It's been a while since I've been running, but I decided to sign up for the 10K anyway. After all, it was the same price for the 2.9-mile or 10K option, so I figured, "Why not?"
There were around 1000 people at Swallows Park, so it was busy and high-energy at the start of the race. Fast people were stretching and warming up, dogs were pulling at their leashes, and the rest of us were getting our iPods ready and enjoying the sun and fresh air. Scott gave me a good luck kiss, made his way to the "fast people section" in the front of the pack, and before I knew it, the race started.
I ran the first mile in about 12 minutes, and the second in about 12:30. I did the math in my head and figured I would run about a 1:15:00 10K if everything went as planned. My 1:08:58 PR (set in 2011) seemed rightfully out of reach for a woman who hadn't run a full mile in multiple months.
The run was okay, but I have to say that around Mile 4, I remembered why it is that I don't run much anymore. I wasn't enjoying myself, and I looked forward to the race being over. (It is funny how mindset works. If I had allowed myself to just walk and enjoy the sunshine, I wouldn't have been miserable. But I am stubborn. I had the 1:15:00 goal in my head, and I was determined to get close to that goal, even though I had nothing but the first couple of miles to base it on. And since I had no watch or Garmin, I pushed myself to my limit.)
I crossed the finish line at about 1:20:00, averaging at about a 12:50 mile. (My exact time is unknown since the race isn't chip timed, and it takes a minute or so to even cross the starting line.) I wasn't thrilled with my time (which I realize is ridiculous since I did not train or have a goal going into the race), but I crossed the finish line smiling; Scott and some fellow Beer Chasers were cheering for me and calling my name. It felt good to be supported...and done!
This weekend I have Bloomsday (and I do NOT plan to try for a PR or unrealistic goal), and I am still signed up for the 12-hour endurance run this summer. Those are my only races on the calendar for now.