Yesterday, I did my fourth 5k. I started running on April 18, 2010, nearly a year ago, and since then I've been amazed at how much I've enjoyed it and that I've kept doing it.
I think I've already told the story on here of how much I hated running and how I thought I could never come to love it. But running this year has been my saving grace. Don't get me wrong—I still love to ride my bike—but my runs have done wonders for my psyche. They became my "pink shoe therapy."
That doesn't mean I don't have any goals when it comes to running, though. It isn't only my therapy. I also want to improve.
My most significant goal for running is that I want to complete a half marathon by the end of the summer. That will set me up for that pie-in-the-sky marathon goal I have next year. (Yikes!) And I am making some inroads toward that goal. Most weekends, I run eight miles, up from the mile or so I was running when I started a year ago. So that's some progress.
But I'm a little discouraged by how slow I still am. (I know. Slow on a bike, slow on foot.) My first 5k, which I ran back in June, I finished at around 42 minutes. For my second, I was significantly improved, and my finishing time was 38:05. My third, on Super Bowl Sunday, was a complete disaster. Yesterday, I was intent on beating the time of my second 5k and I missed it by 14 seconds.
What does all this mean? I can run much farther now, but I can't run any faster. I don't know if there's a way to improve both simultaneously. Maybe I should do some research.
Today I should be racing Barry-Roubaix, but I'm not. I'm sore from running yesterday, I haven't trained, my helmet is broken, I can't really afford to spend the entry fee and I need to pack because I'm moving next weekend. There are myriad excuses for why I'm not there.