Tag Archives: 10K

Race Recap: My First 10K!

12 Mar

This weekend was exciting for many reasons!  First, it was Adam’s birthday.  And for those that know me, they know birthdays are big!!  I absolutely love celebrating birthdays.  I threw Adam a surprise party with a lot of helpers, and we had a wonderful time.  I also had a very dear friend visiting this weekend making it even more special.  The last reason this weekend was so exciting: I ran my first 10K!

Had you asked me last Friday morning if I thought I’d be running a race this weekend I would’ve had a resounding “um no, I have a long run” in response.  But my what an afternoon can change!  I went out to lunch with a few co-workers and one of them shared a bit about their race this weekend: a 10K race as a part of the training series for the Mini-Marathon.  It was just .8 miles shorter than my long run planned.  And, conveniently the start/finish line were only about a mile from my apartment.  The race started at 8 am and I was planning on getting my long run (7 miles) started at 7:30 am.  Can you say destiny?  I asked a few more questions and soon I was sold!

That afternoon I signed up and paid the 12 dollar fee.  And soon after registering the nerves started.  That little flurry in my stomach was the unwelcome familiar pre-race feeling. My last Indy Mini was a disaster in terms of nerves.  I was so nervous. So nervous that I made myself sick – I had a stomachache the entire race and burst into tears at the end of it; not pretty.  I hadn’t trained well enough to put that much pressure on myself. I desperately wanted to do well: it was Adam’s first race and I wanted to help him get to a sub 2-hour time.  Instead, he ended up practically dragging me to the finish line in 2 hours and 6 minutes by some miracle because I had managed to give myself montezuma’s revenge.  Ever since this race I’ve had a complex of sorts about running (racing really).  But I knew doing this 10K would help me relax about racing and get back into the swing of things.  The rest of the day I worked tirelessly to take my mind off the race.


All signed up: My long run officially turned into a race!

Saturday morning my alarm went off and my stomach wasn’t as bad as I had anticipated.  I changed clothes (a balmy 34 degrees), ate half a bagel (daring, I know), and took a few puffs of my albuterol (I have asthma).  My plan was to run the extra mile I needed before the race just to get it over with. I took off toward the start line with heavy legs.  They felt pretty tired so I just mentally told myself to relax: this was for training purposes only!  My timing was just about perfect: 1.2 miles to reach the start.  I slowed, stretched, and just tried to keep warm until the start of the race.

My least favorite part of races: the very beginning.  Well… probably the first mile or two of a race.  I know I’m not alone in this sentiment but man, I really don’t enjoy it.  A couple reasons: my strategy is to finish strong and fast.  Therefore, my initial pace is somewhat slow and steady.  I tend to get passed in the first mile or two and then pass those same people at the end (not all of them – I wish ;)).  As usual, I got somewhat discouraged during the first part.  I had to remind myself continuously that I had a strategy and that I know my body.  I had to focus on my goals and ignore others around me.  Well, I’m glad I listened to myself.  Around mile 4 I started really picking up my pace and found myself in my favorite position: “hunter”.  By mile 5.5 I felt like I was flying.  I felt strong and confident.  Mile 5.8 I started having some issues: I had a major side cramp.  I kept up my pace as best I could and held strong to the finish line.

Previous to this race my fastest training run to date was averaged 8:38 for 3 miles.  This run happened 2 weeks ago and blew my previous 9:04 average at 4 miles, out of the water.  I was elated at 8:38 – I felt like I was king of the world!  All day I floated on a cloud: maybe someday I can get over my asthma and be fast!  During this race I thought it was possible to average 8:30 – I just have been feeling fast lately and my breathing has been giving me less trouble.  Well – I came in faster than 8:30 miles.  I came into the finish uncomfortable with a side cramp, but delighted at my time: 50:36. That’s an average pace of 8:09! Just last year I was happy when my training runs came in under 10 minutes!  I couldn’t believe it.  I hugged Adam and my friend Katie at the end of the race.  They had walked over to watch me finish and both shared in my excitement and shock.


Super sweaty but happy!

This 10K not only gave me confidence because my race anxiety before the run was greatly reduced, but I also had a fantastic time!  What a feeling!  I’m hoping to sign up for more “short” races like this one – I’m thinking the more I race the less nerves I will experience before the race.

Do you experience nerves before races?  What have you done to stay calm and reduce race-day anxiety?