During one of my races last year, Rob mentioned the Santa Rotary Run. As I planned my 2019 schedule, it was how I wanted to end my year.
After doing packet pickup Saturday morning, we hung out and then did a brief warm up. While we tried to seed ourselves ahead of all the walkers/strollers, we didn’t succeed. As a result, we ran faster than the planned pace during the first quarter mile to get around traffic.
Once we cleared the big throngs of walkers, we were able to settle into a good pace. There were a couple of spots before the aid station (halfway point) where I wanted to walk. But because of Natalie’s help with pacing and breathing, I was able to push through. I was able to ‘reset’ at the aid station and refocused on the second half.
Typically by this point in a 5K, I’m headed towards a walk/run finish. It will start out decently (say 6/1) and slowly decline as we head towards the finish. In this race, because of her help, I didn’t really have to walk until about 2.5mi. After that point, I was able to run for about a half mile, walk for 30 seconds, and then finish strong.
This was an amazingly fun race and a great way to end the 2019 season! I will have much more to say about the season as a whole in the next blog. Thanks to Natalie for guiding for me, and to Achilles Chicago for all their support!
“Just when I thought I was out… they pull me back in.” (Al Pacino)
After the Chicago Monster Deah Half Marathon, I thought that my 2016 season was over. Time to go from race preparation to off-season work and start focusing on 2017. And then I get an invitation to run the Naperville Noon Lions Turkey Trot. This is a great race, and a great way to start Thanksgiving, so I naturally said yes.
So in that 4-5 week period between the Half Marathon and Turkey Trot, I tried to keep a consistent running schedule. While it wasn’t perfect, it did help tremendously on race day. As you’ve probably realized by now if you’ve been rading constantly, running isn’t my strongest suit. And in 2016, with a few exceptions, my runs have been more of run/walks.
But with the more consistent training, I felt really good going into the 5K race Thanksgiving morning with my guides (Ralph and Terri Hayes). And that feeling turned into reality! It wasn’t a PR, but it was by far my best 5K. In the past, it’s typically been a 4/1 or 5/1 interval at the start, with it decreasing later in the race as I got tired. During the Turkey Trot, I only stopped and walked 4 times. Two of these were to talk off layers, and the other two were for about a minute (at about 2 mi and about 2.75 mi) to catch my breath.
While this is a great benchmark for the effort, it’s not an endpoint. Before camp in January, I need to be at a comfortable and consistent 5 miles. Much more to do, and I’m sure there will be a lot of cold runs. Please see my next blog entry for more on the camp.