I ran my first race of the year today and I am delighted with the result.
After a difficult and slow workout on Thursday when I ran below pace time for the first time in a while, I felt a bit of trepidation going into today's 5 km race. My goal was to run relaxed and get a feeling for the pain of racing again. I have had a difficult past 4 weeks of training and I did not have a lot of confidence in my training.
At the start line I was feeling good. The major feeling I had was happiness to be back in the running world around familiar faces and friends. It was also great to be in an environment where I can intimidate others with the leanness of my frame. I knew by the field assembled that I would have a good group of men to run with and also that I had a chance to win the race.
Off the start and for the first 2 km I ran as if in a tempo. The pace did not feel that fast nor did I struggle. I ran at the front of the chase group as Clout went to the front and ran in first for the duration of the race. Our first km was a bit slow which was great as I did not get into oxygen debt from the start. As we hit the Seawall I was feeling strong, thus I wanted to push the pace a bit. I was running in a group of 4 guys and we were cruising along. My little surge was short lived as I was passed by Ziak and Utting. Both men surged ahead and I could not stay with their pace, although they were very close in front. As we hit the last km I was within reach of the two men ahead of me. I felt relaxed though a bit tired. I wanted another gear to catch the guys but they were a bit too quick today. I felt in control through the finish and am really happy with my result. I was 4th overall and 2nd in the BC Championships. I ran a new personal best, 15:21, which I am super happy about considering I have had a few issues the past couple of months. This bodes very well for the rest of my season.
It is always fun to go to a race with no expectations and wind up with a great result. There were a lot of factors today that made a great run. The key was being able to race in a pack. Having a group of men to run with whom I know and have trained with is wonderful. Knowing these men and the quality times they are capable of relaxes the mind so the body can get into a rhythm and relax into a race. The only time I really had to push was over the last km. This race was not mentally taxing for me and if anything has made me really excited to get a few weeks of quality training in before my next effort. Now that the marathon has been taken out of the plan I have many fast races to look forward to. I am especially excited to run the Sunrun!
I have a lot to look forward to this summer. A new apartment, teeth whitening, furniture refinishing and fun training. I do not think I have been this excited in years. It is nice to be filled with optimism!