If anyone knows why I never learn that running two races back to back is insane, please do enlighten me. Because this is the third Labor Day in a row that I’ve done both the 5K and the 10K, and I cannot understand it at all.
That being said, I am ecstatic that I was able to run these races, since my ankles have been hating on me something fierce. I was terrified that I had re-broken my right one, and after a few days off, I determined that it probably wasn’t broken — just really unhappy. So of course my left post tib tendon felt left out and decided to join the party.
I do love heading to the start line of a race with a doctor’s note in hand, lest I be unable to complete the distance. (As in… run the 5K, see it was a terrible idea, defer the 10K.)
Short little warmup. Seemed kind of okay, though I felt really sluggish and slow and just… blah. All you can see in this photo, though, is how happy I was to actually be able to start the first race.
My plan for the 5K was to run it blind — I was curious to see what would happen if I did that. It could go one of two ways: I’d either run a lot faster or a lot slower than I expected. It turns out that I was wrong about that, because I actually ended up running pretty much what I would have been aiming for, given that I was going to be running a 10K immediately afterward.
But the execution of it was not pretty.
After the annoying little out-and-back right after the start, I found myself positioned as the fourth female. I passed one of the women ahead of me about half a mile later. It felt like I was running an appropriate 5K effort, which was all I really wanted to do, so I was trying not to pay too much attention to my placement. Another woman passed me right around the halfway point, just as we rounded the lighthouse at the northern tip of the island. And then I was reminded of what I always conveniently forget: the east side of Roosevelt Island is never without a headwind.
I did look down at my watch once during the last mile, just to see the elapsed distance, and I thought I saw a lap pace beginning with a 7. Oh, well. Trying to pick it up in the face of a headwind is not something I like to do. And I know that this course always measures long for me, so a PR is pretty unlikely anyway.
That’s a model positive split if I ever saw one. 3.16 miles in 21:17, 6:44/mi. Which is actually sub-21:00 pace, for, you know… 3.1 miles.
Officially, 21:14, 6:51/mi; 26/357 OA, 4/186 F, and 1/51 F30-39. Had I been watching my pace, I’d have attempted a similar finish time, albeit more evenly. But hey, I was still able to walk, so I was not about to complain.
Even though the prospect of running a 10K right then really did not excite me. I do not like the 10K. Ergo, my PR is so soft that I should be able to best it despite having run a 5K just prior.
Ha ha ha.
Same course. Times two. Meaning I get to face that headwind again. Times two.
I was planning to look at my watch for the 10K, mainly so that I didn’t go out too fast. And I kept trying to slow down in the first mile, but for some reason it just didn’t work, since I kept feeling like I wasn’t running as fast as I was. I think I was in third place for a bit; I passed a woman not long before the first turn around the lighthouse. Half a mile later, a woman passed me — I don’t think it was the same one. And then I played leapfrog for fourth place with another woman for the rest of the race. I thought it would be a brilliant idea to draft off her on the east side, and that is when I learned that we were dealing with a crosswind, not just a headwind. GAH!!
Since we pass the finish line twice, I knew that I’d run the first half in 23:00. I really, really wanted to run a negative — or at least an even — split, but around the fourth mile marker, my ankle started to complain. It had been reasonably well-behaved until that point, and it wasn’t worth aggravating it further. I abandoned the idea of the negative split, as well as that of taking fourth place… but the leapfrogging continued, for some reason:
I was in the lead when we came to the last out-and-back, and the idea of finishing in the same position in both races was so appealing to me (I’m weird about having things be “linear” like that), I just had to break away.
For the love. 6.29 miles in 46:20, 7:22/mi.
Officially, 6.2 miles in 46:17, 7:28/mi. 35/317 OA, 4/155 F, and 1/43 F30-39.
The moral of the story here is that if you are going to run two races in one day, don’t expect to be breaking any records in either of them.
Which is more than fine with me, really. Because I may not have broken any records, but I didn’t break any bones either, and that is infinitely more valuable.