On Saturday morning, April 17th I did something I hadn't done in more than a decade. I did a road race. I used to do these all the time in the 80s and 90s but it's been just triathlons the last 10+ years. There were two other races in town that day so I didn't know what the competition would be like. Thought it might be a bit thin...
200 total were signed up for 5K and also a one mile walk. I would guess there were 120 in the 5K. The course was out and back starting/finishing at the Alegent Health Care place one mile from my house - basically into and out of a subdivision. The first 3/4s of the first mile was downhill with the wind. Four of us formed a pack leading the way. We went through the first mile in the high 5:00s I would guess - probably 5:50 or something like that. I was surprised at how comfortable I felt. At the turn around it was down to one kid in his 20s and me. I opened up a 20 yd. lead on him by the bottom of the climb back up to the start.
I had two chances to look back at right-hand turns to see if was closing on me. I leaned forward, shortened my stride, "chugged" with my arms and tried to power up that long hill. Once at the top I had about 300 yds. to the finish and I saw that I'd opened up about 50 yds. on him so I backed off and cruised in. I won by 30 seconds in 19:30. That time will not win many 5Ks that's for sure, but I was happy with it in that I'd done no speed work at all except for one sprint tri a few weeks before and hadn't done a road race in years. I think the fact that there were 3 races in town on the same morning spread out a lot of competition because again, 19:30 will not usually win 5Ks.
Only bad thing was I came away with what I think is heel bruise and it's hurt now for two weeks so I'm only doing deep water running right now. Several member of my family came to watch the start and finish of this race and drove to the 1/2 way point to cheer for me which was great. Getting a win with them there was extra special and I was very thankful to the Lord for it.