Oh sweet victory

Last night I raced in the second annual Women’s Charities Inc. 5k in Menomonee Falls. It’s a fundraiser put on by the Women’s Soccer Club that I play with, and the clinic where I work was also a race sponsor. Thus, I had my entry fee paid for in exchange for running in our clinic t-shirt. Nice!

I knew it would be a small race, last year they only had about 30 runners, and this year they had just under 80 people signed up by the day before. I had grand visions of winning the race, but I also knew that I am not a very fast 5k runner, and that someone would most likely kick my butt.

I got to registration early and started sizing up the competition. Some of the girls looked pretty fast, and my confidence was wavering. The kids’ race went off at 6:00, a half-mile-ish run around the pond in Oakwood Park. That was cute to watch, some of those kids are definitely future runners!

At 6:30 it was the adults’ turn. There ended up being about 95 runners, and we lined up at the start line. There was one other girl that looked like she meant business. She lined up front and center with her toe on the line. Uh-oh. Van “the Man” McNeal from 99.1 was the announcer, and he yelled “go.” Like I said, small race.

We took off and the girl ran out ahead of me. I had a really weird nervous feeling in my stomach, and I couldn’t catch my breath. I caught up to her and I was breathing so hard she was probably wondering what the heck was wrong with me. After about a half-mile, I started to pull away from her. I didn’t feel like I was running that great, but there were only about 5 guys ahead of me. I passed one of them, and then I was alone. I could see the other 4 guys up ahead, but they were way in front of me. I was so tired and out of breath the whole time, but I pressed on. I kept thinking to myself “you are definitely not a 5k runner.” About 1.5 miles in I glanced behind me and she was way back. I knew I had it locked up at this point, and I slowed down a little.

I ran back into the park, and I was so happy to see the finish line. I got to break the tape as the 1st place female, and then it set in. Holy crap I friggin’ won! My goal in race was to break 22 minutes, which I have never done before. Well my official time was…wait for it…20:39!! For the record, that equates to a pace of 6:40/mile. However, to be a bit more realistic, my garmin told me I ran 3.05 miles, not the full 3.1, which drops me down to a 6:47 pace. In any case, holy crap! I was not aware that I was capable of running 1 mile in under 7 minutes, let alone 3 in a row. I have completely shocked myself. The second place girl came in just over 21, and we high-fived about the great race. The best part was, I actually won a pretty sweet prize. It’s a $50 gift certificate for Silpada jewelry, and I can pick out anything in the catalog.

In other news, my last long run (3 hours) before Ironman was this morning. I felt good during it, and directly following the run I rewarded myself with some sweet deals at the Laacke & Joy’s warehouse sale. Tomorrow is the last super-long bike, and I am going solo. I plan to ride at least 100 miles, if not the full 112. It will be a mental test for sure, but I will be alone in the race, so I want to ride alone and not depend on anyone being there to keep me company, or let’s face it, to draft off of. So that’s that. It looks like I will have the opportunity on Friday to ride the Ironman loop again in Verona, which will be a good confidence builder. Tomorrow marks the beginning of the three-week count down….

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