On May 29th, I ran the Run to Remember 5 miler in Boston. My finish time was a disappointing, yet not wholly unexpected 57:35. That puts me squarely at an 11:31 pace. While this was the longest distance I had run since the Philadelphia Marathon, and I therefore knew my pace was going to be slow, I expected more like an 11:00 minute mile.
Things that went poorly:
Well, as the time suggests, this wasn’t my best race. Not that I’m fast by any means, but normally I can bang out a 5 miler somewhere at a pace that is somewhere between the 10 and 11 minute mile mark. A couple of things slowed me down. First and foremost, I probably wasn’t fully prepared for a 5 miler. Like I’ve said previously, my life got in the way of a lot of things, and I didn’t work out all winter. I’ve been running fairly consistently since the mid-April, but I’m not sure it was enough.
Second, I had the most vicious calf cramps I have ever have. My calves squished up into tight, little knots of pain, and they would not un-squish. I walked. I stopped to stretch. I drank water. Nothing helped. Normally, if my calves cramp, they will shake themselves out by the time I’ve gone a mile. This time they didn’t relax until the Wednesday after the run. This sucked.
Things that went well:
I ran it and I finished it. Sometimes that’s all you can ask of a race. However, in spite of everything, I had fun. The course was amazing, and it wound its way past a lot of Boston’s historical sights, by Boston Common and the Public Gardens.
Best of all, my racing buddy stayed with me the entire way. We had a great time chatting and laughing, but when the going got tough, and the tough got a calf cramp, she was made sure I kept going. Laughter didn’t make the knot go away, but it did take my mind off of it for a little bit!
Overall feeling after the race:
Despite the vicious calf cramps, and the disappointing time, I had a great time. The race was well organized and had a great course through downtown Boston. Plus, running with my friend was amazing and a great morale boost. Like I said, I don’t know if I would have made it through the whole 5 miles without her.
I guess if a picture is worth a thousand words, this one says it all. My eyes are closed but I'm both running and smiling, so it can't be that bad!