I went to Florida for nearly two weeks.
I’m kind of sorry I came back.
While I was down south I signed up for a 5k on a whim, less than 24 hours before hand – the Gold Medal 5k.
It was 42 degrees (!!) on race morning – something I felt very conflicted about. 42 felt amazing to the Maryland runner in me, but awfully cold to the newly-accusomted-to-Florida vacationer in me.
I got to the site about 45 minutes before race time, mainly because I didn’t know where I was going or what was going on, but I got my bib and back into the car (with the super heated seats) in less than 2 minutes. The only hitch of the morning was that I couldn’t decide whether or not to run in just a tank top or to keep my ColdGear shirt on because there was a chilly breeze while I was warming up. At the last minute, after getting pretty toasty during the strides part of my warm-up, I decided to ditch my ColdGear shirt (which a very kind volunteer held for me), and I’m super glad I did.
The race started at exactly 8:00am (who are these people??). It was a small but well attended flat out-and-back course through a fairly dense high-rise residential part of North Naples called Pelican Bay. I had no real goals for this race because a) I hadn’t run in nearly a week, and b) the temps were much warmer than anything I’ve run in lately. I was hoping to PR a little bit because of the way my speed sessions have been going, but no biggie if I didn’t.
I went out at what felt like a comfortably fast pace – it is a 5k, after all. The rough plan was to “warm up” in the first mile, escalate a bit in the second, and then push it in the final mile. I knew I was pushing the pace a bit too much in the first mile, but I fell in with two or three other runners around 1/2 a mile in at the same pace and just cruised. Well, as we’ve discovered before, I suck at pacing. Like, seriously suck.
Umm, WHAT?!? Yes, the course was a bit long (I knew that third mile felt like it went on foreverrrrrr) but OMG I FINALLY GOT SUB-30:00!!! On a long course, no less!!
I did have to stop to walk three times in the second half of the third mile, twice because of dizziness/nausea, I think from the “heat” (my dumb ass wore ColdGear tights instead of shorts) and once because side-stitches made it painful to breath, but I don’t think I could’ve eeked out too much more that morning.
So, I was super giddy, if not a bit breathless, after the race 😊 I had my bagel and green banana (woohoo!), made a few phone calls and sent a few text messages, and then decided to go over to watch the end of the awards ceremony. And then THIS happened:
I’m sorry, WHAT????? 😮😮😮
I NEVER even come CLOSE to placing in my age group at home – which is why I didn’t even bother to check the placements list after the race!! I wish I had though because I missed my first (and probably only) awards ceremony 😢 My official net time was 29:38.5. I still got my trophy though 😊
Best vacation souvenir EVER!