Run For the Troops 5k

Happy Tuesday!

As promised, today I’m sharing the full story of Sunday’s record-setting 5k. 🙂 After my mom and I missed our last 5k due to the snowy weather and dangerous road conditions, I was VERY excited to be finally running a race. The temps were forecast to be in the 60’s with zero chance of snow. It was still a bit cool in the morning and I ended up running the race wearing my sweatshirt.

Run for the Troops 5k, Andover MA | 2 Generations RunningThis race specifically benefits the charity Homes for Our Troops, an organization that helps design and build houses for injured veterans. At 8:45 there was a little ceremony honoring all the veterans who were present (there were a lot!), and then we went to line up at the start.

Run for the Troops 5k | 2 Generations RunningIt was a little crowded at the start, but I was happy there were signs for 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 minute-miles, so we were able to seed ourselves to help things run a little more smoothly. I knew I wanted to push the pace, so I wished my mom good luck and went to stand with the 8-minute mile section.

The 6 and 7-minute seeds were started first, and then 90 seconds later… we were off! It was still a bit crowded at the start (I suspect some people may have seeded themselves according to a pace they would like to run, rather than what they were capable of running, but oh well.) The course began with a steady incline, but my adrenaline was flowing and everyone  was running fast, so I handled the first hill no problem. There was a band playing at the top of the hill and I would have liked to slow down, just to listen a little more, but I was focused on maintaining my pace.

Mile 1 – 7:55

I was quite happy to look down at my watch to see this split after the first mile, especially since the timing clocks on the course weren’t reflecting my true time since I had started in the second wave, 90 seconds after the first wave. Mile 2 was tougher than the first mile though. There were more hills and I was beginning to feel tired. I spotted a girl passing me who looked to be around my age and vowed to try to stay with her. I had my watch set to show me my current pace and knew I had slowed down a little, but was still doing a pretty good job running fast.

Mile 2 – 8:15

It was after mile 2 that I thought to myself, “Hey, this might end up being close to my PR!” I’m not really great at doing math while running, but I was pretty sure that if I could just run another sub 8-minute mile, that I could possibly beat it. And the course finally cut me a break on this mile – it was mostly downhill or flat into the finish. So I lengthened my stride and tried to kick it up a notch, not knowing if my legs would have it in them after the hills. They did. I ended up passing the girl who I had set as my “target”, and continued to run hard, rounding the last corner and coming into the final straightaway which was lined with cheering spectators.

Mile 3 – 7:19

I stopped my Garmin as I crossed the timing mats and was ecstatic to see that my hard running had paid off – I had beat my old PR by about 12 seconds with an official time of 23:34 (avg. 7:35/mile).

Run for the Troops 5k | 2 Generations RunningMy mom crossed the finish line only a few minutes later (although I totally missed her), missing her PR only by a matter of seconds.

We enjoyed our post-race bananas and granola bars while waiting for my dad and brother, who were walking the course.

Run for the troops 5k | 2 Generations RunningAfter meeting up with them,  we all headed home, where my mom and I stretched a little – and then proceeded to go out and run another 6 miles (it was long run day!) With the awesome warm weather we were having, an executive decision was made to run to the closest ice cream stand, because everyone knows ice cream = the perfect refueling food for runners.

We slowed the 6 miles down to around a 9:25/mile pace and thankfully, they didn’t feel too challenging after the speedy 5k my mom and I had just run. Plus, having ice cream to look forward to helped. 🙂

Ice Cream for Runners | 2 Generations RunningPistachio for my mom and Moose Tracks frozen yogurt for me. It was the first ice cream of the season and it was perfection.

So all in all, a pretty awesome day for running! Here’s to hoping the Providence Half goes as well as this race did! Have you gone out for ice cream yet this spring? What are your thoughts on splitting up long runs like this?

The 4-Week Half Marathon Plan: Wild Workout Wednesday

Happy Hump Day folks!

I mentioned it in Monday’s post, but now, IT’S OFFICIAL.

Registered for the Cox Providence Rhode Island Half MarathonI’m running a half marathon in a month. Yikes! (in a good way… sort of.) I am excited, but my training for this one is going to be quick (I have 4 weeks) and sort of squished together, as I won’t be able to get any runs in during the middle of the week with my work schedule.

I figured I would share what my training plan looks like as part of  the Wild Workout Wednesday Link-up, (as always, hosted by AnnMarie of The Fit Foodie Mama, Angelena Marie of Happy, Healthy, and Balanced, Upala of Pretty in Pink Fitness, and Amber of Bold Fit Mom). I’m not a certified running coach, but I do have 10 prior half marathons under my belt, and I did a bit of research before drawing up this plan.

4-Week Half Marathon Training Plan.

A couple of notes about this plan-

1. I’ve been running pretty consistently in the months leading up to this, and can already tackle 5-6 miles quite comfortably. If you are new to running or not comfortable running 5 miles at a time right now, than I do not suggest attempting to train for a half marathon in 4 weeks. An 8-12 week training plan is more typical and probably safer.

2. It’s not ideal to take 3 rest days in a row, and then no rest days in between all your runs. This is only what my work schedule allows for me, but I would strongly suggest juggling with the days so that you are running approximately every other day, or cross-training on days when you are not running.

3. I have not included any speedwork or tempo runs in this plan. This plan should allow me to finish my half marathon safely and comfortably, but I’m not expecting a PR. 4 weeks is not a long time to prepare for 13.1 miles, so you have to have realistic expectations.

I kicked off this plan on Monday with my 6-miler in the flurries (again.) I think the cold inspired me to run fast, mostly so that I could get back inside and have another cup of hot coffee. I also felt like people were questioning my sanity to be out running in 30 degrees with flurries coming down, but seriously, it was MARCH 30TH AND THAT EQUALS RUNNING-OUTSIDE WEATHER. (Do you hear me, Mother Nature?!)

Have a great end of your week and happy Easter! Eat some chocolate for me!

What’s the shortest period of time you’ve trained for a race in? When do you think will be the last snowfall of the year? I’m hoping it was Monday, but that might just be wishful thinking. 🙂