Saturday, May 30, 2009

Celeb Sighting: Junction Jack

Today was the Astros 5K Race for the Pennant. We met at 6:15 am in order to be at the park by 7 am. We had plenty of time to people watch and stretch. We didn't really know where we were running. I assumed we would run throughout downtown, but we ran one straight 1.5 m stretch and then looped around.
By straight stretch that didn't mean flat though. Pretty soon into the race we faced our first overpass. I have zero hill training so it killed me. The good thing about hills though is that you can redeem yourself on the way down! There were two overpasses and we had to do each twice. It was warm, but I am thankful for the weather we had! It could have been much, much worse!
My favorite part about running races like this that loop around is seeing the leaders heading back to the finish line. I was reaching the first mile marker and the leading runners were starting their 3rd mile! I am one of those people that gives a little clap for them as they pass because I'm seriously impressed. I think the winner finished the race in under 15 mins! Impressive and ridiculous. Also, once again I had small children passing me. Loved it. And I really do love the moms that are out there running with their children that are under the age of 14. I think it's great way to promote healthy living in a fun way and introduce them to their community.
So I had 3 goals for this race:
1. Improve my time from the last 5K
2. Run as fast as possible at the end
3. Honor my 1 min walk breaks and not linger longer in them and not add more walking breaks
Well, I accomplished 2/3! I improved my time by 4 mins from the last race, and by 3 mins than what I've clocked during my training. How? As much as I hated those overpasses I made sure to run faster on the way down, and I surely did haul at the end of the race! You end the race going into Minute Maid Park through a series of ramps, and while you probably should slow down so you don't trip, I sprinted. Then I saw the clock and I had to make it before it reached the next minute. I added a few walks on the overpasses. I think I made it up 2 but had to walk halfway on 2 others, and then I added a walk break at the end. I made sure to keep that walk under a min though. Not too bad.
So I'm really happy with my time! I finished 125th among the men in my age group. Yes, I registered as a man, I don't know why.
What's even better is that everyone I went with had such a good time and all want to do it again next year. There was lots of talk about when other races would be and I think I recruited 2 of them to run the half with me in January!


Melissa-D said...

FUN! I looked for you, but I never saw you! It definitely was a lot less flat that what I had expected! It makes me think I need to do more hill training!

l.borrego said...

I tried to keep an eye out for you too! Did you guys have fun?

Laura said...

Um, if you want to really hit some hills check out The Decker Challenge in Austin. I did it before the marathon way back when and it pretty much killed me, but I felt AWESOME when I finished it b/c I made it! Sign me up for running with you sometime in 2010! I get so inspired by your running posts, reminds me of how much fun it can be. Especially when you do it with friends. I was reading about types of runners- The competitor (always wanting to improve time/beat everyone), the workout junkie (does it purely for the health benefits), the enthusiast (just loves the feeling of their muscles working and the breeze on their face as they run), and the socializer (not so huge on running, but loves the social interaction it brings and the side effects of it), and I think I am some type of hybrid of the Enthusiast and the Socializer. :) I'm proud of you friend!