This month, I participated in a “Run Like a Mother” 5k race, which was held by North Georgia Running Co and the Abba House, a Christian charity that helps mothers. Originally, the race was supposed to be held 5/11 (the Saturday before Mother’s Day). However, due to the threat of inclement weather, it was postponed to the following Saturday, 5/18. (This is the second time in a row a 5k of mine has gotten disrupted by the weather, haha).
Another change was the course itself. The original map was from Fowler Park to south on the Big Creek Greenway, with a turnaround at Union Hill Rd. However, due to repairs on the boardwalk, we ran north on the Greenway instead, with a turnaround just north of Atlanta Highway 9. While this wasn’t too big of a deal, the sun was pretty wicked along that stretch near 9 (good thing I brought water with me!). My time was also slightly better when I had practiced the original route, possibly due to factors such as shade and flat ground (but that’s okay!)
Perhaps most notable (for me, anyway) was the fact that this was my first solo race. I did pretty well with my social anxiety symptoms, partially because there were a lot of other solo runners, too. I even made a little small talk with some of the other racers (my therapist would have been proud of me!)
My overall time was 43 minutes. Worse than my practice run, but still an improvement from my first official 5k race at 46 minutes. I placed 193/248 racers, which isn’t too bad at all! If you had asked me a year ago, I would have envisioned myself more towards the bottom. I’m going to try and see if I can keep up with doing about one race per month, just to see how much progress I’m making. One thing I learned is that running with others in an actual race seems to be a bit more motivating—I found that my running intervals went longer than normal.
Overall, it was a beautiful May morning for a race. I’m considering doing a virtual race next month and will be doing an Independence Day race locally in July!