I ran the St. Malachi 5 miler this morning. Fellow blogger Connie ran the race as well. We messaged each other on our blogs on Thursday to try and come up with a plan to meet. We exchanged a few emails yesterday and decided we would meet at 9 AM near the porta potties behind St. Malachi. We mentioned what we would be wearing to each other. It was very easy for me to spot Connie as her gray and pink Nikes were a dead giveaway from her blog. It was so great to meet her. We stood in line (shivering) to use the porta potties and then went inside to seek shelter until the 9:45 start. We talked a bit about running and our kids. Both of our parents had run marathons which I thought was a very interesting coincidence. Around 9:35 or so we headed out to the start line and it was definitely cold waiting for the start. We talked about our goals for the race. I mentioned that my Garmin was still giving me some problems and it was my plan to calibrate it on the course which meant I would not have a running time on my watch and would have to rely on the splits that would be called out on the course. I also wanted to try and maintain an 8:30/mile pace. I decided that was a reasonable goal since Connie had mentioned that there were some hills on the course (they were nothing like the hills at the 1/2 last weekend, thank goodness). I figured it would be good practice for the Pittsburgh 1/2 Marathon in May as I would like to maintain close to an 8:30 pace during it. I asked Connie what her plan was and she mentioned that she would like to improve her time from last year's run but with all the distance training she wasn't sure about her speed (I can relate to that). A few seconds later the race was underway. I planned to run how I felt and that is exactly what I did. My first mile was a 9:02. I was quite surprised it was that slow. I still wonder if that split was off because miles 2-5 my splits stayed right between an 8:25 and 8:30 pace. As I was running up the hill to the finish, I heard Connie cheering me on which was great because I don't normally have people at the events with me (and if I do they are usually running the race as well). I crossed the finish line in 42:13 (8:27/mile). I can't complain! I am very happy with that finish! In fact it is a PR for a 5 mile race (of course this race was my first 5 mile race so any finish time would have been a PR). Head on over to Connie's blog at http://runsinthefamily.wordpress.com/ for her race recap (which I am sure is coming soon).
All in all today's race was great! Got in a great workout, "technically" ran a PR, stuck to my pacing plan, and got to meet a great new friend! Thanks again Connie!! You are going to be awesome in Boston!!
Keep running, you're simply the best, and you inspire me!!