June 6, 2010

Polo Field 5K

My coach encouraged me to race a 5K because racing helps you gauge your fitness/heart rate zones and gives you practice in pacing, racing, and dealing with pain :> So, I found a DSE 5K (3.1 miles) race in Golden Gate Park. This morning, I had a good breakfast (1/2 bagel w/ peanut butter & coffee) and sipped gatorade while driving over to SF. Then I jogged two warm up miles with Jenica and threw in three strides. I got nervous and took a gel about 10 minutes before the start.

Mile 1 included a fun downhill and my pace (7:22) felt too easy--probably thanks to adrenaline. But the second mile had a serious, neverending uphill (earned an 8:14 pace). I reminded myself that I run lots of hills where I live and kept working up the hill. It really helped me to focus on a man just in front of me, and then I passed him on a flatter section. Next, I targeted a woman in front of me.....I really worked to gain on the woman and was close behind her at the very top of the hill. My legs burned (third mile @ 7:52), and I kept checking that I was in zone 4, which is sub-threshold....Translation?? Painful!!

With about half a mile to go, I tried convincing myself that I was just doing an 800 interval on the track and really worked my legs. This part was downhill (final .14 @ 7:00 pace), but by the finish, I was pretty out of it. I finished in 24:26 and felt totally woozy & pukey in the finish chute. Later, I found out that I was the 6th overall woman!! This race was a successful 5K experience, and I'm happy with my new speed & strength training.


  1. I'm exhausted just reading that! Go Sarah!

  2. Yay!! Congrats on the 5k. Teach me your ways to speed!!

  3. Funny the games we play to convince ourselves to just keep going! I was doing that during my 1/2 last weekend for sure.


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