Today was my running club’s annual 5 mile run. We are only allowed to take part once in the year we join, so I wanted to do this even though I didn’t feel ready after my broken toe and laser eye surgery.
It was an afternoon run in a village just outside my town. I was going to cycle over, but it was pouring with rain and I didn’t fancy getting cold and wet before running. But I need to learn to warm up properly before a run like this.
It was great to be wearing my running club t-shirt and having other new members also running with me and as the marshals cheering us on.
I will admit this was the hardest run I’ve done in a while, but I think that was because I was not training for it before hand. The first mile went okay, just a lot of people over taking me. I knew this would be my warm up mile so I kept steady on the flat part of the course. I reached the 1 mile marker and knew it was going to be a hard run.
By the 2 mile marker I was in last place and had the cyclist riding with me. It was disheartening as I have never been last before, close to last, but not last. I tried not to think about it and kept going knowing my aim was to run the whole way and finish, no matter how slow I did it. The water station came when needed just after the half way point. I was struggling as the sun had decided to come out and it got very warm. I kept going but was struggling with my left knee, not my toe at all. I had to stop quickly to loosen my shoe (thank heaven for elastic laces), but got going again. This eased by knee as I came to the hill.
The 4th mile felt like it took forever! My run club friend on the bike kept me going by reminding me about my breathing and using my arms. Also about letting gravity help me out when going down hill. Finally the 4 mile marker arrived and I could see the marshall I knew was on the top of the hill. Why does the photographer always pick the hill to take race photos?
I knew then I was on the last mile and it was all down hill. My pace picked up and I relaxed into the decent. I came back onto the field and finished feeling better than probably any point on the way round.
My split was a bit weird, but that 4th mile definitely felt longer as it was slower! I want to work to a 11:30 pace for my half marathon so I’m happy that even after a month off I can still run 5 miles at at average pace of 11:28, so I can build on this and work towards October feeling more confident I can do it.Overall the course was a nice loop around the country, sticking to low traffic roads. I came in at 57:14 on my app, but my race time was 57:03. This was slower than my last 5 mile run event, but I am happy that I got in under an hour. It was hard and I feel I pushed myself. I also know I want to improve and need to review my plan to do so.