Friday, July 08, 2011
World Masters 5K race
I was nervous. It was warm (25-26C; about 77-79F). But I was also strangely calm, after warming up with Katie Grimes and Nyle. When they stood us on the track to line us up, I closed my eyes, focused, and had a U2 song ("Magnificent") going through my head. I remembered the quote from Chariots of Fire, "When I run, I feel God's pleasure" and thought about the real reasons for racewalking. I was seriously in my zone.
Nyle and I were a little intimidated by the Russian woman. She was statuesque, gorgeous, and amazingly fit. She did have a taped left hamstring though. I told Nyle that appearance means nothing and that we are to walk our own race, and I promptly stopped worrying about her.
The start gun went off and I told myself to go easy. I was probably in about 10th place coming around the first 200, but not too much jostling. I got to the first 200 in 1:04, which was just about right where I wanted to be (1:07/200m would be 27:55, which I figured in this heat was about right?). I settled in and then never really paid attention to my 200m splits again, which is unusual for me. I got in the zone and just kept clicking away the laps. My lap counter was SO nice and was yelling them out for me and I just felt like I was cruising. I was a bit disappointed that my first km was 5:36 but then realized that was perfect for the conditions. I just kept going, and cruised the first 3km. My splits were 5:36, 5:38, and 5:39 - slower than I'd wanted, but in hindsight I think it was perfect for the conditions. I was focused and in my zone.
At the 4th km I sped it up, because my coach said the race begins at 3km. Not long after that I lapped the Russian woman (whew!). I pushed hard from there to the finish, and with 2 laps to go felt so relieved it was almost over. It hurt, but felt good too. I did 5:34 for the 4th km - pushed my watch a few sec early so it says 5:31 on Garmin connect, but it was 5:34. I was about 100m behind Nyle for the whole race, and tried to catch her, but I was in my zone and just had no more. I didn't mind though - I was racewalking my own race and it felt good. The last 2km I just floored it is hard as I could and gave it my all; I pushed super hard for the last 400m and was so very, very relieved to finish. My last km was also a 5:34! Nice pacing!
I hugged Nyle and Katie right away and congratulated them. Whew...it's over...we chatted a while and then we went over to hug David, who was waiting on the other side of the track. Awesome race. Nyle and I are celebrating with wine, crackers & cheese, and chocolate. We are the world champion and silver medalist, after all!
Photo below: 1st-3rd in WMA 5K W40-44
Garmin connect data here.