I haven't run a 5K without a child by my side for a few years, so when a friend mentioned a small, evening, local 5K that I've been curious about (Crystal City 5K Fridays), Ed and I decided to go for it. We totally missed my friend at the start - but eventually found her afterwards, and she'd found another friend, too. That's a win, overall, since the race inspired us to go have dinner and beers afterwards. Even though we were a bit sweaty, we ate outside and were in a sports bar after that, so it wasn't too gross.
There were no age group awards, but that didn't stop me from looking up my group (40 -44) and then bragging on facebook that I won it! (24:14). The race was a bit bizarre at the start because right as the starting bell chimed, I got a call from Helen and Connor. Ed and I stepped off the course, fielded the call (TV troubles at home) and then hopped back onto the course and officially started. This meant we started behind EVERYONE! I set an immediate goal to not get beaten by any running dogs (goal met).
We wove in and out of other runners for the first mile, found a relatively clear space at mile 2, and then cruised into the finish. Ed beat me by 7 seconds. I recovered a lot faster than he did, so there's some solace in that. Still - although he will say he didn't think I was trying, let the record note that I was trying, and felt like I was going all out.
While it is very empowering to pass a bunch of people (I was passed by 2 - Ed and another guy), it's also pretty tedious to be running around people for such a significant part of the race. Lesson learned - tell the kids no TV when we're away (kidding!).
On Sunday morning, my friend came back from the Netherlands and ran the GW Parkway Classic 10 miler. I have never signed up for this race before, because it is a huge time sink. You must be at the busses to get to the start by 6:30 (and past runners urged 6:15) and then after being bussed to the start, you stand around for over an hour waiting for the race to begin (8:00). Normally, I would've been thinking about how I could've run 10 miles, showered and had a cup of coffee before the race started - but today was all joy. A large group of friends had gathered to run together - and we even stopped and took photos at a scenic overlook.
Also, because I have never run a 10 miler, I automatically got a PR! (1:24:34). All of my miles were faster than 9:00, and the last two miles were a pretty good clip faster than the others. During the race, I felt tired, but after the race, it took about 3 minutes to feel fully recovered. Clearly, I need to figure out how to work harder during the race.
Photos to come when my friend posts them.