So as some of you know, I started running in June, just for fun. I followed a training program, and by August was able to run 10km without stopping to walk! My very first 10k run was incredibly difficult-- I actually almost stopped at one point-- and it took me 71 minutes to finish. Ouch!
I kept running through September and October, though not as much or as often as I should have. I was doing 2 runs a week instead of 3 or 4, mostly every week. I figured I'd still be okay to run the Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest 10k, but didn't have any big expectations for a good time. I figured 68 minutes would be a good goal, because my "easy run" speed is usually about 11 minutes/mile.
The first few kilometres of the race were fantastic! I'd always run alone before, so it was competely awesome to be surrounded by so many other runners. There were people of all ages there-- kids, adults, seniors-- and it was just a fantastic experience. There was this one kid, about 10 years old, who kept sprinting up to wherever I was, and then falling back and walking, sprinting then walking... So cute. There were also a few parents running with kids keeping pace with me, which I was completely impressed by.
The first four kilometres just FLEW by. I could hardly believe it when we hit the 4km mark and the people running the 5k race turned off to run to the finish. (The 10k people, including myself, kept going). I hit the 5km marker at 31 minutes and change, which was pretty motivating, and I didn't even really feel tired!
I wish I could say that kept up. There was a water station at 6k, and I grabbed a cup and promptly spilled it all over myself, but I was still going strong. By the 7k mark, I felt my energy starting to flag and began to concentrate on simply finishing. I felt like I slowed down a lot here, and I was near the back of the pack so there were only a few people within my sight. A lot of the people around me were stopping to walk. It was tempting, but I had vowed to finish without walking, so I carried on.
An ambulance passed when I'd finished about 7.5 km, and I saw the woman who they were tending to. She was talking, and I assume she's fine, but that was a little scary
The last two kilometres were difficult, and I didn't have much left to give at the end. I tried to sprint the last few hundred metres, but only managed to speed up a little-- I guess I need to work on pacing.
Final chip time: 63:35. :D
Now I want to do it again, but three minutes and 25 seconds faster!( Click through for a post-race photo! )