i’m kind of a medal whore. at least that’s what my sister tells me. when i signed up for the Houston Marathon, there was an option to do a 5K the day before, and if you did the 5K, not only would you get a medal for the 5K and a medal for the marathon, but you would get a third medal basically saying that you did both that weekend.
and i wanted that third medal.
the 5K was great – it basically followed a similar course as the marathon, just obviously much, much smaller. it was during this 5K that i got my idea to do a running event a month in 2014. hopefully other people will sign up and do them with me, but even if they don’t – i’ll run them alone.
every race that i do, i pick one person that i am secretly racing against. i read an article about this in runner’s world magazine, and it sounded like a good tactic to me. i usually pick someone that is running slightly faster, and is around my same build, so that it pushes me to run a little bit faster.
for this particular race, i picked a guy that was my same build, he was a little more fit than i was, and he was a little bit ahead of me – all the ingredients for a good race nemesis. throughout the entire three miles, he would run fast and get ahead of me, and then walk a little bit, so i would get ahead of him, and then the cycle would repeat itself.
when we got to the half-mile-left point, i decided that i wasn’t going to let this guy beat me, so i sped up. i looked to my right, and guess who was running the same exact speed as me? so i sped up even more. then he did. so i sped up again. he did too. eventually, we were full out running – something that i swore i wouldn’t do because i had the marathon the next day and i needed to take it easy. apparently, he had selected me as his race opponent, too.
i’m happy to say that i put out one final burst of speed, and ended up beating him. i turned around to find him afterwards and say something witty, but i couldn’t find him. good thing, cause i didn’t have any idea of what i was going to say.
even with that last burst of speed, i didn’t run the race as fast as i would have liked, but that’s ok because i was trying to take it easy before running the marathon the next day. i completed the 3.1 miles in 33:20, at a 10:45 pace per mile. not the best, but certainly better than the guy i was racing.