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Saturday, May 24, 2014

I survived Greek Fest 5k

They're called endorphins, and they mask pain! 
Sorry, just had a revelation about that. I managed to get through the Greek Fest 5k slowly but not too painfully! Really, the pain was almost unnoticeable during the race. I was too busy trying to catch my breath and marveling at how quickly one loses running fitness...

This year was actually one of the best as far as I remember Greek Fest. It was not horribly hot, and although it was humid, the weather has definitely been much worse in past years. David and I met in the parking lot after work, and had plenty of time to run to the port-a-potties, socialize, and get in a warm-up. I get off work at 6 and still had to change clothes, drive to the race, and park for a race that starts at 7pm, but since there is a one-mile race before the 5k, there wasn't a time crunch.
So much sun in my eyes.

I was nervous about warming up first, since I didn't want to do any extra damage to my hip, but I knew I'd be sorry if I didn't, so I jogged about a mile (with some breaks to stop and talk to friends). Right before the start, I saw Andy from our running group. He's always in the "next-fastest" group at the track, but recently has been picking his speed up. He told me his goal was under 21 minutes, and I told him I'd try to keep up!

New Orleans Track Club has chip timed gun timed races, so I tried to get sort of near the front, but it was tough with the crowd. This is a popular 5k. But being pushed back helped me stay at a reasonable pace when the gun went off. The first mile was all passing people who slowed down - many people! I wasn't able to settle in without weaving until after the turn around (it's an out-and -back). Right about then, I caught up to Andy. He looked strong and smooth, so I stuck with him. We both hit rough patches in the last mile - Andy running out of steam, me suddenly feeling a loud hip click and mildly panicking - but were able to kind of help each other through. I was really impressed with Andy's race - I lost him at the finish, but it was a big PR for him and he hung tough at the finish.

We had been a good eight or ten yards behind a lady for most of the last mile, and at the 3 mile mark, I decided to try to outkick her. I really hadn't drained my tank, and shockingly, I easily passed her at the finish. I have the worst kick in the world, so that surprised me. I ran a 20:54, didn't feel terrible, and today my hip didn't make me want to die. And, as one of the top 100 finishers, I got a blue wineglass at the finish, which an NOTC staffer filled with wine for me (I have some great runner friends!).

So I'm calling that race a success. I can't be begging for PRs anymore - those days are done. I'm happy with running a 5k under 21 minutes off of nothing but muscle memory! Isn't the body kind of amazing?



15 comments:

  1. I'd be happy with a sub-21 too. Oh, who am I kidding? I'd be ecstatic. And you did it injured and on the cusp of surgery. That's pretty impressive.

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  2. 20:54 on little or no training? You are indeed a natural lol

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  3. What does that mean when you say "your hip didn't make you want to die"? That it hurts like a bitch but you can still walk around? That it feels totally awesome? That loud click was probably the tear catching and tearing some more...just speaking from my experience and my conversations with my surgeon. I'm so glad you've opted for the surgery. When is it happening? Hoping it goes great and your recovery is swift and complete!

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    1. It means - I can hear clicking and sort of sliding around when I use my hip. The clicks are painful, but not so painful that I change my gait. Once I start limping or changing my gait, I stop activity. That's why I've been sticking to such low mileage. I am opting for surgery, but I'm second guessing myself. My doctor keeps saying that he prefers leaving the tear alone and managing pain. And since I AM able to run on it a little, I wonder if I'm making the right choice?

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    2. Never mind everything I just said. It hurts like the dickens today.

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    3. I would be concerned that running a 20-min 5k on a labral tear would do additional damage. Do the surgery and become a PT pro. Don't fuck around. You don't want to wind up getting MY kind of surgery. My hip deterioration made its presence known first with an undiagnosed-at-the-time labral tear (they didn't know what a labrum was way back then according to my Ortho). "Managing the pain" in something that is a road to deterioration is BS in my completely unprofessional opinion. I've just lived through it though. Hopefully that means something ;-) You're speedy and driven and you like to run. Get the surgery. Post-PT you'll be setting PRs. *stepping off soapbox* :)

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    4. Blogger just ate my six paragraph reply, grrr. The gist of it was, I agree with you, and I'm questioning some of the things my doctor has said (like can't make it worse...manage pain...etc). I'll blog about my thoughts later - this reply practically was a full post the first time around!

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    5. Feel free to email me if you want to talk about any of this stuff. And I know Elizabeth would be happy to share her experiences with you, too.

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  4. Awesome, lady! It's indeed pretty amazing what you can do just based on years of laying the foundation.

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  5. I thought you hadn't been running at all - and then you go out and post a 20min 5K. What are you ... wonder woman? Hope you're still walking today after the the "click". Good job Grace!

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    1. After I started taking gabapentin, I started running again. So three or four weeks ago. I have only been able to tolerate every other day and only short distances at a slow pace.

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  6. Muscle memory, my goodness!

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  7. I didn't even know you were back to running and you pulled off a sub- 7 min pace 5k?! I don't think your PR days are behind you. You just need to get your body back to good health and some solid training. Don't give up hope! You've got the natural talent that's for sure!

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  8. Whoa. That wine glass is pimp! Nice work!

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  9. I can't believe you went sub 21 on no training! You need to be running again! Sorry to read that you have to do surgery. I wouldn't want to take a prescription pain medicine on a regular basis either. Feel better soon please! Kristen

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