Tag Archive for race recap

{February 2015} #5bythe5th Virtual Race

It’s time for my favorite virtual race of the year! Laura over at Mommy Run Fast hosts the 5 by the 5th race each year and I’m participating in it once again in 2015. The runners that have signed up for the race choose if they want to run a 5k, 5 miles or a combination by the 5th of each month. It runs from February through May.

A year ago when I ran the 5 by the 5th virtual race I ran my 5k personal best at 24:38 which is an 8:03 pace. I call this my PB instead of my PR because it wasn’t at an official race. My PR in the 5k distance is 25:38 as of last May at one of our local 5k races.

Initially when I thought about this virtual race series I wanted to improve my 5k time from last year but running 3.1 miles at that pace is very intimidating to me right now. Instead I’m deciding to do my best for the fitness that I am right now and try and improve on that over the next couple months of the series.

That makes much more sense, right?

One resource that I will reference throughout the next few months is Tina Muir’s guest post over at Laura’s blog called How to Train for a Faster 5k. Tina, an elite runner that also blogs over at Fuel Your Future with Tina Muir, shared five workouts for a faster 5k. Perfect timing!

So how did my first 5 by the 5th race of 2015 go? Ugh, it was hard and not as fast as I wanted but it gives me a good baseline as to how I want to improve over the next few months.

#5bythe5th Virtual Race | amotherspace.net

I ran the 5k during the week in the morning which meant that it was on the treadmill. As much as I would prefer to run these virtual races out on the street I am not running outside in the early morning right now mainly because of the darkness. So I hit the treadmill instead.

I ran a mile warm up in 9:32. Stopped for a drink of water. (I’m not coordinated enough to drink water from a water bottle on the treadmill. Maybe a bottle with a straw would be easier?) Then started back up for the 5k. I started at 7.0 speed on my ‘mill, which is an 8:34 pace. Ideally, this was the pace that I wanted to hold for the entire 3.1 miles.

That didn’t happen.

After about a mile in I had to slow it down. I punched in 6.5 (9:14 pace) and held that for awhile before jumping back up to 7.0. I did this back and forth pace for the remainder of the run except in the last quarter mile I pushed the pace up to 7.5 (8:00 pace) for a strong finish.

After I finished the 5k, I started my cool down. In total I ran 5 miles with an average pace of 9:03.

It completely showed on this run that I haven’t done any formal speed work since training for the Chicago Marathon. Yikes! Of course I’ve done an occasional fartlek workout or 400 repeats here and there but this run has convinced me to add it into my weekly rotation!

5-by-5th-Medals | amotherspace.net

 Are you participating in the 5 by the 5th virtual race? Do you run speed work every week?

#5bythe5th Virtual Race Recap! | A Mother's Pace #runchat Click To Tweet

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2015 Hangover Half Race Recap

To start the new year off I did something kinda crazy. I decided on Monday to run a half marathon on Thursday, New Year’s Day. What better way to begin a new year than to run a race, right?

 

Hangover Half Race Recap | amotherspace.net

 

Now, this might not seem crazy to everyone but I’ve never signed up for a race of this distance (or further) without specifically training for it, or at least during training for another race.

What made me do this? Well, I usually run a local 5k called the Frosty 5k but this year they didn’t offer it. I was without my normal race and was trying to decide what to do. Should I just run the 5k that they offered or go big and run the half? I went big, of course!

 

Hangover Half Race Recap | amotherspace.net

 

Ever since the Chicago Marathon in October I’ve been trying to get back into running after an injury. I’ve made it to where I’m mostly comfortable, although my foot is sometimes tired after running or being on my feet a lot. In December I had worked up to running about 15 miles a week with a long run of about 8 miles on the weekends.

Because of my mileage I knew that I could finish 13.1 miles but I knew it wouldn’t be easy. What made this even more interesting was that we had snow a couple of days before and freezing temps during the race. 23 degrees Fahrenheit with a ‘feels like’ temperature of 12 degrees. Brrr! I was more concerned about the paths being cleared of snow and ice than I was of the actual temperature.

I had second thoughts as I was snuggling with my daughter early in the morning before the race but I made myself get all layered up and drove down to the race start line.

I warmed up by jogging and doing some dynamic stretches and then we were off. It was a pretty small race and I’m wondering how many people the weather scared away.

 

Hangover Half Race Recap | amotherspace.net

 

We ran straight onto the bike path which was a little crowded in the beginning. It’s a pretty place to run in Wichita though, especially with a little snow on the ground and a frozen river beside you. My goal going into this race was to finish without walking. I had no time goal at all and I completely thought that this was going to be my personal worst race, timing-wise. Spoiler…it was not!

Because of the cold temperature the race directors decided just to give out bottles of water instead of cups of water. I can see why this would be helpful because a lot of people spill water at the water stops and that would have made it slick. However, giving runners a regular size water bottle instead of a mini bottle wasn’t the easiest to handle. For some reason I left my handheld in the car and so I was stuck carrying this huge water bottle from mile 3 until probably about mile 12. That’s my only complaint of the race, other than that it was well thought out with a lot of good support and water stops.

 

Hangover Half Race Recap | amotherspace.net

 

I’ve never taken photos like this during a race before but I figured because this was a ‘fun’ race for me I was going to take a picture if I wanted. Usually in a race I think about wanting to take a picture but I never slow down to do it. I didn’t stop running while I took these but I’m sure it slowed me down a little.

I mentioned that it felt like 12 degrees out and I was really nervous about running in that temperature before the race. I’ve been running in around 25 degrees and I was hoping that it wouldn’t be extremely uncomfortable. My husband found a cover for my face in his stash of winter gear from when he used to live in Breckenridge and it ended up being the perfect thing to keep me warm. I wore it around my neck for the entire race and pulled it up over my nose when my face was cold.

 

Hangover Half Race Recap | amotherspace.net

Photo Credit: Running Connection

 

I also stashed my mittens in my vest pockets after a couple of miles and just relied on the thumb holes from my shirt. I ended up being very comfortable, temperature-wise during the race. I had on a pair of running tights, a sleeveless shirt, a blue C9 long sleeve shirt, my pink Saucony long sleeve shirt and my puffer vest. I ran with my hat, the mittens that I took off and the face mask that I wore around my neck for most of the race.

Although there were a few slippery spots on the course, overall the path was better than I had expected. There was one downhill that we ran twice (part of the course looped) and it was tricky running down it without slipping. I don’t mind that we had snow on the ground. If you’re running a race in January it just adds to the experience!

I said above that I had no time goals for the race but I was hoping to keep it under a 10 minute mile. I managed to do just that and, even though it was tough, I felt pretty good during the entire race. I finished in 2 hours and 6 minutes which is a lot better than I had anticipated. It’s about 11 minutes faster than my slowest half marathon but 9 minutes slower than my PR. I’ll take it!

One last thing about the race itself. When I turned off my Garmin I realized that it was very short. Only 12.86 miles. I’m so curious if it was a problem with my watch or if other runners experienced the same thing. I should have asked but I didn’t think about it when I was chatting with people after the race.

 

Hangover Half Race Recap | amotherspace.net

 

After the race I immediately went inside the Boathouse (the venue where the race was stationed), went straight for my coffee mug and then filled it up with hot chocolate. I stretched for a few minutes, picked up the after race food and then sat down for the awards ceremony. PF Chang’s provided the post race food and gave us lettuce wraps. It still felt like morning for me so eating a lettuce wrap seemed a little strange until I smelled it for a little while and realized how hungry I was. It was fun to have a fortune cookie on the first day of the year!

This was my first year participating in the Hangover Half Series. The entire series consists of a 5K on the evening of the 31st, another 5K to ring in the New Year and then either a 5K or the Half Marathon on New Year’s Day. Some year I think it would be fun to run all three races!

 

Hangover Half Race Recap | amotherspace.net

 

Hangover Half Marathon Results

Official Distance: 13.1 miles

Garmin Distance: 12.86

Official Time: 2:06:02

Garmin Time: 2:06:05

Official Average Pace: 9:37

Garmin Average Pace: 9:48

Overall Place: 106 out of 240

 

Hangover Half Race Recap | amotherspace.net

 

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2014: The Year of the PR

Running in 2014 turned out to be pretty fantastic, even though I spent the last couple of months dealing with an injury. I could also call 2014 The Year of the PR, I’ll focus on that and not the injury! I discovered while going through races for this post that I set personal records in 8 of the 13 races that I ran this year! I know I’m probably not supposed to say it (because it’s about me…) but, that’s amazing!

 

Johnston's Half Marathon | amotherspace.net

 

I set my 5K PR in January and then broke it again in May. It now stands at 25:38. I set my 4 mile PR in March with a 34:04 time. In April I PR’d in the 10K with a time of 52:35. Then I made several half marathon PR’s. The first was in May (2:04:21) then again in August (2:02:37) and finally I broke the 2 hour barrier with another PR in September (1:57:02.) I ran my second full marathon in October and set a 40+ minute PR with the time of 4:22:54.

That’s most definitely a fantastic year! In fact, it makes me a little nervous about 2015 because in no way is it going to compare to how great 2014 was for my running. I’m okay with that though!

 

Chicago Marathon 2014 | amotherspace.net

Photo Credit: Photogenic Chicago

My goal race for the year was the Chicago Marathon in October. I spent the entire year preparing for it, even before training started. I wanted to make sure that I had a good base heading into training. The marathon turned out to be the best racing and possibly running experience of my life. Yes, it was that incredible. Did you miss that recap? You can read all about it —–> here. If you are contemplating running a marathon and the Chicago Marathon is one you are considering…sign up for the lottery or run for a charity, like the Ronald McDonald House. I can’t recommend it enough.

My year in numbers.

 

1,261.89: number of running miles

2014 blew away my past mileage high of 622 miles. I set my Run This Year goal way back in January to run 2,014 kilometers throughout the year. I exceeded it last week and went on to run a total of 2,030.82 kilometers for the year.

 

Run This Year | amotherspace.net

 

165.44: highest mileage in one month

12: number of running months

16: number of days with no running due to Plantar Fasciitus after the Chicago Marathon. (It felt like forever so I’m surprised to see that it was only 16 days!)

13: number of races (Frosty 5K, 3 5 by the 5th virtual races, St. Patrick’s Day Party and Run 4 miler, Easter SunRun 10K, World Run Virtual 10K, Spring Prairie Fire Half Marathon, Get Your Rear in Gear 5K, Southside Scorcher 10K, Run for Your Momma Half Marathon, Johnston’s Half Marathon, Chicago Marathon)

One of my goals for 2014 was to race 14 races. (#14in2014) if I had added them up before this week and found out I was only one race short I might have tried to squeeze one more race in this year!

4: number of virtual races (Spring 5 by the 5th Series + the World Run)

2014 in Review | amotherspace.net

6: number of medals

2: Age Group Awards

0: number of DNS (did not start) races

4: number of states I ran in (KS, IA, OK, IL)

4: number of people in my (immediate) family that supported me every step of the way. I couldn’t have had the running year that I had without their understanding and support as I went out on all my miles this year.
Family | amotherspace.net

So, I kinda feel like I was bragging a lot in this post. I’m proud of my running improvements over the year (and shocked by them) but I don’t mean to share them to brag.  I’ve had a good year and I always like to keep all these numbers in one nice little post at the end of the year. If you’ve made it to the end, thanks for reading!

Are you a numbers geek like me? 
Do you like to look back on all the running numbers of the year?
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