Race Recap 2011 Fort Worth Zoo Run

17 Apr

It was so difficult to go to sleep Friday night.  I was tired, but so excited/nervous.  I had an early wake up call set for 5:45, and I got up with the first toll of the bells. I always set my race clothes out the night before. I get my bib pinned on my shirt and gather all the gear I’ll be taking with me (arm band, headphones, etc).

I headed downstairs, where I made a piece of toast with pb and half of a banana.  I also had an iced coffee with some almond milk.

I was soon joined by this little angel face, who had no idea what fun she was in for.  It would be her first trip to the zoo!

Christina came over to pick us up at 6:55.  I put on her heart rate monitor before leaving the house, which made for a funny observation.  The closer we got to the race site, the higher my heart rate rose.  When we left the house it was in the 60s.  By the time we parked, it was in the low 90s.  I was pretty nervous.

Pre-race picture, before I was all sweatified

Christina did a great job navigating us there, so we arrived in plenty of time to use the porta-potties (my least favorite part of races), check out the booths (lame), and do a little dancing(Leila) and stretching(me).

By 8:20, we headed to the street to go line up.  Christina was on Aunt duty, so I lined up where I thought I should be, but I was wrong… oh so wrong.

By 8:30 when the race began, we were packed in and moving toward the starting line and the people in front of me were walking.

The passages in the Fort Worth Zoo are pretty narrow, and the whole first mile was in the zoo.  So I went bobbing and weaving between people walking, strolling along at times.  I was irritated, but it was my fault.  I chose were to line up.

Despite the crowds of mile 1 my legs felt really good.  I was jamming to a little Pandora action on my new Yurbuds. (Warning: I do not recommend that you try something new in a race situation.  Sometimes I do not take my own recommendations.) I was cruising along at a 10:45-11:20ish pace.  Right where I wanted to be, but could I maintain?

For the second mile you leave the zoo and enter a neighborhood.  It is really a beautiful route, but it is HILLY THAN A MUG! For most of the first two miles there are slight and dramatic inclines, but only slight or no declines.  At 1.20 miles we approached hill, a big hill, and it slowed me down to a 14:30 mi pace.  But, I breathed through it and made it to the top.

The only time I walked was at the water stations.  The morning was chilly, and I really did not want to get water on my shirt.  So I would walk a few steps while sipping my water and then chunk my cup and get back in gear.

I did not look at the route online before the race.  I did do this race last year, but I walked and jogged it, so I do not remember the drama of the hills clearly.  I’m guessing I walked those parts.  So, I was just holding out hope for mile 3.  Surely they would reward us with some downhills.

They did! A lot of mile 3 was down hill.  I actually got up to a 9:30 mile pace at one point.  I never understand why people walk downhill.  I let gravity and momentum do their job! There was only a small incline during mile 3, with some flats as well.

My goal for the day was under 35:00, and all race long I thought I was not going to make it.  When I had .6 miles left to go I realized it would be close, so I was kicking as hard as i could.

And, I missed it… by 5 seconds! Kind of a let down, BUT, I am giving myself a pass.  Remember all those people that I was weaving around?  At times, I could not get around people, so I know I lost time and it was definitely more than 5 seconds.

My final time was 35:05.  My time last year was 45:16.  I think that a 1o:11 improvement is great. The last 5k I did in November was somewhere around 43+ and my fastest time before this was 42+.  So this was a new PR for me, and I am proud… very proud.

Christina and Leila enjoyed the zoo on their way through.  They looked at the animals.  I actually did not see any animals.  I was too busy trying not to run over people.

We met up afterward, and went through the snack line.  I had an apple, mini chocolate chip cookie dough Larabar, and a small box of granola for second breakfast.  They ran out of bananas… how rude.

I am really proud of the improvement I have made over the last year, even more so over the last few months. Don’t assume that 5ks are only for people who can run the whole thing. This is the first one I have been able to run.  I did 3 5ks before this.  I walked the first and walked/ran the other two.  I would encourage you to sign up for a 1 mile fun run and give it a try.  The environment is so fun and full of energy.  I can almost promise that you will love it and want to do another!  Health is a lifestyle, and this is one way to keep healthy fun!  I am ready for my next race in only 2 weeks.  And I WILL be under 35:00!

4 Responses to “Race Recap 2011 Fort Worth Zoo Run”

  1. Jim Kracht April 17, 2011 at 8:21 am #

    All I can say is WOW; What an accomplishment! You did it.


  1. Yurbud Review « weightsandmeasures - May 11, 2011

    […] picking up my race packet for the Fort Worth Zoo Run I was able to look at them.  I am just not a big internet shopper.  I like to see what I am […]

  2. Firecracker 5000 Race Recap « weightsandmeasures - July 7, 2011

    […] On Sunday we went to the Ft. Worth Running Company to register and pick up our packets.  It was a lengthy drive, but I do not like picking up my packet the morning of the race. The Ft. Worth Running Company is where I bought my Yurbuds when I picked up my race packet for the Ft. Worth Zoo Run. […]

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