Yesterday morning I ran the "Run The Greenway" 5K in Dulles, VA. They close down the Dulles Greenway (which is a major highway) so runners can run a 5K or 10K. This race is relatively new; last year was the inaugural event. It was on my radar last year but I was injured, so I was excited to do it this year.
Post-Covid Heart Issues
As I discussed in my last post, my heart rate has consistently been 10 beats per minute higher on all of my runs, but without any difference in effort. For example, a 7:00 mile still feels like a 7:00 mile, but my heart rate is 10 BPM faster.
My legs recovered relatively quickly from Boston, so I was able to jump into speed work just 10 days later. My first workout was 8 x 1 minute hard, 1 minute easy. I was surprised at how fast I was running by the end of the workout and I definitely got my heart rate up! My next workout (this past Tuesday) was 8 x 400m with 200m recovery jogs. With only 200m to recover, there isn't a ton of time for the heart rate to come down. I ran those at around 1:32-1:33 and definitely could have pushed harder. Once again, I was surprised at my speed because I had believed myself to be out of shape.
Race Morning Logistics
Greg's marathon is in three weeks, so he had a 22-miler on the schedule. (I am his coach!). I assumed I would be on my own for this race. But last night we talked through multiple scenarios. I definitely did not want to wake him up because he needs all the sleep he can get right now. Thankfully the race was only a 15 minute drive from our house. So, the scenarios were:
- He wakes up early enough to leave the house with me at 6:30. Watches me race, and then runs 22 miles back home.
- He wakes up early enough to leave the house by 7:15. Dives to the race in a separate car, in time to see me finish, and then runs the 22 miles from the race back home
- He doesn't wake up in time to leave the house by 7:15 and he runs the 22 miles starting from our house.
It was pouring down rain, 50 degrees, and windy. Brrrr! I decided it would be best to wear long compression shorts, arm warmers and gloves. When it's 50 and sunny (like it was in Boston) I am in a crop top, short shorts, no arm sleeves or gloves. Rain and wind make a huge difference. On my race weather scale this gets a 4/10. Most people would probably give it a 1/10 because the rain was so heavy. I actually preferred this weather to something like 60 degrees and 100% humidity. It was miserable before and after the race, but during the race, I appreciated the cool temps.
I ran around the start area (you couldn't get on the course) for 1.8 miles, pausing to re-tie my shoes and go to the bathroom. I had a rain jacket on for the warmup that I planned to put in the gear check area while running. I would have just stashed it in my car, but I needed a place to put the car key, so gear check it was!
- I like to feel the road beneath my feet in a 5K, and other carbon fiber plate shoes are too cushy for that; I wanted something firmer. The ASICS Metaspeed Edge is firmer than most carbon fiber plate shoes.
- This shoe is designed for people with a naturally high cadence; it's supposed to increase your stride length as you speed up. I have an insanely high cadence and an insanely short stride length, so this seemed like a perfect match.
- There is more traction on this shoe than the adidas Adios Pro, which was essential in a rainy race.
The race started and a few women bolted out ahead of me. My plan was take it relatively easy during the first half of the race with the headwind and then speed up during the second half with the tailwind. I was running a relaxed and controlled effort and about halfway through the first mile I had passed all the women who had bolted out ahead of me. At this point I felt like I was running somewhere between 10K and 10 mile race effort. This mile was flat and there were no turns and the biggest challenge was the headwind (about 10-12 mph).
As I approached the finish, I saw Greg's bright blue jacket, which I knew he'd be wearing. And I was waiting for finish line tape to appear, but it never did! I wanted to yell at them to get that tape up, but alas-- no tape! Greg took some great finish line photos, but they are no different from other finisher photos when I am not the winner.
|First Place! Where's the tape!?
I cooled down by running to my car with Greg. He put the camera away and we returned to the race area to get my award. As we were getting back to the race, we noticed that the 10K female winner got to break tape!
What a high to win a large 5K like that! But it was a quick comedown with no tape to break, no award and 30 minutes in the back of an ambulance. As for the race itself, it was a fast course, well-organized and lots of fun.
|I used Photoshop to add the tape!