Yesterday was the Fourth of July and as is our tradition, we ran the Firecracker 6 in Downtown Indianapolis. This is probably the highlight race of my summer. It’s well run (haha see what I did there?), small but not too small, and a great field and course that isn’t daunting but can certainly push me. Yesterday was hot and humid. Hot and humid. Did I mention it was crazy hot? And humid?
The race turned out better than I expected. My main goal was to be able to run it without too much pain in my left knee. In the week leading up to the race I ran all but three of my programmed miles. The difference, however, was than I ran everything slower than normal. Much slower. I think it paid off though! I kept a lot of my fitness that way without the pain. In the starting corral I worked on activating the muscles supporting the knee, and from the first step I was 99% pain free. I think we might be onto something! Going out too fast is my only regret, but I ended up with an average pace of 8:44 and was ranked in the top 76 females. Woohoo!!
What I learned:
1. Activating muscles before running is not a bunch of hooey.
2. I should have eaten breakfast and had more water prior to the race
3. I really should have gone out a bit slower so that I didn’t feel like death by mile 2.
Post race I enjoyed some R&R with a good book and a 6year old bag of frozen peas that I use just for running injuries/rehab. I think I’ll continue doing most of my runs at a slower pace for the next week so that I can hopefully say goodbye to the knee pain for the remainder of this training cycle.