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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Pikesville 5K 2011

Six Years of Shirts (I've run the race 7 times, but one shirt - 2008 - is in Florida at my in-laws' house)
The Pikesville 5K is the race that I've run the most times in my life.  This was my seventh year (feel free to read the race reports for 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 or 2010 if you're so inclined).  I usually say that I don't like this race.  In fact, I wouldn't choose to run a 5K on what is always a hot July Sunday (seriously, in 7 years, it's always sunny, never even overcast... Plan your wedding or outdoor event on the Sunday after July 4).  I like to run fast races like this in cooler temps, so I tend to prefer it in March or April, plus throwing in a 3 mile weekend in the middle of Marathon training really sucks.  However, it's my running store's home race and it's on the schedule for my running group.  It also has nice door prizes (I won some luggage once), and nice giveaways and breakfast after, so I go.  Really, it was the fact that this is the only race that I've never missed since I started running in 2005 that really got me out there.  Side note: You could argue that the Shamrock 5K is another race I've never missed, but the 2005 Shamrock 5K happened a few weeks before I started running, so I didn't participate in that one until 2006.

I was on vacation from June 30 to July 7, so I hadn't run in nearly two weeks before this race.  This made it especially difficult to get out bed.  But, I'd already registered and so I got up and headed out.  Todd sat this one out, since I had forced him to a baby shower and a family event on Saturday.  On the way down to Pikesville, I realized that had forgotten my watch. The watch is the main piece of equipment for a Galloway runner, so I was left with no choice but to do no intervals at all and just run when I felt like it.

I had a lot of friends running, but in my group that I lead, I only had one runner show.  This is probably good because I totally had a bad attitude.  We took a group photo and headed to the starting line.  No chip timing here, so it was somewhat confusing about where exactly the start is.

Hot, sunny, hot, sunny.  That is how I describe this race.  I almost ran straight through on the first mile, only taking a short walk break in the middle.  I don't know what "intervals" I was doing, since I was watch-less.  The course is rolling hills in the blistering sun, so in mile 2 I slowed down some.  As the race continued, I walked more and more, but still kept it up.  My friend Lynn was leapfrogging with me and finally asked what intervals I was doing.  "uh, I don't know."

My final time was 34:08, which is my fourth best 5K finish time and my best Pikesville 5K time to date.  Yay, a new course PR!  Maybe there's something to this no watch thing - although for a race that was longer, I think I would get sick of making my own decisions about when to walk.

I didn't win any door prizes, but I did take advantage of a free massage at the finish line, something I never, ever do!  So, in the end it was a fine race and I'm glad I got up to go run it.  At least it kicks me back into gear every year after vacation.

The whole Fleet Feet Group - I'm in there somewhere.  Can you find me?
Photo courtesy of Jeremy Levin


misszippy said...

So cool to find a race you love and go back year after year. Great job on nailing a course PR.

James said...

way to go! I wish I could have run it. Right now I'm on doctors orders for no exercise because of my eyes. What's next on the agenda?

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