I just realized that I don't have any more races scheduled for this year! I completed my last race of 2008 on December 13--the Reindeer Romp 4K! It is amazing to me to look back at this year and see how far I've come since my first road race on March 1, 2008! Come with me as I stroll down memory lane!
March 1, 2008
2008 Anthem 5K Fitness Classic
Obviously, since it was my first race ever, I was totally excited AND nervous! I was lucky enough to be able to share the experience with Joey. However, prior to the race, we promised we'd just run it for fun since it was our first race ever--since I had trained more for it, I kept it slower at first to stay back with him, until about mile 2 when he just ran off without me! From that point on, I've decided I'm running my own races. :) This was a GREAT race and it was a great way to introduce me to road racing. It was a well executed event (as are all legs of the Triple Crown, I believe) that I will revist year after year, as long as I'm able.
What I learned: Run your own race, even if you're running with your boyfriend; no matter how many times I peed prior to the race, I will have to pee right before the race; how to "warm" the field, which was entirely too much fun for me for some reason; my fitness level wasn't as good as I thought it was.
March 15, 2008
Rodes City Run 10K
The hair was trying to attack me:
Prior to this event, I had only run 6 miles one time--and it didn't turn out that well then. There was walking involved. The race was exciting but scary because I was all alone out there--though I did have my mom and Joey later there rooting me on. It was a GREAT route (a little funky through Butchertown, but that was another fun part of the race because all of us were running as fast as we could to get OUT of there!!!) and even though I was totally not prepared for it (and had to walk portions of it at the end), I had a blast.
The spectators were FANTASTIC--lots of cheering and music. It was awesome. What I remember best is a little girl up at the top of a hill at her house with her mom holding her and she was screaming "HI!" to runners--nobody was waving at her so I screamed back at her and waved and she just got so happy. I knew right then that she would be a runner when she got older, guaranteed!
What I learned: It's fun to push yourself beyond your comfort level; it's fun to run your own race; there were people walking this race at the same pace I was able to run it; it's not cool to tell the runners that the race is almost over when it's actually NOT almost over; I needed to train harder and learn how to pace myself.
May 10, 2008
2008 Throo the Zoo 5K
This race sounded like too much fun to pass up and I think Joey was too jealous of me running Rodes that he wanted to do this one with me. Portions of this race actualy run inside the zoo so you get to see some of the animals that can stay outside. It was an easy course and pretty fun for me--and it was my first time wearing a running skirt to a race. That was a big deal for me back then. LOL The race did start a little late and wasn't executed as well as the prior two--but still a good race that I'll consider completing again.
What I learned: if you tell people that a monkey got loose while you were running and was chasing people, they believe you.
October 11, 2008
Louisville Komen Race for the Cure 5K
This was my first race since the Throo the Zoo in May--5 months off without a race means a lot of anticipation for THIS race AND a lot of time to train in between. However, I hadn't trained as well as I should have during those 5 months--but I HAD done enough where I knew that I had improved my speed enough to see a faster finish. I had also starting pushing myself a little more in training, so I had good hopes for my ability to pace myself this race. Even so, my goal was to run sub-35:00, which would have been more than one minute off of my last 5K. I figured it was realistic--but when I crossed that finish line and saw the time was 30:37 I was in awe and nearly cried because I was so proud. But something just didn't feel right about the time. It turns out that it wasn't a true 5K distance--they apparently shorted us a few tenths of a mile.
What I learned: I really wanted a Garmin Forerunner so that I would be able to KNOW when I was getting shorted; all races aren't executed smoothly; I really hate when walkers start at the front of the pack--really really hate it.
October 25, 2008
2008 Home Run 5 Mile
This was my most anticipated race of the year, excluding my first race ever. I heard about this race from a flyer inside of the packet for my first race, the Anthem 5K. When I saw that it was a 5 mile race at Bernheim in the Fall, no less, I knew I was going to do it. But I thought to myself: How on Earth am I ever going to be able to run 5 miles? I really didn't know it was possible for me to do it. Come race day, I was chilly and not in the mood to run BUT I did have mom and Joey with me--they were both doing the 5K portion of the race.
This race was GREAT and goes down as my favorite race of the year, I think. It was beautiful, fun, a good challenge for me and so very well executed by the race directors and volunteers. It was an excellent cause, and what I remember most about it was the loyalty and friendliness of the runners. Everyone was so great and fun to chat with in passing. This is a race I'll certainly do again.
My performance was something I was proud of--my goal was to finish the 5 miles in at least 55 minutes, but I was thinking it would be more like 58-59 minutes. The last leg was very difficult but when I crossed the finish in 53:20, I couldn't believe how good I still felt. I should have pushed a little harder during the race but I don't have any regrets.
What I learned: I finally met Joe, and he rocks; I could have pushed myself more and that was going to be something I was going to train for; I wasn't giving myself enough credit for the runner I was becoming; it really means a lot to me for friends/family to watch me at races.
2008 Iroquois Hill Runners Thanksgiving Day 5 Mile
This was a fun race with a lot of great people. I really enjoyed running this and pushing myself. It was also the first time Tom and Joe and I were all racing together so that was fun for me. It was a familiar race route and I was definitely prepared for it. I knew I was heading for a PR after mile 3 because I had set goals at specific distances during my training and I seemed to be breaking those times--I ended up finishing the race in sub 52:00--I beat my goal AND got a PR!
This was definitely one of my favorite races this year and it felt great to be able to run at a faster pace--I finally got into the low 10's on average!
What I learned: You CAN run on Thanksgiving morning AND still host Thanksgiving dinner at your house IF you do some advanced planning; go to the bathroom early; I like running slightly longer races; you shouldn't drink too much water during a race or you'll feel funky; I'm getting faster with hard work.
December 13, 2008
Reindeer Romp 4k
This race is the first leg of the Polar Bear Grand Prix--a three race series that takes us through the winter, and while it wasn't my best effort, it was fun! Joey ran this with me and we were lucky enough to run into Tom and Joe right before the start--RuntheVille represented in our Christmas apparel!!! The final hill really really kicked my butt--I thought I was prepared for it because of my training on that course prior to the race but I just wasn't. I finished but not in my goal time! I had fun though and had a great breakfast with great breakfast with great people afterward!
What I learned: You can't achieve EVERY goal you set; I have more work to do; it's just as fun to cheer for someone else during a race than it is to run a race
In addition to those 7 races, I also walked the American Heart Walk with my mom and I volunteered at the Champions 4 Her 5K, which was GREAT fun. I intend to do more volunteering next year and refine my race list as well.
Here's my preliminary race list for 2009:
The final two legs of the Polar Bear Grand Prix--which includes
Snowman Shuffle 4 Mile - January 10, 2009
Frostbite 5K - February 14, 2009
The Louisville Triple Crown of Running-which includes:
Anthem 5K Fitness Classic - March 7, 2009
Rodes City Run 10K - March 21, 2009
Papa John's 10 Mile - April 11, 2009
The Kentucky Derby Festival mini-Marathon - April 25, 2009 (my first ever HM)
Home Run 5 Mile - no info yet
The Louisville Half Marathon - Fall 2009