race report: florida striders memorial day 5k {5.30.16}

Sorry to have kept you waiting for this race report: after so long without writing them, it’s been a little tough to get back into the swing of it. Without further ado, here’s the tale of my fourth Florida Striders Memorial Day 5K.


This race holds a special place in my heart. After all, it’s the first race I ever ran, and I’ve made it a point to come back each year. It’s been a great way for me to check my progress through the years.

I knew this year wasn’t going to be a PR, just because I am coming back from my injury. I also knew that it probably wasn’t even going to be a great race. I just wanted to get myself out there and back in the game. I have fallen out of the habit of racing, and the more I throw myself on the mercy of the course, the easier (and more familiar) it should get.

At least, that’s the way I plan on looking at it.

The original plan was for Mr PugRunner and little man to accompany me. However, little man was adjusting to summer vacation, and had spent the last few days in the pool and staying up incredibly late at night. As he should be doing. Mr PugRunner and I decided not to wake him up on this Monday. If he got up on his own, then Mr PugRunner would bring him to the race, 25 minutes away. If not, well, there would always be next year.

I hadn’t made any other particular plans to meet up with anyone, but some of my girlfriends were there, and I was thrilled to see them.

We all had our own goals for the morning, and that was just fine by me. I had plans to be alone in my head for this one.

While this race is never huge, the Striders boasted record attendance. It was wonderful to see.

It was beautiful seen so many people out in support of those who paid the ultimate sacrifice in service to our country.

After the National Anthem and a moment of silence, we were off. The 8:00 start time was rough. Even with all the tree shade in the surrounding neighborhoods, the heat and humidity was crushing. I was really only semi-prepared for it – I think my hydration was as good as I could get it, but I was sweating hard before I even hit the first mile mark.

Such is running in Florida.

I played a lot with my intervals. Since I didn’t have any lofty goals, I tried a combination of running for as long as I could and then strictly sticking to my :60/:15 run/walk time. It was nice to be able to catch a breather in the humidity with the walk breaks, but I was doing ok with the longer running, too.

Mentally, I just ticked off the distance. One foot in front of the other. I just wanted to be consistent and feel ok.

Really, it was all fine.

I was flat when I crossed the finish. One thing I have felt lacking in my runs in the ability to conserve enough energy for that final kick. As I am getting more consistent in my training, I plan to add in more strides to get it back. The lack of that sprint makes the ends of races much more anticlimactic for me, and I would really prefer a little more of that adrenaline rush.

I met back up with the girls for victory photos.

The bling this year was gorgeous: much larger and brighter than the three past races.

I was darn proud to have earned it.

Unfortunately, when I got back to my car, I was treated to the surprise of a dead battery. Womp womp. I despise car issues and was feeling pretty frustrated: Mr PugRunner was almost a half an hour away (they never made it out), and while my parents lived close to the race site, I hated to bother them. Papa Bear headed my way, but one of my coworkers came to the rescue by asking his friend to give me a jump. I was so relieved that I wasn’t going to have to get a tow, and was able to get the car home safely (spoiler alert: we got a new battery and all is well).

Once again, runners save the day.

I think it’s safe to say I’m finding my groove again. It’s going to be a process, and I’m not always incredibly patient, but I am doing my best to avoid any more injuries and still continue with the sport I love.

What’s something you love about the running community?

When you have a not-so-great race, are you able to find the positives in it, or do you write the whole thing off as a negative?


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26 Responses to race report: florida striders memorial day 5k {5.30.16}

  1. Darlene says:

    I race a lot so I have a lot of bad ones. It’s easy then. Just run another and you’ll forget.
    Darlene recently posted…Monday Running UpdateMy Profile

  2. You know what I like best about this post? Your attitude! So positive! You’re doing great! Congrats on another 5K in the books!
    Stacie Seidman recently posted…Truthful Tuesday!My Profile

  3. So cool that you run this race every year. Way to do it even though it was a tough one!

    • runswithpugs says:

      It’s nice that it’s local so I can easily get back to it. However, it holds a special place in my running heart, and I hope I can continue it going forward.

  4. I think it’s really fun to have a race you always come back to. I do like to switch it up, but there’s something about knowing what’s coming that I also really enjoy.

    That’s a really neat medal – and I love your Brooks shoes!
    Ange // Cowgirl Runs recently posted…Seven Weeks to SeaWheezeMy Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      I love new experiences, but the familiar just feels like home. I wasn’t initially sold on the Adrenalines, but the 16 Kaleidoscopes are becoming one of the favorites in my rotation.

  5. Debbie says:

    I love that picture with your friends. So patriotic! These days I really don’t worry too much about my race time. All my PR days are behind me, so unless I train really hard for a race (which I haven’t done for a couple years), I’m just out there for the fun.
    Debbie recently posted…5 Tips to Run Faster at Any Race Distance – Coaches’ CornerMy Profile

    • runswithpugs says:

      We definitely do like to show our patriotism.

      Sometimes I think I am out of the PR game, but then I feel like I might have a little more left in me, so I guess I will see. As long as I am having fun, I guess it doesn’t matter, but I do have that little competitive urge inside that makes me want to do better. Hoping that a few more races under my belt this summer will help settle me.

  6. Summer running is always challenging isn’t it? I also have a hard time at the finish. I like smaller races sometimes
    Deborah @ Confessions of a mother runner recently posted…People & Places That Made Me Smile This WeekMy Profile

  7. I always like to look for a positive! I run the same summer series every summer and it is a ton of fun to see the progress year after year!
    Mary Beth Jackson recently posted…My Active life with Spandits!My Profile

  8. I love that you go back and do this since it was the first race you ever did. I’d love to go back and run the race where me and my hubby got married – maybe for our 10 year anniversary or something! 🙂

  9. I’m glad to see you are getting back into running again. I’m kind of where you’re at. Without anything to train for and my relentless PF, I’m just not feeling it these days! Great job on the race.
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…Music to Get Lost byMy Profile

  10. Jessica says:

    You rocked it! And I love your attitude about everything, including the dead car battery.

  11. So glad that you are back up and running. Sorry about the dead battery though, what a stinky way to end a race.
    Abby @BackatSquareZero recently posted…Women’s Core SQ 5.5 ShortMy Profile

  12. I know all to well about time getting away from us to recap a race! I’ve still got to recap Nashville!
    What a great race and yes you did earn it! I love the medal!
    Tricia @MissSippiPiddlin recently posted…Weekly Wrap 46 Barrel Racing FunMy Profile

  13. I love your attitude about the entire day. A positive attitude can always make any bad race, situation, or day seem better. You definitely earned that medal!
    Kathryn @ Dancing to Running recently posted…2016 ZOOMA Annapolis Half Marathon RecapMy Profile

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