St. Patrick’s Day 5k – March 12

Summary – St. Patrick’s Day 5K, March 12th
 22:07, 2nd in AG, 10th of 278 females

Mile 1    7:01
Mile 2   7:24
Mile 3   7:11
Mile .1   0:31

PR by 14 seconds.
Temp: 34 degrees, 6 mph wind @1pm

PRE-RACE
So pumped for the new uniforms!!!! Love the colors + first time wearing the Saucony split shorts and the arm sleeves from Saucony.  Absolutely loved both + super excited to represent Often Running and Saucony.  Thanks, Mitch, Often Running, and Saucony for equipping us with awesome gear!!!!

Physically- had a week where I was feeling off, tight quad mid week from the weekend before, blah + lethargic, etc.  
Mentally- I could write a book on my mental state going into Sunday.  Lo-hi-lo-hi.  I will save you all of the emotional details… but by Saturday afternoon I got myself to a *bit* of a better place and tried to take the pressure off (thanks Clint + Rachel).  I kept thinking of two things… Scott Jurek’s “Sometimes You Just Do Things”.  That’s what I was going to try to do – fight thru the heavy legs and lethargy and just hang in.  And all of that, coupled with the belief that this race doesn’t define me, my identity is not rooted in running or this specific race today.  I always try to have ONE attainable goal and the rest are challenge and stretch goals.  I decided that I shouldn’t have a problem setting a course PR, since I’ve only raced this 5k a couple of times and best was 23:58.  The rest of the goals I had for the day… well, I didn’t have any idea where they would net out.  
Plan: Try to mimic everything from Frosty 5k 6 weeks ago.  Nutrition, fuel, prep.  2m WU, first race mile target between 7-7:10.Thanks, Gary, for getting there early + getting us an area.  Warmed up for 2 miles in lots of layers and felt good about wearing the shorts + tank for the race.  Legs felt a bit heavy still on the warm up, so, well, sometimes you just do things.  One last potty break before heading to the start… had a bit of a portapotty incident, which I could have cried about, but honestly just laughed and then Amber laughed with me (NOT AT ME!).  Team pic and then some strides at the line.  Could not be MORE THRILLED for Rachel to courageously go after her goals and push Gabey man. Loved lining up behind them. Definitely my fav part of the day was her race… but I won’t scoop her race report 🙂

RACE 
Felt fast off the line but honestly I couldn’t tell if that was bc of my body or reality. I tried to chill out… looked at my watch a few times but it kept bouncing from 6:20-7:40 for the pace. Oh crap.  There were some ECO racers around me all talking and apparently they were having the same Garmin issue, sharing what their garmin was reporting.  Well… guess I will just WING IT and wait for that first mile mark and see where I’m at.  At the half mile area where you turn off Lincoln, I was already feeling like I was racing.  Working. Having to dig.  My fam was there cheering (even my dog!), and so that was a nice surprise!  Hit the one mile mark and it was 7:01.  COME ON!  I’m not going to be able to keep this up!  I’m already in some pain + misery.

I thought I would slow down a smidge and get some consistent breaths… at this point was thinking I would slow down to a 7:10-7:15 pace for mile 2.  And see if I could hold on and not totally die for mile 3.  Well… mile 2 was tough. Hit the turn around, and like Carol said, it was great to see where everyone was and how everyone was doing in the race. BAM! Often Running Racing Team was definitely reppin’!  I felt like I was really working hard… nothing was coming easy.  At 2.4 I was toast.  SO HOT. Dying. Debated for awhile about taking off my gloves. But then just thought it would slow me down, something would happen in that process. Then finally said that’s it, I’m taking off my gloves and shoving them in my waist or sport bra or something. I can’t go on with gloves. I will die a death of hot hands in a 5k. Off come the gloves… and yes, in the attempt to stash them, I DROPPED A GLOVE.  NOOOOOOO.  I love these gloves. These are nice gloves. They are wonderful saucony lightweight yet warm gloves.  I didn’t realize it for a few strides, then turned around and looked in horror and saw it back there.  NOOOOOOOO. What do I do? I kept going. With guilt + agony, I kept going.  And then I put the other glove in someone’s yard to mark my glove location for future retrieval.  Glove 1 is 20 yards west of Glove 2.  Glove 2 is at the house with the mailbox right by the road on Croxton. I can do this. I can get the gloves back. Life is not over. Focus. Forget the gloves.  There will be other gloves.  MITCH WONT KICK ME OFF THE TEAM FOR LOSING MY GLOVES.
So that was mile 2, at 7:24 + with cooler hands. Mile 3…. I’m telling myself, “okay mama, you can do anything for ten minutes.  Just go. Lift those legs with the bricks holding them down. Pump those arms. Breathe. Do not stop. Do not stop”. I have little memory of mile 3, other than the AWESOME people cheering – my fam, Mike, Tanya, Erin, were all out there — and have the pics to prove it. Prove ALL OF IT.  I never saw mile 3 split come in on my Garmin, but when I turned the last corner onto Lincoln, I just gave it all the gas I had left –thinking “JUST END THIS”. 🙂  That last stretch to the finish lasts forevs. Seriously forevs. My overall time was telling me that I could possibly end this faster than Frosty.
 What? Wow! How? I was trying to not die off and not get passed.  Finished that race and literally left it all out there.  Hardest I have ever worked in a race that I can remember.  PR by 14 seconds, coming in at 22:07.

POST RACE
Found the team after the race and loved hearing how everyone did.  Found my fam and went inside for some dry clothes + food. Learned that I also placed 2nd in my age group!!  So fun to be surrounded by so many local friends that came out to run.  Enjoyed visiting with Carol and her niece Kylee who also did awesome!  
And also kept hearing all of the comments and seeing the pics people snapped of my “race face”.  I mean mugged that entire 5k.  Every single pic.
I kept delaying my cool down thinking they would start awards.  That was so fun at the last 5k, to see all of the OR uniformed racers go up and represent the store + Saucony.  Seriously was so motivating for me to see that in Peoria.  Finally, Rachel and I decided to go cool down before we tightened up even further. ANNNNND we missed awards.  I was so bummed!

WHAT I LEARNED 

  • Take the pressure off and chill out.  It’s one race. It’s a glove.
  • So much of racing really is mental.  I can’t do it without the fitness level… but my mind can overcome adversity.
  • I didn’t freeze in shorts + 36 degrees!   


Even though the race was HARD, the entire event was fun to be in Often Running’s backyward, racing with a ton of people I admire and have been chasing for awhile.  So grateful for this group + opportunity. Thanks again, Mitch + Often Running + Saucony! 

Holly-Rae
P.S. Both gloves were successfully recovered.
hr mean mug st pats
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