When bread and honey are used together, many images come to mind: breakfast, bees, 60’s music and Moses.
Whenever I hear the number 1492, I can’t help but think of Columbus. That was the first historical year that I memorized so it has to be an important number.
So when I found that I had Bib Number 1492 for the Bread and Honey 5K, it almost seemed that something great was about to happen. And, I just ran a marathon a few weeks ago so I knew that I was in good shape to run.
And, yes, I had that bug – that twitchy little critter that picks away at my nerves and drives me to push myself. So I did what any responsible runner would do; I registered for the 5K instead of the 15k. This way I could race and aim to be great without putting myself on the i-list.
With typical pre-race fears of sleeping through the alarm, I tossed and turned through the night, dragged myself into the shower at 5:30 and waited for Shawn and his brother, Dan, who were a bit late picking me up. In the same way that leaving for work 10 minutes late results in a lot more traffic, leaving for a race late means a much longer line at the porta-potties and that is exactly what I faced: a 20 minute wait. This, of course, meant that I couldn’t warm up as long as I wanted and needed to, but that was okay; I was wearing Bib 1492 and I was going to have a great race.
But, in the three weeks since Toronto, I had forgotten how to race. I forgot to stand closer to the start so I ended up spending the first 500 metres trying to get around people. I had forgotten that the course was a hilly one, and I set a time goal based on a flatter, faster course. And I completely forgot that it does take time to recover from running a marathon. Okay, I can cut myself some slack there as it has been a while since running that distance.
However, I did remember how to pace and I ran faster, 30 seconds faster than last year, I finished 7th female (of 433) and I took home a plaque for finishing as first female over 40.
On Sunday night, I received a few e-mails which congratulated me on “a great race.” But it wasn’t a great race. Despite the bread and honey and Bib 1492, it was – for me – an average performance. It was a reality check, reminding me that I need to put in the time and do speedwork to achieve my goals.
And, in the same way that I spent months targetting for The Goodlife Marathon, I need to focus towards a specific 5k to break my barrier. I just don’t know where that is going to be.