On July 27th (yes, this is a teensy bit delayed), I ran The Founders 5k in Prospect Park hosted by my running team, Central Park Track Club-New Balance. During the week leading up to the race I was having good runs and my hamstring was feeling pretty good, but I still wasn’t sure what to expect for race day. So I decided to run the race as a tempo with no expectations.
I woke up race morning with a terrible stomach ache (The truth is my stomach had been off since Thursday) and was in the bathroom for quite a while-sorry if TMI! I did my regular pre-race routine and decided I’d see how I felt once I got to Brooklyn. The race was set to start at 9:00am so I met Lora at 7:00am to ride the subway together. Surprisingly the subway came just as we into the station so we didn’t have to wait long at all. Hopstop.com said it would take about fifty minutes to get to Prospect Park when in reality it only took 30 minutes! Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad it didn’t take too long, but I also could have used an extra few minutes in bed-ha!
We found our way thru Prospect Park to the area where we could drop off our bags, but as we were approaching, we noticed a tree was down on the ground and there was blood surrounding it. We found out that a tree had fallen on a runner, hit him on the head, and he was taken to the hospital. It was a terrible, freak accident and I hope that the runner is okay. Due to these unexpected circumstances, the race was delayed until 9:30 and the race officials re-routed the course.
My stomach was still feeling upset so I went to the port-a-potty. At this point I was considering not racing if I didn’t start feeling somewhat better. I met up with my friend Grace for a few easy warm up miles and ended with some strides. My legs were feeling pretty loose at this point, but I really wasn’t sure what to expect from my stomach. I decided to go for it and run the race any way.
I lined up close to the front (but not too close) along side my friends (and teammates) Megan, Sari, and Amberleah. We heard the gun and we took off! The first mile was uphill and I’m not gonna lie, it did not feel easy. As we climbed the hill, Ambreleah and Sari got a little in front of us, but Megan and I kept our pace. Our first mile clocked in around 6:50 and felt relatively comfortable considering the uphill at the beginning. As we continued around the loop my legs were feeling pretty good, but my stomach was still feeling off. My second mile came in around 6:38, but shortly after that I started feeling cramping on my right side. I fell a little behind Megan, but kept powering through, focusing on taking deep breaths and repeating mantras to give me strength. I kept trying to bridge the gap between myself and Megan, but I couldn’t quite catch her. My third mile was 6:47 and the last .1 was 6:27 pace. I finished the race in 21:00 flat (average pace of 6:45), which isn’t a 5k PR, but is a 5k road PR and only 10 seconds slower than my xc PR. All things considered, I was pretty happy with the way this race turned out and it’s made me hungry to beat my 5k PR! Stay tuned…