Race Recap: The Heart Mini Marathon - 15K

I ran a race on Sunday. It was a good one. I once again ran the Heart Mini, this year I ran the 15K distance. I have run this A LOT. You can read about 2017, 2016, 2014, 2013, 2012... I think I might have skipped 2015, but honestly, I am not sure I remember...

Regardless, this year I ran the 15K. I was not sure how I was going to feel on a longish run. I have not run that far in a pretty long time, since before I stopped training for a few weeks...  I have run 8 miles once since then, but in general, my volume has been so low!

But I really got to thinking. I wanted to be able to do a little bit of work. I knew that I could finish the distance, I knew that I could cross that finish line. But I also knew that I did not want to just go out there and treat it like a long run. This was originally planned to be a tune up for the Glass City Half Marathon in April, as that tends to be what I use it for. But this year, I am going to run the Glass City Half, as planned, but it is not a goal race. I am going to focus on 5Ks for the season.

Anyway, let's talk about the race. I did set a few goals, but one was very fluid, the other was not. I wanted to run a 1:15 (fluid goal) and I wanted a fast/progressive last 5K (not fluid). I just wanted to save enough that I could really try and do some work the last 5K. Now, I am not talking 5K PR type work, but definitely start dropping the paces and hang on to the effort as the hills rolled! This is a difficult course in Cincinnati, but I always run it. I also always say I am not ever running it again, but I am already thinking about next year!
flat Emily, ready to go!

I ran into a friend at the packet pickup/race expo on Saturday, my original training partner. Her name is Jes, and if you go WAY back to the Flying Pig and my VERY first marathon, you can read about it here: Part I and Part II. She wanted to run a PR which meant low 1:14s for her, and so we agreed to meet at the start. I was pretty clear with her that I had not been training, and I generally wanted to take it easy, so she should GO if I was doing my own thing.
Em and Jes, at the start

We started together, knocked out the first mile right around 8 min pace, which was pretty much where I thought I would be. Jes was feeling good, so I let her go right away and just stuck with what I was doing. I was enjoying myself on a tough course, observing the other runners and cheering for them, and feeling pretty good. I feel like that was the most important part of this thing. Enjoy myself. After all, I am just starting to run with more of a plan again. I don't want to overdo anything. 

I continued on, up through Torrence. That is the biggest hill in the race. It is also where you cross 6 miles and the 10K mark, meaning, where I wanted to start dropping the pace. And I was successful doing that. 7:50, 7:37, 7:23 and the last little bit was 6:57 pace... I definitely think it was a situation where I could continue to get faster, for a mile or two. I don't think I could have kept it up all the way through a half, but maybe to 11 miles? I am confident I could have run a half marathon though, which is good, considering I am supposed to run one in April.

Overall, I had a solid race, and I am happy with where I am right now.

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