Coogan’s 5K

March 4, 2012 § Leave a comment

I ran the Coogan’s Salsa, Blues and Shamrocks 5K today with my fellow Hellgaters. People had been talking about the course being notoriously difficult and hilly, but it was actually a blast—like Bay to Breakers in San Francisco, there was music blasting the whole way, and the hills were temperate and rolling at worst. And the weather was perfect, a brisk 40 degrees free of biting winds. A rather nice day for a race, I’d say!

I also PRed today. I ran a 21:10, which is a 6:50/mile pace. The part that disappointed me, just like in my performance at the Cherry Tree Relay two weeks ago, was knowing that I could have run harder. (I went on a 16.5 mile run at 8:30/mile pace later in the day after refueling on a bit of cereal at home… I mean, come on.) Once again, I held back unnecessarily and ended with a tiny bit of regret and ‘what if’. I guess part of me was a little bit cautious because of the large breakfast I had. I’m not sure if the mega binge that I went on yesterday and this morning helped by giving me more energy, or hindered me by making me feel gross and bloated. Maybe a more controlled version of carbo-loading is in order for my half marathon in two weeks….

So while the PR felt good, it was definitely conservative. (I ran the Hobooken 5k in October in 21:38, or 6:57/mile.) I’m still a long way to go from my goal pace, but at least I’m on track. A few things are clear: 1. The way in which I have been preoccupying myself with my weight needs adjustment, and is hindering me, 2. I need to train smarter, and 3. I need to be more fearless in my running. (Or, as Bruce Lee says, it needs more emotional content… it needs that spark that makes it more than the simple act of placing one foot in front of another, that proves how deep and crucial a part of me it is.) All three are very much interconnected. Lapses in willpower lead to binge eating, which makes me run more than I should to try to burn off the excess, which affects the fire I’m able to apply to my track workouts, which ultimately simulate raceway competitiveness. Hmm. Readjustments indeed.

Nevertheless, the PR after a morning of uncertainty was still encouraging, and I have a good number of races in the coming weeks to look forward to:

  • March 18 NYC Half
  • April 7 Scotland 10K
  • April 21 Jersey Shore Relay
  • April 29 Run As One 4M ?
  • May 19 Brooklyn Half

On a slightly different note, but speaking of emotional content, how good was the last episode of Glee?? I’m so glad they address these issues like discrimination and bullying and suicide in the way that they do, acknowledging the urgency of creating a more universal sense of tolerance and acceptance and compassion. Life is hell in these situations, and people don’t realize how cruel their actions can be. I have been fortunate enough to not have to face vicious discrimination every day, and I can only imagine how soul-crushing it must be. The courage it must take to persevere…

Spoiler video first, then an amazing regionals performance after:

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