It was another bitter and brutally cold day for this year’s 5K Chili Challenge (last year’s weather was just as bad). It took a lot of effort for me to make it out of bed and brave the elements, but I sucked it up and made it happen.
I had been fighting an upper respiratory infection during the week and my lungs had been feeling tight so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I had only been able to put in 4 miles that week and missed out on my 17 mile run so I figured this would be something that would at the least help me maintain some level of fitness.
Another motivator to get me out was that my two biggest fans came along to support me! Craig and Connor braved the cold with me until the race started , but they later took refuge in the car while I ran.
It was cold! The wind was tough, but I dressed for the part. I really loved the course for this 5K because it was a change of pace from mundane road races. Trail running has become a new love of mine! I often prefer it over other options and love that it provides a different level of challenge.
In the first half of the race (the uphill portion) I was sure to take it easy. This is where knowing the course really helped! I was glad to reach the turn around point because I knew I could pick up the pace and improve my time during the slight downhill. I even managed to pass a few groups of people! This is something that never happens for me!
I am a comfortable middle of the pack runner and usually end up on my own during the race, but it was nice to knowingly pass people and keep them at my tail. I paced my fast mile in mile two and kept a strong and steady pace for mile three.
Like a perfect midpack runner, I finished off in 32:59 and placed 112/224 beating last year’s time by a hair.