I’m not going to do well, so what’s the point?
Why should I spend $30 to run a slow 3.1 miles when I can run further than that for free anywhere I want?
I had to remind myself that there are reasons to run a local 5k that have nothing to do with PRs or placing:
They’re a great way to celebrate (in this case, the Fourth of July).
The race fee usually goes to charity (in this case, it went to a local camp for chronically ill children).
Running a race is fun, and different. I can run by myself any day.
So I told Kurt I’d run the race with him.
We arrived early, registered and did a 1.3 mile warm-up.
The National Anthem was sung by the “No Fella A Cappella,” an all-girl group from the local high school. It was a nice touch, and they did a really good job!
I had two goals for this race:
1. Not go out too fast
2. Beat my (slow!) time from two years ago.
Because I didn’t want to start out too fast, I lined up a little too far back. I spent the first half mile trying to get around people, but it didn’t bother me too much. I knew it was better than starting out too fast.
I ran pretty even splits and finished 46 seconds faster than I did two years ago.
2014: 25:38 (8:14, 8:09, 8:38)
2013: 24:38 (7:59, 7:46, 8:22)
2012: 26:24 (7:50, 8:15, 9:24)
The last mile is almost entirely uphill.
After the race, I found Kurt and we headed over to get some water and food.
There was a pretty good spread, but I only had eyes for ONE thing.
Of course I was happy that I decided to run the race. At least, that’s what I told myself (and Kurt).
And that wasn’t the end of it.
There was a lot of time spent wondering why I was a minute slower this year than last year. I was also thinking that conditions were a lot better this year than they were two years ago. So, even though I finished 46 seconds faster this year, it doesn’t really count. I was feeling angry with myself for not being able to run faster and even more angry with myself for letting it get to me.
I’m supposed to be above all of this silly negative thinking crap.
I’ve been enjoying my long, slow trail runs. I know that it’s completely insane for me to do nothing but long, slow trail runs for two straight months and still expect to be able to run a fast 5k.
Apparently I’m insane.
Does this mean that I shouldn’t run races until I’ve magically evolved into a better human being who doesn’t care about such trivial things as race times?
I kind of think it means I should run more races.