It’s a beautiful Saturday in Charlotte. The sun is shining and I’m having a great day full of my favorite things – running, yoga, Starbucks, farmers market, cooking and Georgia football.
I set a new 5K PR (which admittedly was not difficult given that it was only my second 5K ever). I ran my first 5K (also my first road race ever) when I was 19 and finished in 29:35. Today was a bit of an improvement. Here’s how it went down.
Friday night carb load. The fact that it’s not necessary to carb load for a 5K is beside the point, it was a great excuse to eat pasta and bread…and drink wine! We bailed on the Greek festival in favor of a quiet night at home. I made a baked pasta with marinara, fresh mozz and basil. Salad on the side.
Pre-race tradition, no matter the distance. Toast with almond butter, honey, banana and a sprinkle of cinnamon with black coffee to wash it down.
The Big Red Shoes 5K was a really small race (only 150ish runners) but in my favorite running neighborhood in town. The race benefited the Ronald McDonald House which is one of my favorite non-profits. I actually used to serve on the junior board of RMH when we lived in Birmingham.
I arrived at the race a few minutes early so that I could get a quick jog in to get my legs warmed up. I knew there was no way that I could go from zero to “balls to the wall” without a warm-up. I did an easy mile at around a 9-minute pace.
My stretch goal was sub-24:00 but I had no idea if it was even remotely possible. We lined up at the start and I pretty much took off in a sprint. I decided to throw pacing myself out of the window and run as fast and hard as I could for as long as possible. 5Ks are a different animal than longer distances because they’re so short. It’s hard to know how much to save in the tank.
Mile 1 – 7:07. Surprisingly easy but I thought there was no way I could sustain that.
Mile 2 – 7:27. Flew past the water stop without even thinking about taking a break. Still feeling good. Focusing on controlling my breath.
Mile 3 – 7:44. Steady up hill for the first half of the mile. This is where things got very mentally tough and I wondered why oh why I ate a big breakfast right before sprinting a 5K but I just kept pushing and tried not to let my pace get above 8:00.
Last .1 – 0:24. Sprint. Sprint. Sprint. Die.
FINAL TIME: 22:44. Where did that come from!!!??? I was thrilled. 18th overall, 8th in my age group.
Post-race photo opp with Lululemon friends Lauren and Helen who also ran the race.
The best part about the race was that the Lululemon Salutation Nation was immediately after. My legs where in serious need of a good stretch.
It was an amazing day for an outdoor practice. I loved being a part of the nationwide neverending om! It was really cool to think that yogis in cities all over the country were practicing at the same time!
After practice I hit Starbucks, the farmers market and grocery and then came home and made this lunch. Egg scramble with two eggs, sauteed squash, sundried tomatoes, spinach, smoked gouda and basil over a sliced heirloom tomato with a NC mountain apple.
We’re having friends over for the UGA/USC game so I’m off to finish cleaning and cooking. Happy Saturday!