This was my fourth year running the CCAP 5K. This is one of my favorite local 5K's because it benefits the Children's Center Adult Program, a day program for adults with disabilities. Several of the clients and their families participate in this event. I will run it every year that I am able.
The past two times that I have run this course I managed to PR and finish sub 25 minutes. I knew that the possibility of a PR was unlikely. I was just starting to get back in a routine of running after months of inconsistency. Deep down I hoped to better my time from the Cruising the Creekwalk 5K in January. I used 2:00 run/30 sec walk intervals in all of my practice runs. I had to use the run/walk method only 1.5 miles into the Cruising the Creekwalk 5K. The walk breaks have certainly helped break up longer training runs, but I was eager to see if I could go without them in this race.
The weather is usually chilly for this race. This year it was overcast and 60 degrees. The course runs through the historic Capitol Heights district. It is mostly flat with a few gently rolling hills. I clocked my first mile in 8:05. The thirty second walk breaks were still set on my watch for every two minutes, but I kept going without stopping.
I was starting to tire out when I reached the water stop around 1.5 miles. I grabbed a cup of water and thanked the volunteers. I walked while I sipped my water, but I was determined to run as much as I could for the remainder of the race. A woman who looked to be in my age group passed me at the water stop. I looked back and saw two other women around my age gaining on me. I clocked my second mile in 8:36.
My legs were feeling sluggish when I passed the mile 2 marker. I wanted so badly to resort to run/walk intervals for the last mile. The two women behind me were still gaining on me. I knew if I walked they would surely pass me. I also knew that I probably wouldn't improve my time from January if I walked, which I felt capable of doing. I didn't want to feel disappointed when I crossed the finish. I wanted to give it my all and leave nothing behind. I was shocked that I clocked my third mile in 8:34. I felt like it was much slower than the first two miles. I crossed the finish line in 26:17.
They gave finisher medals to everyone which I thought was really nice. They had pizza, bananas, oranges, and crackers after the race. They also gave away some really great door prizes from their sponsors. Someone gave me an Alabama Crimson Tide lawn sign because she wasn't a football fan.
It didn't take long to figure the results. They only awarded the top male and female in each age group. There were a few women ahead of me including the one who passed me at the water stop. I didn't know if they were in my age group. I was pleasantly surprised to hear my name announced as the winner of the 31-35 age group.