Last weekend I participated in an annual benefit race called 'Run, Rock and Stroll' in Des Moines. I hadn't run a 10k in almost two years, in which I averaged a 10-minute mile. My goal for this race was to average eight-minute miles and keep a steady pace. Although I was able to maintain that pace and come in first in my age group (yes, this is a first, but I will admit that there were not a lot of people participating in the 10k), there were multiple times throughout the race when I questioned my sanity. I also contemplated running the 5k (which was running along the same route for a while) during the first fifteen minutes of the race.
You see, dear readers, I was in NO shape to run that little race. Why, you ask? This overpronator drank a little too much and was out late the night before. STUPID. I've never missed a race due to a hangover or anything else, and I was not about to miss this one. I was going to get through it, even if I had to crawl (while ralphing all over the place).
Luckily, the weather was perfect - light mist and 60 degrees. And I was fortunate enough to keep a steady pace, thanks to another runner ahead of me. Without her, I probably would've not averaged that pace, as she motivated me to keep up. I also slowed down for water stops this time, which is something I rarely do. I'm always afraid that it's going to hurt my time; it actually helped me get through the race, especially in the last two miles.
So, for future reference, I will *try* to abstain from excessive drinking before races. Not a good idea. I will slow down and partake in the consumption of water. And I will continue to work hard to improve my time.
P.S. I've been adding tons of hills to my runs. I think it's helping...I've come to look forward to running them, as they break up the monotony. Plus, as an added bonus, my legs are getting toned. Bring on the hills!