Race Recap: Race for Red 5k

This morning I ran the Race for Red 5k. This was an important race to me, but to explain its importance, we’ve got to do a couple flashbacks:

In June 2015 I ran the Young Living Run Through the Lavender 5k in 28:45, with an average pace of 9:15. In July 2016 I ran the Temple to Temple 5k in 28:43, again, with an average pace of 9:15. I wanted to try to get a better time last fall, but the one 5k I did was so congested for the first part of the race that I just decided to take it easy.

I signed up for the Race for Red 5k with the hope of breaking that 9 minute mile. That was the goal I told people. But as I began training, I quietly made a couple more goals: get an average 8:30 minute mile, and get in the top 10 women for the race. (After looking at past results, and considering my goal time, I felt this was a good goal).

Backing up—Training. In past years I would run and work to increase my mileage gradually, but I never followed a formal training program or did any speed workouts in there. This year I actually have a coach who has been training me both to PR in this 5k, and also for a longer distance race that I’m running later. So, I actually trained, under the supervision of someone who knows what he’s doing and is an accomplished runner himself, specifically for this race, and specifically with speed in mind.

And I did it. Unofficial result: 26:54.9 (8:39 min/mi). 7th place overall women’s. 2nd place Women ages 25-29.

…I DID IT!!!

My Garmin tracked it a little bit differently, and I did start running before I remembered to start my watch, so that’s my bad. But according to my Garmin I went 3.08 miles (like I said, whoops) in 26:51, at an 8:43 mile.

While I didn’t quite get that 8:30 I had hoped for, I got pretty darn close, especially considering my previous best 5k had an average of 9:15 min/mi. That’s a pretty solid jump there and I’m really proud of the work I did to get there.

I recognize some ways I could have raced SMARTER, and I’m excited to try again.

The race itself: I think Intermountain Healthcare organized a quality race! They were well organized, both in packet pickup and during the race itself. The course was well marked and they had people at every turn (and there were many in this course) cheerfully directing runners which way to go. They also had police officers stopping traffic both at small roads and a major road for runners to cross, and they did so in a timely manner so I didn’t even have to slow down. It was awesome. THEY were awesome. The course was relatively flat, which was nice. Running into the bright sun wasn’t that fun on the second half, but that’s just how loop courses work! We were greeted with a live band playing at the finish line and the energy was just great.

And now, the sentimental friend story portion of this blog post. I ran this race with my friends Sam (who is also my coach) and Dane. They are awesome. The three of us also have a tradition of watching Brooklyn 99 (formerly New Girl) every Thursday night, and thus I entitled our run this morning “99 Night Day Run.” 😛

I should also note, the three of us were on a Red Rock Relay team last October (which is when we decided to start the New Girl/99 Night, because being in a van all day with people will yield awesome ideas like that), and our Red Rock team was called “Saturday’s Warriors” (also the title of a Mormon musical from the 1980’s)—also named by me. SO. Just take note. My team naming skills are 2 for 2. 😉

But really, these guys are great. Sam offered to pace me initially, but I knew that HE could do awesome things in this race himself, so I made all 3 of us run separately to see what we could do. Sam, Dane and I all ended up placing in our age groups (medals!!) and Sam got 2nd overall man. WOOHOO! Then we celebrated with smoothies at GreenMe Smoothies in Orem. So good.

I loved this race this morning. I feel accomplished and strong, and eager to see what more I can do with the 5k distance.