Race #51 – Quest for the Golden Pearl 5K

With exceptionally cool morning weather this week, I resolved last night to get up early today, and run.  It didn’t hurt that the Perseid meteor shower was also coming up on its peak (which is tonight).  So,  at 4:30am, I drug my tired self out of bed, threw on my running gear, and walked out on the deck, both to confirm the temperature was as predicted, as well as to see if there were any streakers in the sky.  The temp was great, but I saw nothing of the Perseids.  🙁

I scarfed a little breakfast (water and an English muffin with peanut butter and some wonderful honey from the pantry — this stuff was kinda green colored, and crazy sweet!), and trucked out to the site of my last awful run… the Wildwood Greenway.

This time, Mr. Sun wasn’t gonna harsh my buzz.

Last night, I set up my Garmin a little differently, albeit still for intervals.  In the ill-fated run on Monday, I set up intervals in the Training set of menus.  This was the way I was accustomed to doing intervals with my old Garmin, so I thought that was right.  When doing it like that, however, you can only specify a specific number of cycles of running and walking, and in the online app, splits are shown as a function of those cycles, rather than kilometers or miles.  Not great, but the price of entry.

Playing around with the menus, I saw that I could set up an alert for my running/walking intervals, and after a little testing from the couch last night, I knew I’d found the right settings — prompting for run-to-walk transitions (and vice-versa!), as well as preserving my kilometer splits.  Perfect!  With my intervals set to 30secs of running and 90secs of walking, I was ready.

So this morning at the Greenway, I exited the Jeep, stretched, and hit the magic button on the Garmin to start timing whatever was to come.  I knew that I’d use the first three cycles (six minutes) to warm up and wake up.  Those passed quickly, and I made a commitment…

I was gonna let my Garmin have its way with me, and make me its whiny bitch.  When it said “run”, I’d run.  When it said “walk”, I’d think about it.  🙂

And that’s what I did.  I powered up some hills that usually cause me big grief.  I ran down the backside of some hills, extending my running cycle into my walking cycle because it felt good.  In fact, I ran up some of the hills faster than I ran down them.

It didn’t hurt that the temperature was twenty-five degrees cooler than Monday night, or that I only had the sun on me during the second half of the course.  It also didn’t hurt that I found a commitment this morning that’s been lacking lately.  Yes, I’ve been finishing my races, but on the terms my weak gray matter has been dictating, not at the level of capability I know I have.  This morning, I gave up control of that to a little plastic widget on my wrist, and it forced me to run more consistently than I have in a long time.  In fact, today was sub-50min moving time (those stupid traffic signals pushed me to 50min overall), and that was tremendous, especially after Monday’s debacle.

I’ve never tried running before my workday began, but this just might be a good thing for me!  Now, to go off and reward myself with coffee and Cap’n Crunch…

This race benefitted Water.org, which pioneers innovative, sustainable solutions to the global water crisis, giving women hope, children health and communities a future.

Race Course

5 thoughts on “Race #51 – Quest for the Golden Pearl 5K”

  1. 50+ 5k races! Amazing! Good for you!!
    I am starting to get more diligent about running lately, the Mud Runs have only pointed out how lacking I am in the endurance piece to that equation. I am already seeing improvements after a couple weeks ;o)
    I’m using a Fitbit for motivation and it works.., gets me off my arse when my steps are too low and we have challenges with each other in the neighborhood to reach high step goals.
    I love your GPS posts, that is really cool. I’m going to try and start using some of the ‘running apps’ available on the iphone to see how good they are at tracking some of that stuff, understanding that it will be nothing like the Garmin you have ;o)
    Maybe I could join you on a run sometime?

  2. Also, I would like to learn more about how the ‘virtual’ runs work.., I guess you have to have a Garmin type device to participate in these?? Thanks – Paul

  3. Hey Paul! Yep, crossed 50 over the weekend. This morning’s run was #30 since the beginning of the year. I do believe I have a problem!

    I’m using my Garmin the same way — nudge me when I need to get up and move — as well as using it for my races/running/cycling. I had a Garmin Vivofit for the steps side of the equation, but I hated having to switch between devices depending on what I was doing, so it just made sense to consolidate the functions into one device. I think there are apps for the iPhone that can do as much as my Garmin — I wouldn’t think that’ll be a stumbler for you.

    On running together, sure! Hope you like slow! 🙂 Endurance is exactly the challenge I have too, and part of what these intervals are maybe gonna help. My next race is Saturday night. I’m doing the Color Run over at Gateway. It’s crazy, untimed, and we get to run on the racetrack. What could be better?

  4. On the virtual, nope, no Garmin needed. If you can track your distance and time, you can do ’em. I’ll drop you some links for some of the bigger groups that manage these, and let you see what you like. They’re all kinds of distances, from 5K to marathons, and a variety of dates, with some being on specific dates, and others that span a whole month. They’re a lot of fun, and with the medal being the payoff, that’s the carrot to keep me returning to the trail. I told someone recently that the medals have become my Pokemon! 🙂

  5. BTW, for the Color Run Saturday night, my wave is called the “Run/Walk/Dance/Cartwheel/Party Wave”. That should be a hint about how serious this run will be!

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