Saturday, December 12, 2009

Jingle Bell 5K Run

I was very excited about this race.  Although I've ran other 5K races in the past, this was my first race since becoming a self-proclaimed runner. :) I laid out everything the night before, and I woke up several times during the night ready to go!

This morning it was COLD.  It was 12 degrees when we left the house, and I think it was somewhere in the 20s while we were running.  We had to get up around 6:30 am so we could leave the house by 7:00.  Mathis was such a good sport, but I'm pretty sure he was questioning what I had signed us up for!  Here I am right before we left.

I always enjoy the drive to Roanoke.  This morning it was really pretty because we got to watch the sun coming up over the mountains.  The sky looked pink and the mountains were a gorgeous shade of blue.  Love Virginia.  This picture is horrible, but it's the best my iPhone could do.

We got to Roanoke really fast.  I think we were there around 7:45 and the race didn't start until 9:00.  We had to pick up our packets, and I had wanted to make sure we had enough time.  We didn't have to wait in line for our packets so we grabbed our stuff and headed back to the car to stay warm and wait.  We looked through the packets, and listened to Christmas music.  I also got the chip timer on my shoe.

About 10 til 9 we forced ourselves out of the warm car and into the cold.  Here I am ready to go!

We made our way over to the starting line, and there were lots of people.  A lot of them were wearing Santa hats, and other fun Christmas attire.  A lot of people wore jingle bells (myself included) while running.  Some people even had their dogs with them.  We saw one boxer!  I snapped this picture of the crowd, but I now realize it shows you very little.  I blame the fact that I was tired and cold.  Sorry.

Mathis and I were pretty far back from the starting line.  We kept jumping up and down to stay warm while waiting to go.  Ok legs, ready to run?

Mathis ran with me for the first mile, but then he took off!  I told him to do so, and I was proud of him for running faster than me -- ha! :)  I was slightly worried that if I wasn't running next to him I wouldn't be as motivated, but everyone else around kept me going.  We ran up a few hills (highway overpasses) and this was hard.  In fact, much of the race felt hard.  I was really expecting that it would be easy for me, especially after Monday's great run, but I had to really push at times to keep going.  I was frustrated at myself for having a difficult time on such an "easy race".  I know I shouldn't get down on myself for this -- I need to remember I'm just beginning.  It wasn't long ago that just a mile or two was very difficult.  And for many people that is still a difficult challenge.  I'm showing progress (as slow as it might be) and that's all that's important! :)

My goal was to finish somewhere around 33 minutes.  According to my own watch I finished just around 34 minutes, but I remember starting it early so hopefully that means I met my goal.  I'll be curious what my chip time says.  Either way, I ran the whole time and that's what counts.  Here's a picture Mathis snapped of me the finishing the race.  If you look closely you'll see that a dog is beating me.  Oh, the shame! :)

Both our lungs REALLY hurt afterwards.  I think the cold air was worse than we realized.  We went to the after party for a few minutes and grabbed some Panera bagels.  That bagel was one of the best parts about running this race. :)

We came home, and we're still relaxing on the couch.  Here's Mathis in his Victory T-Shirt!

I'm really glad we got out there and ran this race.  Maybe I can find one or two more before the BIG ONE, but we'll see.  From here on out in my training, 3 miles is going to be my standard run, and then I'll just keep adding on the miles from there.  That makes me a little nervous, but I'm very excited at the same time.  I know I can do this if I just stick with it!  I'm really grateful to have the break from school over the next month so I can devote more time to training.

All in all it was a great first race, and I can't wait for the next!

Miles: 3.2
Time: 33 minutes?

Miles this Week: 6
Miles this Month: 11.5

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