9 miles. Irish Pub 5.25 Miler.
Went into this not knowing what to expect, but hoping for something just under 5:30 pace for the distance. With my (lack of) training and my last race being the abysmal Ribfest 5 Miler where I ran as slow as I have in 10+ years, frankly, I was a bit frightened and not especially optimistic.
Still, the air was cool and rainy and I'd been running fairly well of late, albeit irregularly.
The horn sounded and we were off. I started out in 10th or 11th and we hit the mile in 5:18. I felt fine. The pack broke into a couple groups and I led for a bit at mile 2 and no one was going away with it. By 3, I was still solidly on 5:19 pace and I was with 3 other younger guys. They went from me on a couple of downhills and duked it out on their own, a mere 100 meters ahead. I just couldn't make it up and settled for 4th in 28:02. I really couldn't be happier. It's one of my faster times on the course and I ran 5:19 for the whole thing and didn't get hurt. A very happy surprise gift on this 15th anniversary of sobriety for me. Now I just want a win.