Memorial Day. What was the weather like? It wasn’t raining, that’s all I can remember. I think it was humid, and I think the forecast had been calling for some showers but thankfully they didn’t come. Rain or shine, I was going to do the Civitans 10K. I wanted to see if I could beat my PR of 1:03:45 at the Father’s Day 10K last June.
I wanted to run 7 miles that day (I’m not sure why, because my training for the Marine Corps Marathon hadn’t actually started yet), so after I arrived and registered–and changed into the way cool running socks they give you instead of a shirt–I went for a 1-mile run to warm up before the race. Then one more pit stop, and the race started.
As usual I started my run/walk intervals after a few minutes and kept them going throughout the race. The course is similar to the John Robbins 8K: it starts in the same place in front of the community center and goes up and down a few streets before picking up the canal path.
Mile 1: 9:47
Mile 2: 10:00
Mile 3: 9:34
Just past Mile 3 is the turnaround point on the Heritage Trail in front of Old Mill Park. (In the 8K it was around Mile 2.5 on the same trail.)
Mile 4: 10:03
Mile 5: 9:50
Mile 6: 9:40
Mile 6.2: 9:37
Official time: 1:01:28 (a 2-minute, 17-second PR!)
I wasn’t sure if my extra mile before the race would help me or just make me more tired at the end. I think it helped, because I was feeling great from start to finish!
The very next weekend, on Sunday, June 5, was the annual Owen Lea Foundation 5K/10K. Owen Lea was a little boy who suffered from Neuroblastoma, a rare form of childhood cancer. He fought it for several years but passed away when he was only six years old. His family set up a foundation to help others who are dealing with this terrible disease. Every year they have a 5K, 10K, and kids’ fun run in honor of Owen, and to help raise funds for the Owen Lea Foundation.
I went to this race on Sunday with no expectations. The course is hilly, and when I ran the 5K last year it was one of my slowest. I decided to do the 10K this year, and given the fact that I had already raced pretty hard earlier in the week for the same distance and then done a 10-mile training run on Saturday, I knew it wouldn’t be my fastest by any stretch of the imagination!
(Found a geocache conveniently hidden near the start/finish line!)
I arrived at the starting line–a gym in a shopping center with tons of parking–and after registering for the 10K the next item on my agenda was to find the geocache that was hidden nearby. A while back I had found all the caches along Route 17 between Route 1 and the Wal Mart, and a couple of geocachers have recently placed some new ones. (Many of them are simple LPC’s; this one was not, thankfully.) Next I met a few new Moms Run This Town friends, snapped a photo with them, and got ready to race.
As you can see from my splits, I started off pretty well and got progressively slower throughout.
Mile 1: 9:20
Mile 2: 10:02
Mile 3: 10:05
Just after Mile 3 I stopped to say hello to my friend Laura and her daughter, who were handing out water with their girl scout troop. She had told me earlier that she had been planning to run the 5K, but several of the girl scout moms who had volunteered to man the water station had backed out last minute. I told her I would happily have helped out had I known that!
Mile 4: 10:26
Mile 5: 10:43
Mile 6: 10:43
Mile 6.2: 11:06
(Official time: 1:04:21)
After finishing and chugging down some water, I stopped to talk briefly with the MRTT ladies I had met earlier, and found my friend Tamara, who didn’t run the race but came out to the start/finish line to say hello and congratulate me and the other MRTT members. How awesome was that?
This race wasn’t about getting a PR, or running fast, or getting age group awards (Laura’s husband and son both placed in their age groups in the 5K! Congrats to both of them!). It was about coming together as a community to remember a special little boy, and to give back to kids and families who are struggling with cancer. I think this will be an annual event for me.
Stay tuned for my June RunnerCache Wrap! Have a great week!