This race was interesting for me.
If you look at the results, you'd think it was a good race.
Overall Rank: 320/1928
Gender Rank: 122/1262
Division Rank: 28/373 (F30-39)
Historically, it's my fourth fastest 5K time (out of the ridiculous amount that I've done). It was also about a 90 second City Park 5K PR.
If you take a look at the morning and the insanity that came with it, it's a great run.
(I got there plenty early. Brandon landed that morning; he had a turn cancelled, so he had a couple hours to kill. He was considering coming down to watch and then decided, why not run? I was on the phone with him as he drove from DIA to City Park; he got to the Zoo parking lot (where I was) about 35 minutes to race start. No parking to be found; we scrambled looking, finally finding something on a side street. He changed in the street; we hauled our asses over to registration - got him registered with 15 minutes to spare. Went to my car, dropped off our phones/his wallet. Pre-race porta-potty stop for him and it was essentially time to line up.)
We couldn't help but laugh at how crazy we've become. Brandon has a few hours to kill, so why not run a 5K with the wife? A 5K that he had initially won a free entry to, but didn't know if he'd be guaranteed to run it and, indeed, shouldn't have been able to. Yet, there we are, both lining up for the start.
Yeah, all things considered, it was a good race.
Except it wasn't.
We started off, ideally taking it easy, but clearly the pace was too fast if we had to walk in that first mile. The funny thing was, we were talking some during that first mile. Looking at the Garmin later, though, a lot of the first part of the first mile was sub-8 or very low 8s. Mile one comes and it's an 8:34.6.
Mile two is harder. Consciously slowing it down, getting into the grind of City Park. A bit more walking, but paces still solidly in the lower-8s. The split comes and it's 9:00.2.
Mile three I fell apart. Completely. I hadn't eaten much the week prior - exhausted a lot which meant afternoons curled up in bed and no dinner - and hadn't worked out much either. Maybe the constant racing has finally started to take its toll on me. It was one of the very few instances that Brandon had to pull me, rather than the other way around. 10:01.4.
The last bit is where it got weird, Garmin/split wise. Brandon started his finishing kick first in the finish chute; I started later, but still ended up crossing the finish line at the same time (yes, he was a tad grumbly about this).
I looked at my Garmin as I stopped it and it said 28:59 (for 3.19 mi; final split being 1:23.1). With the way the day had gone, I was more than happy with sub-29.
Then I talked to Brandon later that night when we were both at work and he tells me the official results had us with a 28:05. I get the .08 discrepancy in mileage - it happens often with racing. But a whole minute off, almost? That didn't make much sense.
(I will say that usually my runs with the Garmin are on local time; this one had me on Greenwich Mean Time, which was really odd, so maybe that explains the time discrepancy?)
I posted later on social media that it was the first time in a long time I had crashed and burned in a race, but I was actually happy about it. You learn a lot more with the bad races than you do with the good races. I learned, once again, that I have to keep fueling myself the week before a race or I will bonk, regardless of distance (a lesson I should have learnt years ago). I learned what constant racing can do to me - something that will be useful for later this summer, when I also race a lot and at longer distances.
I also learned that I am faster than I think I am (we are faster than we think we are), and the only thing holding us back is us ... but that's discussion for another day (has to do a bit with my thoughts after my Barkin' Dog podium, too).