I raced for the first time this year over the weekend. J and I started our journey to becoming Brew Hogs for the second year in a row, and I learned a few things.
The opening race of the beer series is the Bockfest 5k, always held Bockfest weekend.
So why not celebrate such an event with a race through the brewery district and beverages at the end to celebrate? This year, it's second, the Bockfest 5K was a sold out event!
The race starts and ends at Bockfest Hall, which is adjacent to the home of the Christian Moerlein Brewing Company, and it also houses the Cincinnati Brewery Tours (which I have not done previously, but really want to!) I arrived downtown at approximately 9:20 for the 10 am start. I parked at one of the suggested locales (Washington Park). There was a shuttle from there to the start, but having run a few other races from Bockfest Hall, I felt confident that it was not that far away and that I could get there and get a nice little warm up run done in the process.
With a few zig zags, I got where I was going and was happy about it. I did not head directly to the hall, as I wanted to get something of a warm up completed, so I did approximately 1/2 mile and arrived to the starting location with some time to spare.
I found some friends of mine who were also running this race, and we hung out and chatted a bit, including getting our IDs checked and wristbands for the beverages after the race, until it was time to wander over to the actual starting line. Randy and Andrew set themselves up toward the front, and I wandered back a little bit, not sure what kind of 5K shape I was actually in. I hadn't raced a 5K since I was unknowingly 4 weeks pregnant on Thanksgiving Day 2012 - I actually PR'd that day and ran so hard I almost puked at the finish!
I was planning on using this race as a gauge of my fitness. I was not sure how fast I could run, and this winter my training has taken a hit because of the baby/J working all the time.
Following a few announcements about the race (including the fact that it was completely sold out!), we were off. I hadn't looked at the map prior to the race, but I assumed that it was the same course as the prior year. It started off the same with us heading up Liberty Hill. Following the climb, we came back down a little and ran past the Horseshoe Casino and we were quickly through the first mile.
The second mile had a few hills, but none that you would necessarily think about as we weaved up and down the streets of downtown. In this mile, I past Randy. That was actually right around the OTR Bar, the Senate, that I keep meaning to check out. I was surprised to be passing Randy as he usually is much faster than I am. But no time to worry and I breezed through the 2 mile sign.
At this point I worked really hard to kick it up a notch and really bring home the last 3.1. The strava app mapped the race at 3.2 and I finished in 23:14.
Mile 1: 7:35
Mile 2: 7:24
Mile 3: 7:09
Final 0.2: 6:52
Not that far off my 5K PR! And that was earned on a very flat course. So I am super pleased!
Have you ever run FAR better than your expectations?