I picked it because you can set all the goals you want but unless you believe you can achieve them, you don't stand a chance. Believing is the first step toward making what you want, a reality.
On Saturday morning, I believed I could run a new 5k PR and I refused to let the usual doubts creep in. You know, the ones that usually tell me to line up with the 8 minute milers - or in the back with the walkers - or that I'll be lucky to run xx:xx.
Despite reviewing the course map and race schedule prior to the race, it got off to a rocky start. Along with the 5k distance, there was also a half marathon race that was supposed to start first in a different area. So before lining up, I went over to cheer on the half marathon racers as they started.
Clearly different start times for the two races, yet . . .
I was standing off to the side with Mom when the horn went off. Next thing we knew, the announcer yelled this year's Lake Country Half Marathon and 5k was off!
Mom and I immediately scrambled over to the start line but I still ended up trapped behind many slower runners. In fact, by the time I made it over to the start line, I was pretty much at the back of the pack. It was a horrible first half mile - lots of weaving and/or just flat out not being able to get around runners. Very frustrating but I told myself to just focus on moving forward and to believe a PR could still happen.
Even after I finally got past the slower runners, I was still quite flustered. It was hard to tell how many female runners were still in front of me since the half marathon runners were mixed in with the 5k group. As we rounded the 5k turnaround, I could finally see who I was racing against and counted five women in front of me.
By Mile 2, I was really feeling the race and it was a struggle to maintain pace. But the only thing to do was keep pressing on - I told myself that if it hurt, that was a good thing because it meant I was doing it right.
I could see one women in front of me and focused on catching her. As we ran up a big hill, I noticed yet another female not that far ahead. So I gave it everything and passed both women on the downhill. After that, I was extra motivated to not slow down because I didn't want to get passed or outkicked at the very end of the race. I also believed I was going to get that PR - I just had to hold on a little bit longer.
Here are my results:
Pace: 6:59 min/mile
Age Group Place: 2/17
Gender Place: 4/95
Overall Place: 21/176
I was so excited when I realized I actually PR'd despite the bad start to the race. I think believing it was possible really helped. It's so easy to bet against yourself or provide excuses for why a goal isn't going to happen. That's been my way of doing things for so long. But from now on, I'm a believer. Great things can and will happen!
Mom also won 2nd in her Age Group!
I'd love to know . . .
- What running mantras are you currently using?
- Have you ever started a race late?
- Or, if you're not into running, what was the best moment of your holiday weekend?
Happy Tuesday, Everyone!