Race recap: Parents’ Place 5k

Song: “Doesn’t Remind Me,” Audioslave
Race: Parents’ Place 5k
Course description: The race starts with an uphill climb around Jack Roberts Park. After going through the neighborhood, you head downhill to White Park. Turn around and repeat.
Differences from last year’s course: 2012’s race included another lap around Jack Robert’s Park at the end. This increased the course difficulty and length enough for it to be a weighed course for the Morgantown Area Grand Prix. For 2013, the Parents’ Place 5k was second of the 10 race grand prix.
The race itself: I hadn’t put in many miles since my half-marathon three weekends ago. I knew the course, which is rather hilly, and just wanted to run. I didn’t care about the time, other than I wanted to beat my time from last year.
On April 28, 2012, Parents’ Place 5k was the first race I did when I decided to start running again. It blew. I was unprepared for the hills and walked most of the course. But I loved the kids’ races afterward and the fact that I got a medal for placing third in my age group.
Fast forward to May 4, 2013. I was very congested due to allergies but I just wanted to forget about that and other things for half an hour or so. Running was the perfect way to do that, especially on this scenic course.
I put on “Racer’s Edge,” a podcast by Podrunner, set at 180 beats per minute. This beat is suppose to help with cadence, your foot fall while running. I had some awful all natural energy gel 15 minutes beforehand, so I was ready. Just try to keep the beat, I told myself. Let’s see what happens.
This time, I didn’t try to stay in the pack. I kept with the beat and kept going. The hills sucked, but I was able to run up and down them.
When I came to the last .1 mile, a man was struggling up the incline that led to the finish. I smiled to myself as I passed him and sprinted to the finish line.
At first, I thought the clock said 28-something. As I neared, I saw it clearly — 26 minutes. As I crossed the finished line, I pumped my fist — I just broke my high school cross-country record by a full minute.
After the race: The kids’ races were awesome, as was the food spread. I like this race. It’s a family affair. There’s a park to play at. They keep things running smoothly and quickly, because they know families have lives and kids get bored.
Next: I accomplished my big goal this year of breaking my high school record. I don’t know what’s next. I do know I’ll be training for a fall marathon. I’ll also keep doing the races in the grand prix, so I can get a certificate in December.

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