In 2016, I decided I wanted to get my speed up in my run and improve my bike to run triathlon transition leading up to USAT National in August in Nebraska. My main focus during this early season has been building base on the run and getting in the pool for a ton of threshold yardage in preparation for the St. Kitts Channel 2.5mile channel swim at the end of March.
In Mid–April, I will be driving up to Boston with my Girlfriend Tori to watch her run her first Boston Marathon, so I decided to sign up for the BAA 5k a few days before her marathon, and get a little road race in with her family who will be doing it as well. I am fairly new to shorter road racing events but was able build a good bit of leg speed last fall focusing on run workouts after solely focusing on endurance Half Ironman training for all of last year through September.
This brings us to the Kelly’s Shamrock 5k in Baltimore on Sunday march 12th, my coworker wasn’t able to make the race so I decided to jump into it 10 days out. To be honest, I didn’t have any expectation going into it. Last fall I did the Patterson Park 5k which is a fairly hilly course and finished in 17:42. I t was first 5k in 5 or 6 years, if not the first I was actually racing. Going out to fast seems to be my issue in these races since I’ve been so use to racing for 2-5hrs at a time in triathlons over the last few years. In that race I had gone out in 5:06 and at the Celtic Solstice 5miler (last December) I had gone out in 5:20 for the first mile and I had crashed on both of those efforts near the end. I knew the Shamrock 5k was a fast course and downhill from the get go, but I also knew I had to hold back just a bit.
There were about 2.5 weeks of workouts leading up to the race to try and get my speed back up and the mileage back up as well. I averaged about 20 mile per week in January and 25-30 in February. There was a 6mile tempo at 5:55, 5x 1mile at 5:45 and some 400s, 200s, 100s speedwork which I was all happy with and done with Ben.
Race day was overcast in the 50s with an on and off sprinkle, so perfect race conditions. I warmed up and made my way to a few rows back for the top runners and waited for the gun. The first mile is all downhill on Charles St. in downtown Baltimore, and yes it was fast! It felt like I was floating actually and the field spread out quickly. I looked at my watch before turning onto Light St. and knew 4:05 was way too fast already and slowed myself down to a 5:16 mile1. I kept my cadence up and just tried to stay relaxed on the out and back on Key Hwy. Mile2 was in the 5:40s. As I got around past the Rash Fields I picked it up again, there was some back and forth switching up of positions to this point, and as I hit mile 3 in 5:29 I surged past two other racers who had passed me right before mile 3 in a sprint to the finish. I guess doing on 200 on 30second helped with the final time of 17:09 (bib 4969). Goal was definitely to break 17 and I should have probably pushed mile 2 a bit harder but was a good exercise for a newbie 5k road runner. I’m definitely looking forward to putting in more work and continuing to chase myself!
And of course had a ton CHEEZ-IT's after - #fueledbycheez