This morning I headed off to the Race for the Cure in downtown Spokane. The weather was absolutely gorgeous...couldn't have asked for better running weather. Somewhere around 55' and sunny. I was really surprised to see just how big the race was. With over 9,000 participants, the race itself was a massive undertaking for the organizers.
From my p.o.v there were 2 sides to this race. As an event it was just awesome. Really positive and uplifting. We heard stories from breast cancer survivors as we waited for the race to start. All the cancer survivors who were present released a pink helium balloon just before the start....it was the kind of event that you want to take your sister or daughter too. Very empowering and hopeful.
But from a racing point of view...hmmm...not sure if I would race this one again. Don't get me wrong...the race organizers and volunteers did a great job considering the number of people who entered the race. They had coralled people who had planned to race in a separate area to everyone else. If you had a chip timer..(like me) you had to pass through a different start and finish line archway...( you can see it in my blurry cell phone picture above...the lovely boring black metal one to the left). So they had intended to give racers a head start of everyone else but unfortunately it just didn't work that way. When the race started the walkers etc merged across into the path of the chip runners so it caused a lot of weaving and dodging for the first half mile. I heard a lot of runners complaining that they were using this race to qualify for Second seeding at Bloomsday so having to dodge walkers would really have been a bummer if you were running to hit a certain qualifying time.
My goal was to try and run under 25 mins. My 5k PR is 25:45 from last years Jingle Bell run so I was aiming for 24:XX. Considering I haven't done any speed work whatsoever this may have been a little ambitious. I feel like marathon training is making me slow. But I wanted to run sub 8 min miles...I guess it just wasn't meant to be today!
Mile 1 - 8:11 mpm ( dang you pesky walkers..out of the way!)
Mile 2 - 7:58 mpm (better)
Mile 3 - 8:09 mpm (eeekkk-where did all these walkers come from again???? More dodging)
Last 0.1 - 8:30 mpm. (I had given up trying to dodge people and just wanted to be done)
So apparently there was an option for people to walk a one mile loop instead of walk the whole 5k, so they rejoined the rest of the folks doing the 5 km about 0.5 miles from the end. that again caused a bit of chaos trying to weave around a new set of people. By that time I was T.I.R.E.D.
Anyway...I didn't make it under 25 mins...boohoo. I missed out by 7 seconds but its still a PR so I'll take it.
3.1 miles - 25:06 mins - Av pace 8:o5 mpm