Hello loyal readers. Sorry I haven’t been blogging a lot lately- there is no excuse other than my full time job (not blogging) has become an absolute time suck. I’ll say it. To use an example from “The League”, the amount of “garbage time” I now have has decreased ridiculously.
On top of that since the marathon, I have been experiencing some atypical hip and knee pains that are doing an exceptional job at keeping me sidelined.
Essentially all I have done since the marathon: a handful of 3-4 mile runs, lifting, sleeping, eating, & working. Oh, and watch Netflix.
But last weekend I participated in a 5k. And it was awesome. It was the Uno 5k Carrerra de los Muertos race. This is the second time I have done this race, I mainly did it last year because so many people from my run club did it. But that was enough to get me hooked. While plenty of people from my club did it again this year – this course is amazing, fast, and fun.
The course snakes through Pilsen, & University Village in the city, its super festive, and the on course support and entertainment is fun as well. I mean there are bands, people in full costumes and face paint both supporting the runners, and running the course.
This is also a pr course for me, – and for a lot of other people I imagine, as it is a really flat course, it is a fast course. I pr’d here last year, and was hoping to the same thing again this year.
In training this summer I had hit my same pr mark during training runs – so I knew I had the ability to at least match my pr. But I waned to break it. I knew there were only 3 things that could possibly stand in my way:
1) The weather – Friday in Chicago was a cold, wet, blustery day filled with freezing rain and flurries. The forecast for Saturday was cold and windy -but at least no rain or snow
2) Halloween. The night before the race was Halloween – you do the math.
3) My hip. As I said above – I have been having some weird hip pain, and it is, in general, impacting my performance. Even on short runs – so I needed my legs to stay strong for three miles – which at this point is a feat.
Well the stars aligned. I crushed. CRUSHED my pr.
2013 pr – 27:52
2014 pr – 25:46
I will say doing a 5k so close to marathon (following the marathon) was wonderful. I still had strong well trained legs, and a 5k feels like a sprint compared to 26 miles. I remember hitting the 2 mile mark and just being like “yes! ONLY 1 mile?!” and realizing that I did not need to slow down at all.
My goal was a 8:30 pace per mile – my time came out 8:18 per mile. So a pb, and I exceeded my goal.
After the race we all went back to another runners house for drinks, and lots and lots of great food (beer, churros, tamales….need I say more?). But as it goes with a gathering of runners – the topic of running came up.
So to close out my post, and take a step back from all of my bragging – I’m going to discuss one of the things that makes running so great- and this was discussed in detail after the race Saturday.
One of the things that makes running so so wonderful is that no matter where you start, all of your runs are against yourself – no one else, regardless of how fun you find competition. In 2011 I ran my first ever race – the Hot Chocolate 5k, it took me over 36 minutes (so over a 12 minute mile) to finish. Three years later an 8:18 pace, multiple half marathons, and one marathon on these legs. Thinking about that really made me take a step back from all of my pissing and moaning about how unhappy I am about my hip, and my less than desirable marathon performance.
So on that note I (unfortunately) am taking a break from running until I get some concrete answers (likely in the form of an MRI/a doctor’s visit) about my hip/knee/leg. My plan is get in a lot of lifting, cycling, and swimming – even lot’s of walking- and also paying a lot closer attention to what I’m shoveling into my mouth.
But make sure you stay tuned, as I am now a runner who tries to cycle, swim, and “yoga” I lieu of running.