This race should have been a massive PR for me, and up until the 6th kilometre, I was on pace for smashing my old record.  Until it wasn’t.

 

The start line

The start line

The first 3 kilometres were fine and great.  I felt good and I managed a steady pace.  Yeah, it was hot (by Scotland standards, not anywhere else) but I didn’t feel overheated or anything.  I wasn’t sprinting, nor was I dawdling.  I didn’t want to start out too fast and not have anything in the tank for the end.  Sadly, neither of my knees got the message.

Steph was outside the flat (I love a race where I can run past my home and the route I regularly run!) with a sign for me to cheer me on.  This was about 3.5km in.

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It was just after I saw her sign that I had to stop and stretch.  I hoped that stretching would alleviate the slight niggle from there, but it just seemed to get worse and worse and in both knees, which is something that has never happened before.

Somewhere around mile 4-5 was the worst and I had to stop running altogether.  I would try again every few minutes to see, and the pain was just unbearable.  I stopped to stretch a few times to see if I could just loosen up, but unfortunately, nope.  I walked as fast as I could without having any pain, but by the end I was practically limping.  I was really frustrated because I had trained well, and was really very well prepared for this race (having a UTI this past week not withstanding).

When I saw the finish line, I made every attempt to run; I wasn’t walking across that line!  I managed a very sad hobbling gait, but I did it.  At least I was faster than the first time I ran this race!

I was so glad that Steph was there, because it was terribly crowded and people kept shoving me (not for the first time today) and I nearly burst into tears as I was so frustrated.  I had her lead me out of the park and home (the wait for post race massage was insane!).

I am pretty bummed about my time, especially since I was making good time and felt really confident at the 5K marker.  It’s terribly frustrating to set out to PR and totally bomb the race.  🙁

At any rate, I’ve stretched and Tiger Balmed my knees and they are feeling better now.  Not 100%, but I know I will get past this.  I have a half-marathon to train for!  I will definitely be making a call to my physio tomorrow!

Post race ice cream!

Post race ice cream!

 

An aside about the race itself- this was the first time this course had been used, and to be honest, I’m not sure if I was a fan.  I loved the fact that I was able to run past my flat and run along the river as I normally do.  However, when we were restricted to the narrower paths of Kelvingrove Park and along the Clyde, I was shoved, punched, and hip-checked several times.  I’ve never had this happen in a race before and it wasn’t a good experience.

I also found it difficult to pass people while on these narrower paths as those that were intentionally walking the race were walking 3-5 across and generally didn’t appear to be aware of others.  I made sure I checked to the side and behind me anytime I moved over or overtook anyone as to not bump into anyone else, but not everyone was as vigilant.  I think this could have been remedied with an additional wave or two and have anyone walking stay at the end of the wave they were in. I know this was difficult to do today considering I was in the queue for the porta-loos well into the warmup and just jumped in the middle of my wave where I was able to find a place to stand.

Hopefully, if the course is still the same for next year (and I’m still here to run it), these issues will have been ironed out.  For now, it’s icing, stretching, and on to the Great Scottish Half in October!

I’m a bit sore today, but yesterday’s race went better than I had expected it to!  I PR’ed on both the 5 and 10K, so I’m pretty excited for myself, to be honest.  It was a nice day out, which was a bonus.  No rain and a high of 10C (50F) which was perfect.  The sun was even out right at the start, but it went back behind the clouds after a few minutes.

 

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I started off pretty quickly, which I always seem to do.  Anxiety and adrenaline, I suppose.  At one point I looked down at my watch and it had me at a 9’45” minute mile; unheard of for me.  Only recently have I started to flirt with mile times in the 11 minute zone, so I was confused/concerned and dialed it back down a notch.

Mile 1 time: 11’03”

I was surprised at the time, but went with it.  I was passing people which I never do, but it was crowded from where I was in the back middle, I would say.  I didn’t want to make it harder on myself and end up back with the walkers.  I felt pretty good; my knee didn’t hurt, so I just kept on.

Mile 2 time: 11’41”

What?  2 miles in a row in the 11 minute range was a first.  I tried to calm down and keep my breathing even.  I felt like it got chilly, and I wished I had remembered to use my inhaler before I left.  Oops.  When I saw the time on my watch and the 5k mile marker, I picked up the pace and landed the 5k in the 36 minutes and change range.  My best 5k was somewhere around 42 minutes the last I checked so I was very excited and pleased.  sub 35 here I come!

Mile 3 time: 12’29”

This was the first lap, and this was where I started to get a bit tired.  I was glad of the water station; I grabbed 2 cups and walked quickly through and started back up.  Of course this was when my knee started aching, and I was mildly annoyed by it.  But I kept on.  I thought about how it was nice out and hummed along to my playlist.  This was when I took my first walking break of about 15 seconds.

Mile 4 time: 12’53”

This was where I slowed down.  I had to stop for almost a minute trying to fix my knee brace; it just made me more irritated.  So I pulled it off and kept on.  I ended up walking for 10-20 seconds a few times, but tried to keep my pace up as much as I could, but I knew my knee was holding me back.  My own fault.  I NEED to remember to stretch more frequently and consistently!

Mile 5 time: 13’30”

I knew this was the last mile and that all I had to do was get through it.  I felt like I had run more, and by my watch I was at like 5 miles 30, so I knew it was getting close to the end.  I was excited because I knew how what my old PR was and I knew I was going to beat it (1:28), but by how much was the question.

Once I got up to the last stretch, I gave it everything I had left and just ran as fast as I could.  I was excited and pleased.  For some reason my dream time was 1:18 (not sure why that time was in my mind) but I was so excited when I crossed and that was the time.  So happy new PR for me!  And by 10 minutes!  🙂  (Although technically it would be even greater than that, as my watch showed me having run 6.33 miles.)

Mile 6 time: 12’38”

last bit and change 11’54”

Time on my watch at finish (and on crossing) 1:18:20

After, I collected my goodie bag, downed my water, and went to meet Steph at St. Enoch.  We went for coffee and then headed back home after a stop at Lush for a bath bomb.

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I’m not terribly sore today, although I did pull a muscle in my left glute, but it’s feeling much better today after 2 hot baths, stretching, hot water bottles and plenty of Tiger Balm and a good night’s sleep.  I have a sports massage scheduled for Thursday and I can’t wait.

Tomorrow I plan to go out for a few miles and see how I feel.  Gorgeous weather here right now, so how can I not?

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Total run mileage and steps from yesterday:

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Now I need to decide what I’m going to do next and also make sure I start stretching and foam rolling after every run!