Mayor’s Wellness 5K Race Recap: (21:35) + I Have a Serious Sleeping Disorder

Because I’m committed to racing bi-monthly in order to rack up more frequent speed workouts, I decided to race a 5K this morning, even though all of my regular road racing buddies were out of town. It’s hard to motivate myself to go to a 5K race alone. Dragging my tired bones out of bed, and into the car, and then actually figuring out how the heck to get where I’m supposed to go is much more difficult when I have zero accountability to anyone but myself. I didn’t want to bail on this race though, since there was a $250 cash prize on the line. I also selected this particular event because the proceeds go towards the local veterans’ foundation. And (I’m not going to lie) there have been historically good post-race refreshments at this 5K (I’d run it twice before).

I have a serious sleeping disorder. I’m started to get really depressed over my inability to fall asleep before 4AM no matter what I do. Last night I didn’t even try to go to bed until 1:30 because I knew it was pointless. Eating ice cream and Facetiming with Mom about Bruce Jenner well past midnight the night before an 8AM 5K is not conducive to A+ racing.


I tried everything to fall asleep: reading, meditating, hopelessly Googling sleeping disorder clinics (I think they only treat apnea and narcolepsy so I’m shit out of luck), listening to music, endlessly rearranging my pillows, experimenting with different pajamas… nothing worked. I was up until four-thirty AM.

My alarm went off at 6:30 and I actually felt pretty decent (though it took me a few solid minutes to remember why I was supposed to be waking up). I brewed some strong coffee and covered up the bags under my eyes before heading out the door. It was 38 degrees this morning (Come back, Spring!) so I decided to race in a pair of GAP split shorts and a Uniqlo Heattech long sleeve t-shirt. I’ve been listening to a lot of Simon & Garfunkel lately so I karaoked to Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme on the drive over to the race course.

I didn’t get much of a chance to warm up before the race since there was a bit of an issue finding parking. When I lined up at the start I figured I had a really good shot at winning. The siren went off and one girl sprinted out ahead of me. She was really young (12) and wearing a pair of Nike Frees so I knew it was only a matter of time before she’d start to lose steam. Sure enough, I passed her before the first mile mark. And then, a few seconds after I hit my first split (6:38), another woman passed me. At this point I was running with the chase pack of guys and we were all breathing pretty hard. But this girl was literally not making a sound. So I knew almost immediately that I wasn’t going to win the cash prize. My dreams of a $250 Target shopping spree came crashing down around me.

I was sitting comfortably in second for the rest of the race, so I decided it wasn’t worth killing myself to run a record shattering time a week out from Broad Street. I switched my Garmin’s display from pace to distance and just started counting down the fractions of a mile until the home stretch. My second and third mile splits ended up being 7:03 and 6:59 respectively. I can tell I didn’t give my usual 100% during this race because I didn’t puke at the finish line.

Thoughts During the Mayor’s Wellness 5K:

“How do I get faster? I WILL DO ANYTHING!”

“I was going to buy sunglasses, and bathing suits, and summer scented candles, and so many novelty snacks with this prize money and now it is slipping through my fingertips. Damn!”

“Maybe I should stop racing in heavy trainers. Maybe if I wore flats I could be a speed demon, too.”

“This is the third race I have run without listening to Spotify. I am so hardcore.”

“I’m glad I didn’t wear my spankies. The only thing worse than being second is being second in a pair of spankies.”

“Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme la la la la la la la la la”

“April, come she will, when streams are ripe and swelled with rain and it is still freezing cold.

When I saw the clock at the finish line I wasn’t thrilled with my time (21:35) at all. But I hardly feel as trashed as I usually do after a 5K.

Screen Shot 2015-04-26 at 11.24.04 PM
Thumbs up!

I finished 8th overall and second woman overall, plus 1st in the female 20-29 age category, so I snagged a super shiny gold medal and, like, 8,000 granola bars, plus nanners, nuts, and highly processed muffin snack packs. Even though this race didn’t go as well as I would have liked, I’m still really grateful for the opportunity to get in a good speed workout before my favorite race ever next weekend. I’m also glad I didn’t unconsciously hit snooze and accidentally sleep through it.

I am despicable.

Afterwards, I went to visit my mother and what do you know? She had parsley, sage, [basil], and thyme waiting for me in her organic herb garden! I’m really excited for the rest of her harvest to come in so I can start stuffing my face with free fruits and vegetables. Summer is my favorite season, for this reason alone.

The race timing company uploaded a video of the finish line, which is pretty cool!


Questions for the Internets:

Do you have any secret insomnia cures?

What is your favorite race of all time?

What would you buy with $250 at Target?



Add yours →

  1. That stinks about not winning… if we had a race with that kind of cash here though, I’d have no chance… heck I’d be lucky to take home age group honors. But it would be because so few races here have money prizes that people know about those that do and they all show up. Still 2nd female overall is awesome and you got a medal and some fun refreshments- and a good speed workout! I miss racing. I haven’t raced in 4 weeks and this feels weird!

    Hope you find some relief for the sleep issues. Have you tried melatonin (I’m sure you have)… or maybe yoga before bed? I have also taken hot baths with lavender epsom salts to try to sleep, not exercising in the afternoon (I *cannot* sleep after evening races), and waking up ridiculously early. Either way, it stinks to only get 2 hours of sleep before a race, or any night.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yay to speed workouts! Honestly, I like racing for that fact alone. I’m pretty unmotivated to run fast unless I’m running a race. I hear you about not wanting to go too many weeks without racing! But after your amazing 50 mile week, you’ll probably throw down some stellar times once you do race again! I think I may have to try the epsom salt bath – thank you for the tip!


      • I hope so! Honestly the last few runs have felt kinda hard, but I think I was tired after the long week. I do speedwork each week whether I race or not, so that helps, but I think a tempo run or a race is a different (and better) type of speedwork than intervals.

        Definitely try the epsom salt bath. I buy the lavender scented one and it helps my legs feel better plus the smell is good for relaxing before bed. Even if it doesn’t work for sleeping, it will help your legs feel really good!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I think even if you don’t see an immediate payoff you certainly will in the long term! Once your legs absorb all the extra mileage I wouldn’t be surprised if you set some new PRs. I hear a lot of people swear by epsom salts to reduce muscle fatigue so it certainly can’t hurt to try. 🙂


  2. Jessica @ VEGGIE RUNNING MOMMA April 25, 2015 — 8:59 pm

    hey great job on your race.!~ way to snag 2nd place.! That’s still a super good time. That 250 to target would have been awesooommee though.! I probably would have bought a new swimsuit (that I would never use), running socks, and food.! yess food. Food is too expensive, I cry every time I go to the super market. lol
    Secret insomnia cures.. warm milk always seems to help me go to sleep when I can’t sleep (which like never happens) but it also gives me crazy dreams. Sorry you can’t sleep though 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you! I basically spend all my money on food. It is so worth it. I should probably switch out my nightly decaf for warm milk then. (I have crazy dreams anyway!) It could be that the little bit of caffeine in decaf is what’s throwing me off. Thank you for the advice!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I cannot believe you stayed up that late and then raced. You are officially my hero. Sorry to hear it wasn’t the best but you will bounce back. I would say for speed consistency in racing is key. That is the same struggle I’m actually going with.

    Oh and the target gift certificate…we have about that much from wedding stuff…I have no idea LOL.


  4. 2nd is as amazing as Simon and Garfunkel’s-“The Boxer,” as I am sure you know!! Way to go-that is an awesome time that I would kill for!


  5. Love that video!! Your running form is gorgeous. I am so sorry about your sleep issues, I hope you find a solution soon!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Good job, girl! Only 2nd winners get parsley, sage and thyme! 😉


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