Yesterday I ran the Safe Harbor Labor Day 5k in Madison. The money went to benefit Safe Harbor Child Advocacy Center. It's an organization that I had heard little about. Really I was just looking for a Labor Day 5k to compare to my Memorial Day Challenge Hearts and Minds 5k. That race I finished right at 40 minutes. My goal for this race was to finish faster than that. I finished at 38:36! It wasn't as fast as I had hoped but it was still reaching my goal AND I ran most of it. I would say I didn't walk anymore than 5 minutes during the whole race.
My husband joined me on this race as well as my good friend Kinsey and her husband Keith, he did the 10k race. They have all been a great support and Kinsey crossed the finish line by my side. I definitely ran faster than her but she would keep running when I would stop to walk. Each time she caught up to me, I would make sure to get up and run again so I could mostly stay ahead of her. I had never run further than 2 miles without stopping. I was unable to go that far without stopping yesterday. The course was hilly and I wasn't prepared for that. Overall I felt pretty good. I really wish I would have been able to run the whole thing! Looking back on it, I could have worked through those moments when my shin splints hurt or the side ache under my ribs. I should have been able to work through those! I just kept telling myself it was mental and I could get through this.
There was a father/daughter duo in front of me, well they passed me at one point where I was walking. I kept up with them for a while and could hear bits and pieces of their conversation. Dad was definitely a better runner than the daughter but it was so beautiful to hear him encouraging her to keep working through the urge to stop to walk. She was talking to him about things that were unrelated to that moment and he told her that it wasn't important to worry about, that she should just concentrate on what she was doing, to keep the pace, and just keep moving. I wondered what my dad would say to me in that same situation?
The last mile of the run was hellish long! But atleast it was flat, unlike most of the route. Kinsey and I finished it out together, for the most part. This was when the mental fatigue was kicking in. I knew I was pretty good up to the two mile mark because I had done that before. I was unsure about that last mile. I found myself telling my self that I had gotten through the first two miles and that I could do that one last mile! I couldn't feel my left food and my shins hurt...a lot! But I just kept putting one foot infront of the other foot, over and over and over again. That was all I had to do to get to the end. Once I saw the finish line, I did put a little bit more effort into it, just to shave off a second or two from my time. I'm proud of my 38:36 as I should be!
This coming weekend I get to cheer my little sister on while she competes in her second Ironman Wisconsin! I'm extremely excited and nervous for her. I'm excited about watching her come out of the lake water and getting on her bike, I'm excited about her insanely fast biking through Verona... Twice! I get to ring my cow bell through the streets of downtown Madison while she runs a full marathon. I am nervous about the weather! The last time she did this race in 2006, it was cold and it rained all....day....long! It did not make for great racing and it definitely did not make for great race watching. I've been watching the weather since September 11th first started showing up on the 10 day forecast. As of right now, the low is 54 and the high is 77 and the sky is supposed to be sunny! Please pray that she has some great weather for her second Ironman!