8 miles. Mighty Meehan 5k.
So, I've won this race twice, those wins being in the first 2 years of the event. Both years, it was a Pub Series race and I was in as good shape as I've ever been (2009, 2010.) Both years, I was chased by very fast people who I knew had every right to think they could beat me on any given day (because most of the top 10 behind me had at one point or another.) I had to be on top of my game and I was both years, peaking at just the right time. The first year, I ran 15:38, and at the time, that was my second fastest 5k ever. The next year, I ran 15:24, which is still my PR.
This year is a slightly different story.
My last 5k was the one I did in Florida, where I proceeded to run 16:29 with some of the ugliest, blowed-up splits I've ever had. So, going into this, I was going to be damned sure I didn't do that again. I wasn't quite so certain that I wouldn't end up with the same time, but if I did, I wanted it to be straight 5:19's across the board, as opposed to 5:07, 5:18, 5:33. Yeesh.
So, Scott and I drove to Dennis, fairly sure, given the last few year's results that we would likely be 1 and 2, but one never knows. After warming up, it appeared that would likely be the case, but I still needed to execute.
I've never felt so unfamiliar with racing as I do right now, but I just haven't done nearly enough of it lately to know what my pacing and effort should be. So, I went out a touch conservative and ended up with a 5:18 first mile, just as I'd both feared and expected. I pressed on and recorded a 5:14 second, which was a slight improvement and I was out of the headwind I'd had for the first. By this time, Scott was still only 20 seconds back, which is a gap, but not an insurmountable one if I crashed and burned and he smelled blood. Instead, I found myself feeling good enough to press and I accelerated through the last 1/2 of the final mile to record a 5:11 and really kick the last .1 for 16:08 overall. Not bad. Great to see everyone as well. I forgot, again, how much I love the people on the Cape running scene. Always feels like home.
I would have liked to get a sub-16:00, but given the fact that this is exactly how I came back 2 years ago to race a 5k on little training and experience, I'm not going to panic. I've got Lone Gull next weekend and the big question on that will be how tired I am or am not after the late wedding in Ptown the night before. If I'm ok, I should be able to hold 5:19's for a while and maybe sniff 33. We'll see.
Regardless, a good end to a decent week that gets me over 50 again on 6 days of singles. I'll take it.
week- 50.6 miles