On Sunday I ran the 37th Annual Brian’s Run, a well-attended, well-organized local race in West Chester, PA. The race went really, really well. The sun was shining, the crowd support was fantastic, and oh yeah… I ran a HUGE PR!! I finished the 5 mile course in 39:11, nearly a minute and 20 seconds faster than my previous best time from the Swarthmore 8K in July. Woohoo!!
There were so many good things about Sunday’s race. My brother Billy ran with me (well, not WITH me because he took off at the start and beat me by 20 seconds, but still, he was there!) and Matt and Piper formed our personal cheering section. I passed them about a mile and a quarter into the race and smiled for the camera… I think my expression pretty much sums up how I was feeling!
Control was my keyword for the 5 mile course. I have often struggled with going out too fast in a 5K and then feeling really terrible with a mile to go. I did not want to make that mistake in a 5 mile race so I really focused on making sure that my first mile was comfortable, relaxed and under control. I checked my Garmin throughout the first mile and knew that I was going fast (it ended up being a 7:33 split), but I felt really good so I just rolled with it.
Much to my surprise, I maintained that first mile high straight through the second mile, completing that in a time of 7:42. Then the course plunged down a big hill and the fun began… hill after hill after hill! (Or at least it felt that way.) I definitely slowed down for miles 3 and 4, but I still felt strong and in control. I’ve been doing a lot of hill work in my neighborhood so hills are no longer as intimidating as they used to be. 🙂
Because I had banked some time during the first two miles I wasn’t too worried when my Garmin beeped an 8:09 and 8:16 for my middle miles. Ok, maybe I was a little worried by that 8:16, but by then I had just a mile to go! After a final hill climb I returned to flatter ground and completed the race with a lap around the big red Henderson High School track. It was a fun way to end a race! Shockingly, I somehow picked up my pace enough during the last mile to put down my fastest split of the day. I didn’t see that coming!
I finished with an official time of 39:11, good enough for 133rd overall out of 582 runners, 31st female and 15th in my age group. The full results are here… check out that first place finish time of 24:35, whoa!
All in all Brian’s Run was a great experience and I definitely hope to run this race again next year. After a fall full of 5Ks it was exciting to compete at a different distance and very gratifying when I ran such a big PR. Oh, and I forgot to mention that I totally wiped out on a sidewalk grate in Philly after a party on Saturday night, falling on my butt and side so hard that I cut my elbow through a winter jacket and sweater, so I guess I’m also thankful that I was even ABLE to run on Sunday! (City dwellers know, I’m sure, that metal grates get very slippery when it’s raining… I learned my lesson Saturday night!)
My next race will be the first of the Athlete’s Closet Winter Series 5Ks next Saturday morning. After last weekend’s double races I’m just planning on going out and having fun!
Miles since last post: 16.1
Days since last post: 3
Avg. Daily Miles since 7/18/13: 4.87
2014 TOTAL MILES: 1672.4
• Jingle Elf 2 Mile (12/5/14)
• Seven Summits Turkey Trot (11/27/14)
• Metal Run 5K (11/8/14)
• Trinity Berwyn 5K (11/1/14) [New PR!]
• Bark in the Park 5K (10/25/14)
• Fueled Up & Fired Up 5K (10/18/14)
• Martin’s Run 5K (10/5/14)
• Haverford Township Day 5K (9/27/14)
• Run A Muck 5K-ish Trail Race (9/20/14)
• Talk 5K Trail Run (9/13/14)
• Pickle in the Streets 5K (8/28/14) [PR]
• Radnor Red Steeplechase 5K (8/17/14)
• Riddlewood Swim Club 5K (8/3/14)
• Swarthmore Lions Independence Eve 8K (7/18/14)
• Cam’s ‘Moonlight’ 5K (7/10/14)
• Media 5 Miler (6/20/14)
• Radnor Conservancy 5K Trail Run (6/1/14)
• Rocky Run 5K Trail Run (5/30/14)
• Run for Victory 5K (5/18/14) [PR]
• Elwyn 5K (5/3/14)
• St. Tim’s 5K (4/26/14)
• Rick’s Run 5K (4/19/14)
• Las Vegas Security 5K (4/3/14)
• Color Out Cancer 5K (3/30/14)
• Athlete’s Closet March 5 Miler (3/1/14)
• Athlete’s Closet February 5K (2/1/14)
• Athlete’s Closet January 5K (1/4/14)
• New Year’s Eve 5K at the YMCA (12/31/13) [PR]
• Athlete’s Closet December 5K (12/14/13)
• Turkey Trot 5K (11/28/13)
• Trinity Presbyterian 5K (11/2/13)
• Oy Vey 5K (10/27/13) [PR]
• Fueled Up & Fired Up 5K (10/19/13)
• Run-a-Muck 5K (9/21/13)
• The Challenge Begins: 100 Mile iPad Mini Challenge (7/23/13)