living in the now

Still rambling about running. Sometimes other things.

Filtering by Tag: 5K

Stars, stripes and motivation

Stars and Stripes 5k Howland, OhioAfter a rough couple of months and probably one of the biggest running funks I've ever been in, I returned today to the site of where I set a 5k PR a couple of years ago -- the Stars and Stripes 5k in Howland, Ohio. I didn't think too much about setting a goal for this race other than using it as a test to see what kind of shape I'm in.

I'm a long way off from the type of 5k racing shape I'd like to be in, but I'm also not starting from scratch. I just needed some kind of bar to set headed into the second half of the year.

I figured that setting a goal of 24 minutes would be realistic. It's kind of disappointing that I'm not going for sub 22 at this point in the year, but I'm not battling reality anymore.

The race started off well. I fell into a comfortable group and thought I'd keep that pace for a while, only to look at my watch at the first turn and realize I didn't start it.

I took it off, put it in my pocket. Time to really fulfill that 2013 goal of mine by not wearing a watch in a race.

When I hit the first mile and the guy was calling out mile times, I was feeling pretty good. I was right at 7:45.

In the next mile I found myself pacing just behind a guy in a blue shirt. He kept looking back a bit, but I was very much running his race, not mine. And I knew that I was probably pushing myself more than I would have had I had my watch.

At mile 2, I was at 15:20. One thing was going through my head at this point -- don't fade away. Dropping off in the second half of races or the final few miles has been my biggest downfall in the past year. I wasn't going to walk away from this race letting myself down again.

When I rounded the corner for the final tenth of a mile or so, I passed a guy who had passed me a quarter mile earlier, then two other guys dusted me as they were fighting neck and neck. I saw that clock and kept my focus on sub 24.

I saw 23:49 when I crossed the finish clock, so give or take a few seconds, I hit my goal.

I have some mix feelings about it -- on one hand I'm ecstatic that coming out of a low point with running I can run a 7:40 pace 5k with a strong finish; on the other hand being 90 seconds slower than 2 years ago is disappointing.

It's my own undoing with the shape I'm in right now, but it's also motivation to turn things around in the next couple of months. I can feel myself breaking out of this both physically and mentally, and now I have to get to work making things happen.


moving, Richmond

It's been one hell of a week with getting out of my apartment and seeing boxes of stuff from there, storage here in Richmond and from my mom’s house in Bedford come together.

I feel overwhelmed by these strange things that I have kept my whole life, and by what my wife and I taken from place to place.

Enough is enough.

I've given myself a deadline for several things with this move and with running: July 1. It's the new Jan. 1.

  • No boxes in my house that I have to go through. Some boxes – just a small handful – may have to go to the attic to be unseen, but my wife and I are making tremendous progress de-cluttering our lives. I have to go through these things so they don't just continue to collect dust.
  • Pick a paint color for the baby's room, or at least have it narrowed down. The project to finishing his room also will have a deadline soon.
  • Refocus on my diet. Moving in the past week has led to some really bad choices to eat quickly. The reset process has started this week; the major focus comes in a couple of weeks. I have to at least celebrate my birthday next week before I eliminate some things, right?
  • Develop a training plan to get to the 5k PR mark. I’m signed up for a 5k on July 4 in Ohio (that I know is a 5k since I've done it before), but I know that I'm not in PR shape. That race will really be the benchmark to see where I stand.
  • Read blogs again. I miss my virtual running friends, but as a way to stay focused on other things, I had to make a cut to blog reading temporarily.

As for some other things going on, my 35 "streak" was going great until the move. It wasn't that I didn't think about it, but I was so exhausted at the end of every day Friday through Sunday that nothing else got done.

It was a nice challenge for a little while, but it wasn't such a great goal with what I had going on. That doesn't mean I won't stop doing some things related to that number this month though.

I also slipped in an extra soft drink this weekend, which once again dampens my "13 goals" for the year. Just as I did in April, though, I think I can get through July before I have another one. I simply wanted an extra caffeine boost on Sunday to keep opening boxes.

The 5k that wasn't

If I were to run a 5k right now in 23:21, I'd be thrilled. It would mean I'd be very close to once again getting to a PR in that distance. I ran 23:21 in an advertised 5k today.

Only problem is that was for 2.9 miles. And no, it wasn't a Garmin issue or a weather issue causing watch problems. It was less than 3 miles, no doubt about it.

This race has problems with getting the distance right -- read this post from my friend Jeremy who did the inaugural running of this event with a different course route. (And yes, I totally stole his title for this post.)

What I was hoping for today was to test where I stand with a 5k. I've done very little in the way of speed work lately so I knew heading into it that I'd probably be around 25 minutes. Maybe, in the right conditions, be a little closer to 24 minutes.

With this pace, I would have hit 3.1 in 25 exactly. I'll never know though what I had left in the tank to close it out strong, or if I could even close it out strong.

I'm not going to sit around and obsess about my time and how I've gotten so out of 5k shape -- it is what it is. And it's what happens when I run without training for something.

Now, the work begins ...