rationale and the research that supports it.

Drew was tired and didn't come near his personal best of 25:41. He was still satisfied. He's always a "glass-half-full" type kid and we are so blessed to have him. I am still trying to talk Anna into running with us and I might have her with this argument: "You don't play tennis to get in shape; you get in shape to play tennis."

JFK High School is sponsoring a 5K next weekend and it will probably be hilly. The Guam Running Club is sponsoring its Guam Hafa Marathon the same day. Decisions, I run the tried-and-true 5K or push myself for the 13.1 miles? No problems deciding on races for the following weekend, though, because that is a flat course to support the American Red Cross.

We finished up the day with more activities: I supervised taking blood pressures at our health display at the NEX in support of American Heart Month. Anna and Drew went to tennis lessons, this time at the Tiyan Tennis Courts because of the ongoing competition at the Tennis Center, and we saw "We are the Pirates Who Don't Do Anything," at the base theatre. What a great movie! It started off slowly, though, and I was very concerned that this movie was not up to standards, but it completely redeemed itself after the slow start. We had a nice family discussion on the short car ride home.