Sunday, April 7, 2013

Little Red Shoes (Sometimes It's Not about the PR)

Yesterday we ran the Red Shoe 5K as a family.  I really like this race.  It has a fun atmosphere, net downhill course, and benefits Ronald McDonald House DC Charities.  I ran it last year and tore up the course.  I thought I had a new 5K PR, but the course turned out to be short (by at least .2 miles) so it shows up as my best 5K time, but not really.  This race is also special because this is where the boys really got into running last year.  They have a great Kids' Race before the 5K and the boys came in first and second in that last year and decided that they wanted to start doing more races.  McDonald's also provides a lot of healthy post-race breakfast options like bagels, bananas, apple slices, granola, yogurt with berries, juices, and coffee (yes, I said McDonald's and healthy in the same sentence).
Enjoying the post-race breakfast

This year Zman was determined to do both the Kids' Race and 5K so of course Nickel had to do what his big brother was doing.  We arrived, and it was a little chilly.  We got our race numbers and tech t shirts which were nice blue shirts with the Red Shoe logo.  The kids warmed up with a short jog, and then it was time for the Kids' Race. 
Notice how the other kids are posing for photos, but our two are ready to take off.

Zman took off and quickly took the lead and never gave it up.  Nickel was in pursuit and almost held off a late charge by a lot older kid.  I think the kid just got him at the line.  The boys were both really excited to have done so well in the Kids' Race again.

  Then it was time to line up for the 5K.  Zman took off because he was hoping to get a sub-30 and a new PR.  Nickel tried to keep up with him, but he couldn't quite stay with him.  Somewhere near the end of the first mile Nickel and I picked up another running buddy who was a 7 year old boy.  So Nickel had a lot of fun running with him.  I was trying to control my frustration with being in the back and having to take walk breaks.  I don't think Nickel really needed the walk breaks, but I'm trying not to push him so hard.  I wanted this run to be fun for him.  Finally I just relaxed into the fun of running with some enthusiastic kids and was motivating both of the kids to keep going.  When we got to the home stretch, Nickel pushed it hard to the finish and got a 36:19 (not his best, but I think he had a good time).  I also found out that Zman PR'd and got his sub-30 and that JD had won an age group award and placed top 5 males. 
Smiley happy runners

It was an exciting event for JD and the kids so I was having to control my disappointment that I didn't get to run the race for myself because I might have been able to place well in my age group.  I know that every race can't be a win or a PR so I have to do a better job of relaxing and enjoying the runs with the little ones and knowing that I'm setting them up for hopefully a lifelong love of the sport.

It was also really nice when the little boy who was running with us found me after the race and wanted me to meet his mom and was telling his mom about how much Nickel and I helped him to finish his first 5K.  So today I got a lot more out of the race than a PR could ever have given me.  Besides who can resist running with cuteness like this!
I should also note last weekend's race like triumph in that Nickel was the big winner in the egg roll at Three Fox Vineyards.
We also got a lot of eggs at the Potomac River Running Store's Saucony Hippity Hop Easter Egg  Fun Run and one of them had a $10 off card so a good week of running for us.
Finding our strong!

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