April 10th, 2011

Today was the Seahawks 12k Run at the Renton Landing. I got down there around 8 to make sure I had plenty of time to get stretched and shake the nerves. The race started at 9am and my goal was to run the race in under 1 hour and 30 minutes. Until today my longest run had been 4 miles. I knew I’d make it to 5 easy but running 7.5 was really intimidating. 

Now that I’ve been running for almost a year I’ve learned that it takes me about 1 mile before my head really gets into the run. Today when I passed the 1 mile marker I was still trying to find my stride. When I got to mile marker two, there were already people running back toward the finish line. This made me feel really nervous that I was running really slow. How could someone run 4 miles when I’d only done two. Well I guess it shouldn’t come as a shock, there are people out there that run a 5 minute mile, but still, it made me doubt myself a bit. Then between mile 2 and 3 a family friend of mine ran past me going the other direction. She was one of the first women running back toward the finish line.

When I finally reached the halfway mark at the Seahawks Training Facility, I decided to take off my knee straps to see if I could run faster having more mobility. Still not sure if this was a good or bad decision, but I told myself that if my knees were bothering me by mile 5, I’d walk the rest of the race. As I approached the 4.5 mile marker I had a new surge of energy from the fact that my brother’s song, “Sandstorm,” by Darude came on Pandora. Bryan was being my cheerleader today in my parent’s absence and would be waiting at the finish line for me hopefully.

I stopped at mile 6 to send a text to Bryan to let him know I was about a mile out. Then I ran as hard and fast as I could with the little energy I had left. With the Landing in sight I powered through and finished the race at 1 hour, 24 minutes and a few seconds. I had been tracking my route on my cell phone’s cardio trainer and it said that we ran 8.75 miles not 7.5 miles. So no I’m confused if the race was a true 12K or if it was longer. Bryan was at the finish line and was able to watch me cross over the blue time chip mats. As I crossed the finish line, I heard someone call my name. It was one of my new Crossfit friends. It was great to see a familiar face and nice to have someone else cheering for me too.

After I got home and iced my knees, I have come to the realization that I have no desire to run races longer than this one. This distance was definitely a challenge for me. I like pushing myself to the limits, but I’m stubborn, and even if my body says no, my mind always says keep going. This is how people get injured. I know I can do more, but from now on I’m going to stick to 10k’s or less.

Today was the first time I’ve run where my mind just wasn’t in it. Even after 7.5 miles I never really enjoyed this race. My brain was running a mile a minute and never stopped. I train with Pandora, but am thinking that this caused my brain to wander. Is it possible that the energy and adrenaline of the race world is blocked out when I close myself off to the sounds and open myself to music? Or is my enthusiasm for this year’s goal in a slump, or dying? I still have 8 more races to get through this year so I’m hoping its just the music and not my enthusiasm.

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~ by jennl4 on April 11, 2011.

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