I love small little neighborhood runs that aren't swarmed by the masses ... and that is exactly what we got on Sunday. My friend Kim lives in East Boston and this was the inaugural run for one of the schools in her neighborhood.
Of course, the weather didn't cooperate and it was overcast and rainy, but that didn't hold us back. :P C'mon, Kim, the wife and I are seasoned race participants now and are ready for any conditions... :P
We got there in enough time to check out the kids' Fun Run. It was freakin' adorable. But, I give these kids credit - I couldn't run half as far as they do now. The kids were cute and so happy to be out there running ... it gives me hope for the next generation!! I wish I had half their enthusiasm for running when I was their age.
Of course I had to find someone to snap the mandatory pre-race pic ;)
After this we scooted over to the Start Line and got in position. Now, there wasn't a microphone and I don't know my way around the neighborhood so when they were yelling out the directions for the race - it sounded like Charlie Brown's teacher. I was just content in knowing I am NEVER the fastest person on the course so I figured there would always be at least one person in front of me to follow if I got lost.
They hit the buzzer and we were off.
It was so nice to run through an unknown neighborhood in Boston ... checking out the sites, smells and nuances of a new location.
Of course my Runkeeper got messed up JUST as I left the Start Line so that was out for trying to keep my pace. So instead, I just pushed myself to run as hard as I could the whole race.
Mile One seemed to take forever. Besides the Runkeeper messing up in the beginning, I also had some wardrobe malfunctions - darn pants wouldn't stay up, my armband kept sliding down and I put my headphones in the wrong ears. Blurgh! I know those things are not going to make the world stop turning, but it threw off my rhythm at the beginning of the race.
Thankfully by the time I saw the Mile One marker, I had composed myself.
By Mile Two, I was in the zone and was at about a 7:30 pace. I took a moment during that mile to be thankful for how far I have come in my running and to really be proud of my accomplishments...
As soon as I saw the Mile Two marker, I refocused on the running. :P And promptly took a wrong turn in the race. Yup, that girl! Thankfully the two women behind me caught me before I got too far off course. Thanks again ladies! :)
I turned the corner to see the Finish Line down the road and felt like it kept moving back as I ran forward. Maybe it was all the racing I had done in May catching up to me, but I felt tired.
Thankfully I finally crossed the Finish Line and just tried to get my breathing back under control. Not sure if it was the pollen or what that was throwing off my breathing, but it took longer than usual to get it back to normal.
I ended up finishing in 23:10 (7:28 min/mile pace) ... I was 15th out of 74 overall and second out of 19 in my division. Woo!!
After the race, we went over to Kim's house to check out her roof deck. We had planned to hang up there for awhile, but Mother Nature had different plans.
I realized that the PJK 5k was my 25th road race in the one year I have been cleared to run after major back surgery in January 2011.
Between June 5, 2011 and today: I have run 25 road races (17 5ks, 3 8ks, 2 10ks, 1 10-Miler & 2 Half Marathons) and taken over 6 minutes off my 5k time...
June 5, 2011 - Run For The Zoo 5k - 29:20 (172.4 lbs) June 3, 2012 - PJK 5k - unofficial 23:10 (154.8 lbs)
Wow! I can't believe how far I have come in just on year. It really is true that if you believe ... you can achieve!
My next race is the Boston Athletic Association 10k on Sunday, June 24!