On Sunday 19th December, I ran a 5K in Cambridge called the Winter Classic. This was a small race (less than 500 participants) and the start was 100m from our flat. It was one of the most fun, jolly and entertaining races which I thoroughly enjoyed - both for the spirit and the course.
The course was fast and flat - down Massachusetts Avenue, straight on to Harvard Square and then loop back. I was undecided about doing a race at all, and rushed down to the pub at 5pm on Saturday evening to register for it. The deciding factor was the weather forecast predicting snow!
After delivering the two dozen fairy cakes I had baked to the fire station, I made my way to the start line. It was rather cold and a chilly wind was blowing. Without much ado, we were off.
Everyone was cheering and there were smiling faces everywhere. There were also some great costumes. Besides which, you could also see people in tights, shorts and pyjama bottoms.
Perhaps the bravest of us all was the boy in a red speedo......and believe you me, it was really cold!
When I started out, it felt like I had not been running in ages. The air was so cold, it was almost painful breathing in. A mile into the race I suddenly wondered at the race distance....was it 5 kilometres or 5 miles? It was tempting to ask someone, but it was too cold, so I thought why bother, just finish it. Shortly after the turnaround there was a water stop, and I had some....yes you guessed it, icy cold water. When I started up again, I had fully recovered and picked up the pace a bit more. Towards the end of the race I started feeling really strong (that would have been useful at the start and in the middle). I thought about what Johann has written re getting stronger through stairs, and I can say that he is 100% correct. During the last few 5Ks I have always run out of steam towards the end, and have not been able to finish really strongly. This past Sunday I got better and better towards the end. The final quarter yard was a good solid sprint and when I finished, I was satisfied. I am 5 minutes slower than last June, and finished in 31:20. My 5K goal this year is to get my time back down - a nice round 26 would do nicely thank you. I will run the same race next year, and see how I've done. And now for a few final pics of that truly Rave Run. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year; Happy Holidays everyone!