Yesterday morning I ran the =PR= Hoofin' It 5k. This race was not part of the trophy series but I figured it would be a good September race. Potomac River Running has recently opened a new store that is a bit closer to my house and the race was near there. It was also the same course as the 4th of July race which I have run 3 times now.
All week there was rain in the weather forecast. Luckily the rain held off until much later in the afternoon. It was a cool morning but pretty much perfect for running. We got to the race site early and saw no indication that there was even going to be a race….no cones, no police, no people. I was a little bit concerned. We decided to head over to the main square in the shopping center and there we found some action.
The race was sponsored by Chick-fil-a and they brought a bunch of cows.
Here I am before the race…
The race was much smaller than the 4th of July races I have done. Way fewer people. As I headed to the starting corral I decided to start near the front. People tend to stop and walk very early on in races like this and I prefer not to trip over someone in the first quarter mile when they suddenly stop.
I started fast….
And as I rounded the first corner I saw the official race photographer…
I ran the first mile entirely too fast despite trying to slow down. Between this and the hills in the second mile I slowed down quite a bit. By the third mile I was pretty tired and knew that I had started much to fast. My good pace was just melting away. I knew I would hit my back up goal though…which is pretty good because that is much faster than I have been running.
My buddy was able to walk over to mile 2.5 to cheer me on. He's so sweet!
As I made it through the last couple of turns I knew I was close to the finish and tried to pick it up a bit. My buddy was standing near the finish line right around the point that I dug deep for one final kick.
The race photographer was waiting for me at the finish line and caught me huffing and puffing to the end.
I don't seem to have the same smile that I started with. I was really kicking myself for starting too fast yet again. I'm convinced I need to run the first mile with some extra weight so that I slow down and have some strength left for the rest of the race. I think if I was more consistent I might do better overall. I'm really going to start focusing on that in training.
Chick-fil-a provided chicken sandwiches and cookies at the end of the race. I think that is a bit much for a 5k but ended up eating the sandwich on the way home and then the cookie much later in the day. I also had a banana and a bottle of water….gotta keep it healthy somehow!
Overall, it was a good race. My pace turned out to be better than I initially thought….I didn't really look at my watch at the end. The last average pace I had seen on the course was higher than the one that I finished with so I definitely sped up at the end. The race was well organized. The volunteers were nice and were all cheering us on with cowbells. =PR= puts on a good race. I enjoy running these smaller races where parking is easy, the race starts on time, and everyone is out there to have fun and support each other.