This was the race I was hoping I'd have back at the IOP Connector Run a few weeks ago. It wasn't speedy by any stretch at 26:11 (8:25 pace), but it was faster than my first 5K back in June 2012, which was what I had been hoping to run at the IOP run. And it was two minutes faster than the IOP Connector run, so improvement. It happened. While I'm still nowhere close to where I was or where I want to be, I can't complain with the quick improvements over the past few weeks.
Originally, this 5K wasn't even on my race schedule for this fall, but after the past few weeks where my speed and endurance started to rapidly increase and after the James Island Connector Run where I ran much better than I anticipated in spite of some awful weather conditions, I really felt like I wanted to get one more 5K in the books to gauge my fitness. And I'm so glad I did. My confidence is starting to return and I'm beginning to feel like the runner I was before Baby B. This race made up for the disappointment I felt with the IOP Connector Run.
This is a smaller race, but it's really fun with a flat, out-and-back course from Patriot's Point to Memorial Waterfront Park and back again, and it benefits our veterans. It's definitely a good course if you're out for a 5K PR and I'll be back next year with that in mind.
Before the race starts, there's a fly over of three military planes and the post party is on the deck of the USS Yorktown. Not only is it cool to be hanging out on the deck with all of those planes, but the views of Charleston Harbor are beautiful. Sometimes I still can't believe I live in this city and that my son gets to grow up here. It really is an amazing and beautiful place.
My only complaint is that there's only a chip time at the end, so again like the IOP Connector Run, I missed going sub-26 by a few seconds and had there been chip time at the beginning, because of where I started the race, I may have come in under 26 minutes (or under 28 at the IOP Connector).
The best thing about this race for me was that it set a positive tone for my half marathon training, which started yesterday. And I really feel like a PR for the Charleston Half in January might be within reach, even if only by a minute or two. I know I'm not ready to go out for a 1:45 in the half, but between 1:53 and 1:55 could be a possibility, especially since this it the third time I'll be running Charleston and I know the course.
I'm looking forward to a few more upcoming holiday 5Ks, along with the big race in January. This was the perfect way to close out one training cycle and begin the next.
Results: 26:11 (8:25 pace), 4th out of 15 in AG
Weather: 55 degrees, sunny