A story of going from being a non-runner to planning for a marathon in three years...

Monday, August 17, 2009

Rally for Autism 5K Race Report

On Saturday morning, Kim and I met up at a forest preserve in Libertyville, IL to run a 5K together. We'd picked this race because based on last year's times, we should have easily placed in the top three in our age group.

We arrived around 8:30 AM and it was HOT. And I quickly realized that the course had no shade. At all. Our original goal was to run an average 8:20 pace. We headed out for a quick warm-up jog and decided that, what with the heat, we'd be okay doing our first mile in more like 8:30 and then re-evaluating. Good thing, too, because, as you'll see, the heat was killer.

It looked like a smallish, laid back kind of race. No corrals, no chips, just a start banner and a finish banner. Thankfully, though, there were two water stations and lots of course volunteers to make sure we stayed on the correct path. Looking at the results, it appears that over 500 people participated, but I would bet that about 150 of those were walkers and not runners.

Click to see larger...and see if you can find Kim and me!

Our first mile was right on target for our original goal. But after that we started to go downhill and, sadly, not literally. Between the sun, the heat, and Kim's shin injury, we decided it was time to power walk for a bit. After that, we would decide to run to a certain landmark and then walk for a bit. I think we were both disappointed that we had to walk, but we knew that it was for the best. I've discovered that blazing sun is my kryptonite and running a race on a hot August day in no shade does not lead to a good race time. Also, hills. Those darn rolling hills. Interestingly enough, I found myself passing people on a lot of them.

I found a burst of energy at the end, though, as I always do. I powered it up a slight hill and ran hard for the finish with Kim on my heels.

Again, click to see it bigger

I ran into the finish chute and, I'll be honest, I almost threw up the banana I'd eaten a little over an hour before. I had to put my hand over my mouth as I gagged. I managed to keep it down, though. Thankfully! However, I was a little too distracted to remember to hit Stop on my Garmin. Once I'd been sprayed down with water and gotten a bottle of water to drink I finally remembered. That meant, though, that I was unsure of my actual time. Jason did get a picture of me going into the finish chute that showed the clock with 28:21 on it. We decided to stick around for the awards ceremony...just in case.

Sadly, the awards ceremony was not as organized as the race. Issues with a printer caused some delays and then they were giving out the awards but not saying the finish times for each person. We didn't have our names called but we had no idea if we'd missed placing by a lot or a little. Turns out, we came in 7th and 8th in our age group and, even if we'd hit our goal time, we only would have come in 5th and 6th!

So what were the official stats?

Time: 28:20.3
Pace: 9:08 minute/mile
Age group place: 7th out of 41
Overall place: 131 out of 508

Not my fastest race ever, but, I have to say, I still had a lot of fun! Especially because afterward Jason and I went out to lunch with Kim and her husband. It made for a great way to spend half my day. Run with a friend, hang out, eat a tasty lunch. What could be better?


Garmin Stats

Route:--Elev. Avg:661 ft
Location:Libertyville, ILElev. Gain:-6 ft
Date:08/15/09Up/Downhill: [+223/-229]
Time:09:06 AMDifficulty:2.7 / 5.0
 77 F temp; 68% humidity
 79 F heat index; winds S 10

Distance: 3.13 miles
Speed:6.5 mph
Pace:9' 16 /mi
Elevation (ft)
Pace (min/mile)
MilePace (min/mile)Speed (mph)Elevation
actual+/- avgactual+/- avg
18' 22-0' 547.2+0.7-7 ft
29' 12-0' 046.5+0.0-16 ft
310' 03+0' 476.0-0.50 ft
end10' 54+1' 385.5-1.0+16 ft
Versus average of 9' 16 min/mile

Posted from bimactive.com


Anonymous said...

Oh god, heat really IS kryptonite! Sorry it got in the way of your 5k goal! Don't worry, it's coming. And it does look fun. :)

kimodified said...

Hey Erin!
Linda told me about your interview on RunnersLounge and I surfed you up. Your interview was great, very inspirational and fun! I started running this spring and did my first (and, so far, only) 5K race in June. I'm pretty slow, but still amazed that I'm running at all. I don't feel like a real runner yet. I'm debating running a 10K in October or waiting until next year. Anyway, I hope you don't mind me popping in to read your blog, I can relate to the "I was never athletic but now I can run..." story.

Kim (Dale's wife)

kilax said...

Hey, I didn't notice our shorts are coordinating colors. Aww! We're so cute! I love your race report, especially the "downhill, sadly, not literally" part. Ha! You're so good with words. I can't seem to form a sentence lately. And I keep sending out emails that don't make sense.

You get to choose the next race, since this one failed us! Or, we can just meet for brunch again ;) Steven and I both had a lot of fun.

kilax said...

P.S. I think the heat index was hotter than 79!!!

Bayjb said...

Holy crap it was hot out and you guys were doing a 5K? You are a trooper! Glad you made it through okay :)

Julie said...

Congrats on the race, sounds like you ran a smart one and had fun which is the most important thing after all.

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