Race: Publix Atlanta 5K on March 1, 2020
Goal: Just wanted to be “fast” without defining what that is. For me, in the 24 minute range. But given the day prior and its excitement, aka the Olympic Trials, I just wanted to give a hard effort. I also didn’t realize this would be my last race in the 30-34 age group, as COVID-19 has shut down all sporting events. (I would’ve had PTI Run the Runway, then Cooper River Bridge Run 10K, before my bday)
Gear: It was downright cold, so I wore my long sleeve and capris from Oiselle, plus the usual Smartwool socks and Altra Kayenta racing shoes. Plus gloves, and MM let me borrow her buff to keep my ears warm.
Gut: If memory serves me, I think I just had half a banana, and lots of Nuun electrolytes. Worked out perfectly! I am so, SO thankful to not have tummy troubles anymore *knock on wood!*
Weather: 36* and breezy.
Pre-Race: I think we woke up at 6, for the 7:35 start. I was tired, since we went to the Oiselle party the night before—though we left at 9 PM. A few memories from last night:
Fast forward to morning… After eating, I warmed up on the hotel gym’s treadmill for 0.9 miles. Went to the bathroom, thankfully, so when we got to the start line area, I was ready to go! I was happy to see local friend Becca, and Mary from Colorado! Wearing Oiselle makes it very easy to spot teammates 😊
Race: Of course, 5 weeks later it’s not fresh in my mind. I remember feeling happy to be there and running with so many people (given we can’t be around other people right now… I am so glad I savored this race!). I was in the middle of the first corral, and for whatever reason, TONS of walkers were ahead of me. Weaving around the walkers and slower runners was a tad irritating, but I told myself to hang in there. Mile 1, 8:13… not bad for the slow start, and thousands of runners in the streets! I saw Mary from Colorado ahead of me and passed her up a hill. Our Oiselle teammates were out cheering for us, which was awesome! Mile 2, rolling hills, 8:23. I kept pushing hard, passing lots of people, and mile 3 was 7:59. I knew if the day prior hadn’t been filled with walking 20,000 steps and standing for hours, and I had gone to bed a little earlier, I would have been easily sub-7:45 min/mile. I blazed in the final tenths of a mile at 5:40/mile pace (very fast for me!)
I waited a few minutes for MM, then we got our snacks and drinks and walked back to the hotel.
Breakfast was awesome!!
Results: I ran 25:26 on a long course (per my Garmin, it was 3.18 miles. In my age group, I was 28th of 205, and all women, 158th of 1,762. Happy to be in the top 10% of women, and hope next time I can be in the top 5%. Full results here.
Recommend: YES for the exciting atmosphere (not necessarily the course… too many turns and hills for my liking!), great swag, awesome food/drinks afterwards, and free race photos that were available almost immediately. The one thing I’d change is that the first corral should be only runners. Walkers are much better off in a later corral where they aren’t holding up runners (saying this in the nicest way possible, I have nothing against walkers, just hard to race when there’s so many people at varying speeds!)
Next up—a virtual 10K, since Cooper River Bridge Run was postponed til August. What’s on deck for you?