Second race in two weeks. This was the Rockwall CASA 5K, a charity org that advocates for kids caught in the court system.
Weather was cold, bright, and breezy, but I was stoked. In last week’s race, I noticed a guy who had beaten me by about a minute, and this morning I saw him again. So I resolved to stick on his back and hopefully make a PR. Around mile 2 I was seriously reconsidering, but I pulled out a couple of my favorite mantras and was able to stick with it, although I was grasping most of the way (groaning and gasping). Just before the 3-mile mark, I found enough in the tank to pass him by, and I thought I might be able to do my typical home-stretch sprint, but I wasn’t counting on the uphill climb and the headwind.
With the finish line in sight, he caught up to me, and my ego kicked in. I dug down deep and pushed hard, crossing the line a couple of seconds ahead of him, less than 25 and a half minutes, beating my PR by half a minute.
Afterwards I introduced myself to “Greg” and told him that if it wasn’t for his inspiring pace I wouldn’t have finished as well as I did. We chatted a bit about our mutual leap-frogging.
At the awards portion, I was surprised and thrilled to learn I had made second place in my age group, a first for me. Now I have a nifty silver medal for my efforts. Yay for me, although my enthusiasm deflated just a bit when I found out that Greg, the guy I could barely keep up with and who looked like he was ready for another race, is 12 years older than me. Oy, I hope I’m as fast as he is when I’m in my mid-50s.