Race Report – Suds & Soles 5K


This weekend, I did the Suds & Soles 5K.  Kristin recommended it to me, then she got sick, so it was my job to check out the race and see how it went.  Liz joined me too, but more about that later.

I had a crazy weekend thanks to work (my Sunday was pretty much taken up, not to mention today and tomorrow), so I had already adjusted my training plans.  Friday’s 4 miles became 8 (taking Sunday’s long run).  Saturday, I did a 2:20 training ride.  So there was still a lingering 4 miler to be completed.  Hey, a 3.1 mile race is almost a 4 mile training run, right?

First off, after you have ridden your bike for 2 hours and 20 minutes, then gone home, soaked in an epsom salt bath, and put your legs up, the last thing you will want to do is go run an evening 5K.  Just so you know.

This race was super well organized, and I was really pleased for that.  It was also very hilly.  I was less pleased for that.

I don’t run a lot of 5K races, but I’m always trying to get my 5K pace under 40 minutes.  I’ve done it a few times, but tend to be right around the 40+ minute mark.  I’m just not a fast runner.  But I figured I would do what I could.

Mile 1 went pretty well.  I’m pleased with how my walk pace has picked up with all my training.  That’s the key to Galloway running for me – make sure that I keep the walk pace up.  My run will only get so fast thanks to my heart rate, but that walk has a lot of room to grow.  12:29 split.

Mile 2 was mostly downhill.  So fast!  12:04 split

Mile 3 paid the price for mile 2.  But I still kept a 12:45 split.  I knew generally what I needed to finish in under 40 minutes, so I kept pushing.

Official time: 38:45.  My fastest 5K since 2013 (when I ran a 38:23), and my second fastest since I had to slow down after my heart rate issues were diagnosed.  (Oh, to be back in the days when I thought a 32 minute 5K was slow.)

So I was SUPER pleased.  I finished, got my beer mug and my tasting mug and set out to have some beer.  Yes, this race came with free beer.  And good beer at that!  And a beer mug.  Definitely useful swag.  I got in a beer line and watched the finish line to look for Liz.  I knew she couldn’t be terribly far behind me, but she had spent the day in the sun, so I thought she might be taking it easy.  Got my beer, watched the final finisher cross, still no Liz.  So I figured I lost her in the beer area and went and got in another beer line, watching to see if I could see her and figuring she’d text when she got her phone from bag check.

Turns out she fell within the first mile and sprained her ankle.  So we finished the evening with a trip to urgent care and dinner at Roy Rogers.  But she should be healed in a week or so.  So while the race wasn’t what we wanted, I think I’m going to insist Liz go back next year to get revenge on that course.

Better than you were before

I don’t know what this kid just did, but it looks pretty awesome. StartupStockPhotos / Pixabay

While at the pool recently, I paid attention to a guy swimming in a lane near me.  He was an older gentleman, and to be honest, he wasn’t the best swimmer.  But man, was he dedicated.  And the longer he was in the water, the better he got.  I’m not sure if he was battling arthritis or tight muscles or just struggling to wake up in the morning (I certainly know that feeling), but it was easy for me to look at him and think “Oh, that guy’s not very fast,” and yet by the end of his workout, he had built some good speed, and given that he got into the pool before I did and was still there when I left, he probably put in more distance than I did.

It’s easy to look at someone and underestimate them, and it’s also easy to underestimate yourself.  Now, it’s one thing to understand your abilities and limitations.  There’s nothing wrong with that, and I think that there’s strength in that.  If you’ve never run a sub-6 hour marathon and you start proclaiming that you’re going to run a 3:30 marathon next summer, well, you might be a bit off base.  But you can say “Hey, I’m going to be faster next summer and set a new PR.”

And those small victories should be celebrated.  Doesn’t matter if you’re still one of the slowest runners in the race – if you’ve made improvements, you should be proud of that and you should be allowed to shout it from the rooftops.

It’s all too easy to say “Well, I’m slow.  I’ll never get faster.”  It’s harder to work at trying to get faster.  And mentally, it’s harder to say “Well, I’ll never be what some people consider fast, but if I work at it, I can be faster than I am today.”  Get yourself out of the comparison trap and only compare to who you were before and who you want to be.  Are you now slower than you were two years ago?  Well get out there and work!  You can get that level of fitness back.  Have you had a health setback and are struggling to get back to where you were?  Then set a new normal.  Don’t worry about where you were.  Where are you now?  Start there, and work towards improvement.

It’s one thing to accept your limitations, but it’s another thing to artificially create them for yourself.  Just work on being better than you were the day before.  One day at a time.

Wednesday Workout Recap

Not the greatest week, all in all.  Monday and Tuesday were a wash.  My beloved choirmaster passed away the week before and Monday night, we rehearsed to sing his funeral.  Monday was a scheduled rest day, but Tuesday, I was so exhausted that I just went to bed early.

Wednesday – Did Tuesday’s structured trainer ride.  Wasn’t able to hit the watts I was supposed to, but I did my best.  I need to get better at these.

Thursday – Team Fight Swim.  We made it through about 45 minutes before we got pulled from the water due to storms.  Better than nothing!

Friday – Scheduled rest day.

Saturday – 8 mile run.  I slept in and went out around 9, figuring getting used to the heat is never a bad thing.  This run was not stellar.  It was pretty sluggish all in all.

Sunday – Biked right around 30 miles of hills in Columbia.  This felt better than I anticipated.  Speed was relatively low, and I’ll need to work on pushing myself harder on the flats, but 30 miles didn’t feel particularly long. Considering in a few weeks, I’ll be doing double that, that’s a good thing.


Warm Summer Weekend

creek and trees

This was supposed to be a lovely shot of the creek and trees along my run, but instead it looks like a very green mess.

Dear summer,

It is so very nice to see you.  I mean, I knew you were coming, but could you maybe chill with the blasting of humidity?  That would be awesome, thanks.

Love, Me.

This was my first big weekend of outdoor fitness in a while.  We’ve had so many storms that I’ve ended up indoors more than I would like.  So it was pretty awesome to be outside.  The humidity wasn’t great, but it was proof that my sunscreen does work.

I do need to make sure I get in a bunch of hot weather workouts over the summer, since my 70.3 is likely to be pretty darn warm.  It’s a little worrisome, since my pace (like almost everyone’s) slows in the heat, but the longer I spend in it, the easier it will get, right?  Something like that anyway.

This weekend’s ride was only 30 miles, and I’m actually impressed at how not awful it was.  I was tired when we were done, but not overly so.  And today, my legs feel pretty okay.  Of course, for a good chunk of it, I wasn’t seriously pushing, but still, 30 miles.

That said, in not so many weeks, I’ll be training 60 mile rides, so… we’ll see how I feel after those.  I do need to cut some time off of my 30 mile ride to feel more comfortable with the time limits at Augusta, but I’m getting there.  I just need to stick to it.  I’m sure I can make the progress I need in the next few months.

A Post of Happy

June has been a pretty terrible month so far.  Lots of terrible things going on, both in the national news and locally.  Right now, I think we could all use a dose of happy things.  So here’s some things that make me happy.

This is a photo of my parents’ cat Taco.  He was taking a bath and fell asleep.  We’ve all been there, Taco, we’ve all been there.

Cat in a weird position because cats are weird

I’m not convinced Taco knows how to cat.  Photo credit: my mom.

In case you have forgotten, Taco used to look like this.

He doesn't like cats though.  Not at all.  Nope.

He doesn’t like cats though. Not at all. Nope.

Everyone’s favorite, The Oatmeal, has come out with If My Dogs Were a Pair of Old Men Part Two.

This is old (in internet terms – so 2 months), but still worth watching.  Brothers Convince Little Sister of Zombie Apocalypse.

Pearls Before Swine is one of my favorite comic strips.  You should read it.

The Bloggess gives the best anniversary gifts, and I just wonder how she’s going to celebrate her 20th this year.

State flags are pretty ridiculous.

And finally, this story about a little boy sneaking into a garage to hug a dog.  It has a happy ending.

Share some things that make you happy in the comments!  Spread the happy!