I like cutting things close. You may recall that in my last goal race I scraped a new PR by 1 second. Well, in my second big race of the year I beat my time from the same race last year by, yes you guessed it, one whole second! Despite initial disappointment that I hadn't quite dipped under 33 minutes, never mind got anywhere close to my initial target of 32:30, my feelings coming out of this race are definitely positive.
I raced well and enjoyed the race much more this year and had fun running alongside the two leading elite women for much of the race (beating both in the end). My 5k splits were not too disproportionate (16:26/16:35) and I placed 19th out of 40 plus thousand, first in my age group. I've raced three major races in Richmond and won my age group each time which is a record I'm pretty proud of actually!
BUT, the fact is I should have run faster. Mile one was close to 5:10, miles four and five were 5:25/5:24. Again I was a little aggressive out of the gate and paid the price later. I know I'm frustrating my Coach with this approach as the training I am doing is being compromised by my inability to get my pacing strategy right on race day. Always learning.....
That being said, the plan initially had been to shut it down after this race and chill out for a while. Well, having come out of the race feeling pretty decent, I've decided to prolong this cycle for just a few more weeks in order to try and take advantage of my current fitness and run fast at the Skyline 5k at the end of April. So an 'easy' recovery week this week before hitting it hard again next week. Excited.