The race is held in the Philadelphia Navy Yard, a quick loop with a total 7 feet of elevation gain. A stark contrast to our typical trail races and training runs, we both fully enjoyed the change in pace (quite literally). We looked forward to the 5K for a little change up. I was eager to see what kind of time I could put down since it's been a long time since my last official 5K. The quickest 5K I had to date was 23:29 and that was a little time trial I did on my own one morning. I can't find my last official race 5K time but I am pretty sure it was over 24 minutes. I considered my recent training and what I thought would be an acceptable goal to set. I thought that holding 7 minute miles would be great and figured I could easily do that for the first 2; This would really be a test of maintaining the same pace I started with for the last 1.1 miles without letting myself slip. Twenty two minutes would be a good goal to set.
|The 2.5K loop|
I don't always run with music, when I do, I use an iPod nano loaded with running songs. It's more appropriate now to just call them pump-up songs because I've repopulated that playlist with truer running songs after this exercise with cadence. Each song was picked less for how awesome I think it will be to go along with zooming around the trails or roads but now specifically for it's ability to help me maintain a proper cadence. I downloaded a pretty awesome $7 program called... you guessed it: Cadence. Cadence works as an extension of iTunes to measure each song's beats per minute quite well. After analyzing my eclectic library of tunes, I sorted my iTunes library by BPM and after purging my iPod, threw a handful of songs on that were going to fit my raceplan.
|Screenshot of Cadence|
|The pre-race couple, team Tired Feet.|
I don't remember which song I started off with but it wasn't working. I was caught in a pack and could start off quite as planned. After some patience and some maneuvering, I made my way into some daylight and cruised along as I fell into my pre-planned pace. As is my habit, I didn't consult my Garmin during the race other than to accept its buzzing alerts for each mile covered. I made the assumption my pace was on target.
It really didn't take too long to see runners coming from the opposite direction. The leaders were running 5 minute miles, something I aspire to do, maybe once, maybe for just one mile. Soon, I saw Kristen, we high-fived each other and continued on until the next time we saw each other. I ran my race solely focused on keeping a steady pace, not mindful of my actual performance. I was going to know nothing until I approached the finish line.
At about 2.5 miles I started feeling more labored breathing set in. My legs felt strong but I was getting winded. I decided ain't nobody got time for that and just ignored it. Sure, I enjoy longer races, but this is a road 5K, it's short but still supposed to be hard if I'm showing up to race in it. I was in no danger of dying so I poured it on down the last stretch of road and through the finish in under 21 minutes.
|Hooray for maintaining cadence! Usually this looks like a hilly course profile.|
I'm sure you're dying to know what got my going on this run so here's the playlist, songs close to 180 or 90 BPM that I felt fit to run with.
|Fun fact: Billy Idol's Dancing with Myself was my favorite of the race, getting me to the finish line ahead of schedule.|