A few months ago I signed up to run a 10km night race sponsored by Energizer. Everyone who signs up receives an Energizer headlamp (very stylish, I’m told) to wear during the race.
On Saturday night myself and a few thousand other peeps gathered in a park at dusk for the race. I arrive a bit late and ended up having to walk about a kilometer to the race area, but given the view, I didn’t mind much.
Our warm up included the Energizer Bunny (!!) and some saweet dance moves (and a creepy guy who kept looking at me and trying to stand next to me, not so much fun).
Then it was time to turn on our lights and line up. When I registered I was pretty ambitious and estimated I’d finish in under 60 minutes so I was slotted to go in the first wave, but I probably wouldn’t have been sorry had I gone with the second wave…
All day on Saturday I wavered between wanting to run it all out and wanting to take it easy; I still hadn’t decided by the time the start gun went off. In the end I decided to run and take it km by km and adjust.
My first two kilometers were quick (for me!). By the time I hit the water station at the 2.5km mark I decided to stop and take a drink to give myself a bit of a walk break. This turned out to be a not so good idea. I got stuck behind a bunch of slow runners and it took me longer than I’d hoped to find my stride again. It seemed to take for-freaking-ever to make it to the half way.
Once there, I check my split: 28:28.
Holy moly, maybe I can do this in under an hour!
The goal I’d never admit to myself was that I wanted to break 58 minutes. Long, long ago (when I was 18) I won a 10km in my age group (let’s face it, I must have been the only runner) in 58 minutes and had yet to break it (I don’t count my 57 min split from my half marathon two years ago).
Seeing that split fuelled me on. I was able to get my pace down to a 5:30 average and told myself I’d keep it up as long as I could.
This is the point in the race where I start doing math in my head: What pace do I have to run to make my goal?
At every marker I’d check my Garmin and do some math. With 3km left I figured I had around 18 minutes to make it and I really wasn’t sure if I could. I felt good, but I was getting tired and it took quite a bit of effort to keep from walking, but knowing a PR was in sight, there was no freaking way I was going to walk. With 1.5km left I had 8 minutes to make my goal. Eight minutes to run 1.5km. Now, I normally run around a 6:15min/km, so I knew if I pushed 1.5km in 8 minutes would be doable. Hard, but doable.
The 10km route is two loops, the first loop we veer to the right, the second loop we veer to the left toward the finish line.
I told myself as soon as we split left I was going to gun it. And gun it I did. According to my handy Garmin, I ran those last 800m at a 4:00min/km pace (not quite a 4:00min mile, but…). Looking at my watch I saw 55:21…….roughly 40 seconds to make my goal.
I was going to do it!
And do it I did.
Unofficial (Garmin) time 56:07.
So, so stinking happy.
You have no idea.
The text message I sent the husband went something like this:
56:07 PR. F&%$ yeah!!
(apologies for the language).
52 out of 188 in my age group and 340 out of 944 overall. Not to shabby!
Some runs lift you up; some runs bring you down. This run definitely lifted me up. I’m so, so excited for my half marathon. Heck, I might even try to PR that one too!
Here’s the route:
You can find more Tweets and pictures about the Energizer Night Race on Storify (my picture’s in it!)
Confession: I have no idea what the purpose of Storify is……..