What a DASH!

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I went to bed early last night. When I woke this morning I felt good. I set the clock for 5am so that I would have enough time to wake properly and still have enough time to eat my peanut butter sandwich and enjoy a cup of coffee 🙂

I have trained well and have set a goal of finishing in 35 mins. I bought myself the Nedbank Runner’s Guide and looked at the profile of the race and it did not look like there was a lot of hills, so I knew I could do it. Doing well was important though. The race  is one of the very few official 5km races in the country. The more serious shorter distance athletes actually participate in this race. I want to use this Dash and my 10km later this month to set REALISTIC goals for Two Oceans. I was so nervous. My coach has been put on antibitics so he was unable to do the race with me so I was a bit worried cos I just feel more confident when he is by my side. He and my 3 muskateers was going to meet me at the finish line. Hopefully he will be able to take a picture as I beat the clock and finish within my goal time :-).

The race started at 6:30am and I got to the venue at about 6am, enough time to warm up and settle the nerves. I was so scared that there was not gonna be parking close to the venue (I knew the up and down driving was just going to make me more nervous) so I just parked at the first open spot I saw, not realising how far from the starting line it actually was. I told myself the walking will do the nerves good. I bought myself a energy gel. I wanted to start experimenting with refueling, know I’m gonna have to refuel for Two Oceans. It was a 15min walked! I got to the starting line all calm and highly energised 🙂 !

Experimenting with Fuel...

There was quite a turn-out. More than I was expecting. I thought most people would be doing the Dischem 21km. The people seemed all calm. I had my blackberry with me. Had downloaded this cool programme called Endemonde that keeps track of your performance, so I made sure everything was re-set and ready to track and monitor my performance.

The gun went off and I realised I  needed a loo…Really need to go and new it was all to late, just gonna have to push through, at worst 45mins!! :-(.

It was a slow start with so many people and the course also started with a slight upward slope. Under normal circumstances I would have found it easy to jog/run, but everyone was pushing forward, so there was no way I could compose myself. My heart rate was way up there and it did not help me slowing down to recover, cos everyone was pushing forward which made me more nervous. I manage to finish my 1 km in 9 mins, not that it was too hilly – I was tired and I was not giving myself time to recover. If I wanted to reach my goal I needed to have finisihed the 1st km in 7 mins. At that point I realised that my run/walk/run strategy might not apply that well to 5km DASH!!!..Maybe a 10km…but not a DASH!. The reality is that there was just not enough time to recover. The rest of the course was fairly flattish although I always felt that feeling of climb and the whole race I ran at a HIGH. I could not recover. The last km I really tried to slow down enough to recover a bit cos I knew there was going to be a bit of a downhill to the finish line and I wanted to go all out for it. It was difficult! I guess I got cought up in the hype of the event, the feeling was AWSOME! I could see the people turning into the sports ground and I looked on my watch and I saw 33 min! I knew I could do it. I ran so fast into the sport ground I gave it my all, but then there was still about 300m to go and I knew I was not gonna make. I thought to myself it does not matter I am already improving on my previous 5km time which was 39 mins. I was so tired running into that sport ground -about 50min before the the finish line I had to walk to take breather. I thought to myself I now understand how some people can give up when they so close, you are just too tired to go further. As I turn towards the finish line I saw the clock for the bloody first time..I passed the clock when it said 35:55…and I knew I HAD TO RUN!!! there was still about 10m to go. I probably just missed my goal of 35 mins, but I AM EXTREMELY SATISFIED with my 36mins…will wait for the official time. I was so tired and the adrenaline was PUMPING I could not even take my medal :-).

BRONZE DASH medal !!!!

I was looking for coach and my 3 muskateers, but they were no where to be found, turned they were still in there way, so they did not get too me blast through the the finish line!

This was truely a great experience. I have learnt so much about my abilities. I know the training has paid off. I am ON TRACK with my  Two Oceans Training programme. I am looking forward to my 10km race at the end of month. It will be a different type of race, but so much learning out of this race that i will apply.

My race results (from Endomonde):

1km – 7:44 mins

2km – 6:59 mins (14:44 mins)

3km – 6:58 min (21:42 mins)

4km – 7:02 mins (28:45 mins)

5km – 7:15 mins (36:00 mins)

Calories burned: 573cal

Rehidrate 5km DASH Route:

The route...

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