Within five seconds of starting the Race for Hope 5K, I was already composing this journal entry in my head and it began with, "There’s something very liberating about instantly knowing that you won’t be getting a personal record in a race and simultaneously not worrying about it." That was this morning for me; I crossed over the start line, and my head just wasn’t in it. Well, that’s not entirely accurate. A better description might be that my body just wasn’t in it; I was feeling extremely tired before we even began, and raceday adrenaline just wasn’t doing anything. (I hit the first marker at 8:03 and thought "well, that’s not going to stick." Sure enough, mile 2 was 9:16 and mile 3.1 was 9:40 (which is an 8:47min/mile for the last 1.1 so that’s not as bad as it looks).)
But you know? This wasn’t a sour grapes "but I didn’t want a PR anyway" moment. Don’t get me wrong, I’d take one in a heartbeat; this broke a run of PRs that began with the St. Patrick’s Day 10K in March 2004 and extended for a whopping total of 15 races. And if this had been any other race I think I’d have been a lot more disappointed. But it’s the Race for Hope, which raises money to benefit brain tumor research. There are a lot of survivors who run the race, as well as people who have both "in memory of" and "in celebration of" bibs, shirts, signs, bandannas, and anything else they can think of. It’s an extremely emotional race; I get choked up at least once or twice throughout the race course every year.
So, no PR. That’s ok; I’m just really happy that I got to run this race for the fourth time in a row, and that I was there. In terms of this time last year there was improvement, I’ve come a long way in the past few years in general, and it was a good day. (A tiny bit disappointing that my maintenance run last Monday had a faster pace, but ah well.) As the Prince song goes, "So far, so pleased."