It's a very slow process - two steps forward, one step back - but I'm inching in the right direction. - Rob Reiner

July 14, 2014

Rock the Crossroads 5K - Yep another 5k

I usually don't do very many 5Ks in a year, but I've managed to do three in the past month for some reason.  If you read my last post then you know my last 5K was kind of a disaster...but this one was better :)

A few months ago a friend of mine asked me to do the Rock the Crossroads 5K in downtown Kansas City.  I actually did this race last year and it was pretty fun so I said yes.  They have a live band in an actual concert type venue after the race.  It's usually a local band, but they are pretty good.  You also get pretty amazing swag for a 5K with a very nice t-shirt and medal.  The race is in the "Crossroads" District of Kansas City which is kind of an art District.  There is lots of fun graffiti everywhere.
Some of the graffiti in the Crossroads District
It all sounded good until a day or two beforehand when I really start thinking about the fact that I have a long run to do over the weekend and about how hot it is going to be.  The race is Saturday night so I had to decide if I wanted to do a long run Sat morning like normal and then do a 5K that night or if I wanted bike Saturday morning instead and then do the 5K and move my long run to Sunday.  Either way was not ideal, but I settled on Sunday and it worked out pretty good.  I had my best long run Sunday that I've had in ages!

So now for the heat.  This is an evening race so it's truly in the heat of the day.  It starts at 7:30 before the sun goes down.  And this Saturday we had "Out hottest day of the Summer so far" according to the local weatherman.  Oh goodie.  We've actually lucked out in Kansas City so far this Summer.  Normally we would have seen many days in the 90s and even 100s but it's been a pretty mild Summer so far with only a couple of days in the 90s.

I looked up the temperature before the race.  90 degrees....and feels like temperature of 95 with the scorching humidity.  The sun was still shining and there wasn't a cloud in the sky.  It was going to be  HOT for sure. On top of it all this course is pretty darn hilly.  Pretty much the entire 2nd mile is uphill....or at least it seems like that anyway.

I got to the race pretty early because I still needed to pick up my packet.  It didn't take long and then Jim (who was sitting this one out) and I tried to find a place to hang out while I waited on my friend.  Almost everyone was crowded in this tiny alley trying to get some shade.  We were there for a bit, but then found a spot on the steps around the building that was shaded by another building.

.Hiding in the shade before the race start
I finally met up with my friend and it was time to get started.  I wished her good luck and she said "we can run together"....we are NOT the same pace, not even close.  I said "you probably don't want to run with me I'm going to take it really slow".  She said, oh it will be fine.  I had decided before the race that after what happened the previous week I would run pretty slow.....somewhere around an 11 or 11:30 pace.  I was still experiencing some symptoms from my vertigo attack and while I hadn't had another one I wasn't sure what might happen in the heat if I pushed too hard so I figured I should probably take it easy.

So what do I do....kill it during mile one.  Of course.  The race starts and I just start running.  I am dying already and can tell I'm going way too fast.  I'm sweating and I'm hot already and I am absolutely parched within the first half mile.  My friend Christa asks "what's our pace" 9:45 I say - and she says "oh that's good, this feels ok, let's just keep that the rest of the time".....I know that's not going to happen - 9:50 pace is my 5K PR....

Anyway, she gets a bit ahead of me and looks back to see where I am and I wave her on.  I know I will keep slowing down and I do.  I settle in to a more comfortable pace and then the giant hill comes.  I start running up it but it is kicking my butt and I stopped to walk for a few seconds.  I was amazed at how many people were walking this portion.  The heat was really getting to everyone.  I think my second mile was around 11 something. 

We finally get through mile two and mile 3 isn't too bad.  Some small inclines but nothing like you have in mile 2.  But at this point the heat is baking me and everyone else.  I've never seen so many people walking.  I'm not speedy by any means but at this point I'm still averaging in the upper 10s and most people who run that pace are still runners....I rarely see people walking in other 5ks.  My third mile is a 10 something.  I haven't downloaded my Garmin data yet.  I finally see the finish line and pick up my pace again.

I crossed in 32:58, a 10:38 pace.  This wasn't my fastest or slowest 5K time.  But in the heat, I would take it for sure!  I ended up 20th in my Age Group out of 64 and 445 out of 914 overall, which honestly is pretty good for me.  Apparently the heat got a lot of people.

After the race I grabbed my medal and two bottles of water.  One to pour over me and one to drink :)
Post race with our medals...HOT!!!
I have done hotter races, but have been training in hotter temperatures prior too them.  So this one was tough.  I did do a couple of half marathons last year with temps that weren't much cooler. 

What's the hottest race you've ever done?? 


  1. Wow! I was there. It was horribly hot. Even so, I got a 4 minute PR. I wish I had known you were there. I would have looked for you.

  2. my A race in March here in Australia is always in the 90s with ridiculous humidity. The heat always drains the energy out of you - great time!

  3. I am 99.9% sure I would never do a race in that heat, I am a total heat wimp. The hottest race I ever did was a half in July that started at 8am, it was sweltering by the time I was done and I nearly heat stroked.

    Great job with the race

  4. Well done in tough circumstances. I don't do very well in the heat unless I am in very super tip top shape. I have never done a 5km race.Nearly all the 5km's here by us are classified as non-official fun runs and only 10km and up as official races.

  5. Just read your hubby's blog - I didn't know you had a blog too! Great race! And nice medals!

  6. I was in Kansas City that day and you're right - it was HOT! And humid too. We were at the Royals game while you were running and we were sweating through our clothes just sitting there! Nice job managing the heat!

  7. Same comment as Rachel, only she forgot to mention that we raced that morning when it was in the mid 80s. Luckily it was shaded. That is my hottest race, next to the 2010 Chicago Marathon.

    You did fabulously and I am happy you didn't have any vertigo issues this time!

  8. That's crazy hot. I know I would have pulled the pin on running at that temperature. But having said that, I have raced at that temperature before. It was in a relay and I couldn't let my team mates down so I sucked it up. If I'd been doing it just for myself there's no way I would have run.

  9. That's a pretty awesome medal for a 5K! And well done :) Glad the vertigo is getting better!

  10. I'm impressed that you'd even race in those temps. I am SUCH a wuss about hot weather! Congrats on a great run !

  11. Wow, that temp sounded awful. "feels like" 95? I'm amazed that you guys do so many races during the summer with the heat out there though. Sounds like you did really well relative to everyone out there. Hopefully your vertigo doesn't come back again.

    "Heat" in Northern California would likely be classified as "moderate temps" relative to where you are lol. But the main race that I can think of when I wilted under the sun was in high school cross country finals when I was dehydrated, and simply ran the worst race of my life (still to this day). It may have been 90 ish that day? Not sure, but I simply ran absolutely awful.