LAS 5k Fur Fun Run Recap

Instead of joining everyone in the fun Saturday for the Hermes 10 Miler, I gave my legs a rest after two weeks of major races and settled on a local 5k. This 5k actually meant a lot more to me than others. Love-A-Stray, the main sponsor of the race, is a local non-profit, volunteer run, no-kill pet shelter.  They have two divisions, one focused on dogs, and the other focused on cats. I used to volunteer at the cat location back in high school. This resulted in many years of kitten kisses and coming home with my first LAS buddy, Carter.

Once I moved out of my parent’s house and didn’t want to disrupt the old man (the cat, not my dad) I immediately went back to LAS and found my wild little monster, Ralphie.

If you’re looking for a furry friend, you can probably find one here 🙂

Now on to the race recap! I headed to The Landings in Avon Lake and picked up my packet. The first thing I noticed, there were a ton of dogs, pretty sure I was the only one without a dog. We lined up for the race and headed out of the parking lot and through the landings. Things were going fast and I quickly found my pace. We headed into Kopf Family Reservation, and I finally checked my watch. I was cruising at a sub 8:30 pace and feeling pretty good.

And then my pet peeve runner showed up. For the next half mile or so a fellow runner kept speeding up, passing me, and slowing way down right in front of me. I nearly tripped over him a few times. At this point we were at the half way point, and I knew I had to make my move or else this guy would ruin my entire race. He already dropped my pace to 9:20. I opened my stride and let my legs do the work. I instantly felt like I was dropping seconds from my pace, and at the 2 mile mark, I was down to an 8:30 pace. One mile to go and I just kept moving, I skipped the water stop and tried picking off runners one by one. About 600 meters to go, and I got the anxious, nervous, omgimgoingsofastimgoingtopukebutimsocloseihavetofinish feeling. I get this feeling at every race now, and I love it. I kicked it in for the last 100 feet, and saw 25 on the clock, crossing the line at what I thought was 25:57. Two seconds off PR.

But I wasn’t upset, I was content with my race, my legs felt great, and I wanted more. I felt like maybe I knew how to run 5k’s again. So to enjoy the great run, I scanned the vendors and found myself on Rescue Row, full of puppies for adoption! Nothing says a great race by trying to take a puppy home!

Puppies and runners!

Overall it was a great race for a great cause. Race results were even better. I ended up getting third in my age group and received a $10 Active Runner gift card, awesome!

Official results:

Time-25:55 (PR Tie)

AG-3/11

Overall-66/250

After four weekends of races, I’m putting my legs on hold and just packing in the miles until Cleveland Half Marathon. My hope is to let my body fully recover and get ready for some major training plans coming up!

Auto what?

I wanted to switch things up a bit today and tell you about something that many people have never heard of. While most of my life has been consumed with running, I do have another hobby that I unfortunately pushed to the back burner. On and off in the past seven years, I’ve spent a few summer Sundays on the pavement, not running, but racing my car. When I was 15 my dad introduced me to autocross, and well, that was all it took. I spent the whole year waiting for my drivers license, not just because I was excited to drive, I was excited to race.

By definition autocross is “a timed competition where drivers navigate one at a time through a temporary course marked by traffic cones, rather than racing on a track with multiple other cars” I define it as fun. All I wanted for my 16th birthday was a helmet and my race numbers, so much for being a girly girl.

Clearly over excited

A few days later happened to be the driving school, which my dad highly suggested doing, to make sure I would like this before I started to race. After all I had the helmet, I had to try it out. I also had the optimal car to drive in autocross, a Mazda Miata. I seriously didn’t plan this all out, I didn’t even like my car when I first got it. It’s been a long time since I first got out on the track, but I can guarantee I was nervous. This car was my baby, and these people wanted me to drive around dodging cones, at a semi fast pace? Sign me up for more, I like going fast! My race number was 52ES. E-stock being the category my car fell under and 52, being my lucky number. I had the option of putting “L” at the end, for “ladies” but if you’re going to do this, go all in. I wasn’t the fastest, but I sure had fun, and everyone accepted me. I was also able to beat my dad a few times…around that same time, he stopped going….;)

Determination

Over the years, I started feeling more comfortable and would push my car harder and harder, sometimes causing it to spin out, but that was all part of the fun. It was my summer time sport that I looked forward to every year. But once I went to college, my racing wasn’t in autocross, it was in cross country. My freshman year of college, my car was supposedly seeing its final days. The brakes weren’t reliable and it was just too small to take back and forth to school. I upgraded into a bigger 4 door sedan just like everyone else, a Mazda 3, still an eligible car for autocross. I took that year off though, simply for the fear of anything happening to my new car. I finally had the guts to take it out, but only attended one race, and was extremely cautious. I’m pretty sure 80 year old ladies were driving faster than me. Last summer I was ready to really push it hard. The only reason I had the guts…I was in a ditch 6 months early, and knew if my car could save me then, it could handle a few swift turns on the blacktop.

The joy was short lived 😦 I had to get replacement tires this past winter and I’m just not ready to scuff those up yet. But next year, there’s always next year.