What a difference a year makes! Last year I ran the Dexter Ann Arbor 5K as my second 5K ever in 34:24, a new PR for me at the time. Today I worked it out in 28:33-- just 8 seconds away from my current 5K PR!
The Dexter Ann Arbor Run is a local race that offers a 5K, 10K or half-marathon from the nearby town of Dexter into downtown Ann Arbor. The course runs along the Huron River and is beautiful.
I signed up for this race excited to run the same course as last year. Because I ran my first marathon last Saturday, I had planned to take this 5K slow. I had no plans to PR and just wanted to enjoy the race!
Of course, it didn't quite happen that way. As per usual with my race mornings, I started with PB+J toast and coffee with part of a banana.
Then we headed to the course start. It was pretty warm already at about 8am, so I knew it was going to be a hot race. Once we started running, the sun was intense! The first mile was mostly downhill, and my planned "easy pace" went right out the window. I tried to slow down in the middle but was having too much fun. The final mile brought a brutal uphill but I charged through it for a 28:33 finish.
Mile 1: 9:02
Mile 2: 9:21
Mile 3: 9:03
Mile .14: 9:11
I biked home quick for a cold meal of yogurt, pumpkin, blueberries and oats. Delicious.
Later this evening, I went to put my race bib on my bulletin board with my other ones. It was a mess, so I cleaned it up and filled up some empty space on the wall.
As I was putting up each bib, I reflected on the races and the last year I've had of running. I went from not running at all in March 2010 to running my first 5K at an 11:36 min/mi pace in May 2010. If you would have told me a year ago that I would have completed my first marathon and 10 races by now, I would have laughed in your face (and grabbed another helping of dessert)!
But really, a lot of hard work and desire for change has brought here today. I'm in awe of where this journey has taken me and am so excited to see what comes next. If you're looking for your next kick in the pants, remember-- anyone can get hooked on exercise. All it takes is a desire to get fit and the commitment to get there.
What were you doing this time last year?