#9 of 13 in 2013 - Firecracker 5K Race Recap

Runners singing the National Anthem before the race!
I couldn't have asked for a better morning to run on the 4th of July at the Firecracker 5k. Well, it was all we could ask for for a July morning in Central Florida, that is.  The race was scheduled to start at 7 am to avoid the blazing heat of the sun.  Even so, the sun was already up but the humidity wasn't so bad yet (at least for me) at race time.  It surely got hotter and more humid as soon as the gun went off.

This was my first 5K for the year with my running buddy, my husband, Ralph.  The last time we raced together was at the Disney Princess Half Marathon back in February.  Princess was also his last race until today.  For me, I had been running at least one race a month since the beginning of the year but the last race I ran was the Run for the Gecko 5K on May 11.  Just like him, it felt like this was  my first race all over again.  With my excitement, I beat the alarm clock set at 5:30 by an hour!  I waited until Ralph woke up before getting out of bed.  For breakfast, I had one fried egg, two hot pandesal (Filipino bread), and a cup of piping hot green tea.  Ralph made a bowl of oatmeal with sliced banana.  We quickly took a shower, got dressed, spread on some sunscreen, grabbed our water bottles and iphones and we were out the door.

And we're off!  Photo courtesy Gloria Abad Suan
Since it was a 4th of July run, the race was held at the Liberty Bell Museum in Melbourne.  Parking was at the nearby Melbourne Auditorium which is a good half a mile from the venue.  It was a good distance to walk and warm up before the race.  After finding our friends and the mandatory photo ops, the race was on.  I hit start on the mapmyrun app  and Lady Gaga's Telephone on my iphone and I was off.  With over 1000 runners, it was a little slow at the start but we spread out in no time.  Ralph had gone ahead of me (he always does) because he wanted to beat his last race record.  I was in the middle of the pack and was maneuvering my way around the other runners.  I hit a good stride in the first mile according to the "lady" on the app.  According to "her", I was at a 10:24 min/mi pace at mile 1.  However, the official race split put it at 11:32 min/mi!  Mmmm, who's more accurate?  I guess in the end it doesn't really matter.  I still fell behind this pace after mile 1 and continued on to officially finish at 38:59 (12:44 min/mi).  Since I can never catch that elusive under 35 PR, I will just shoot for the attainable under 40 every time!  Hubby PR'd at 31:45, woohoo!!!  Not bad for a 50-year old novice runner!
Crossing the finish line!  I look like I'm swimming in my sweat!
Photo courtesy of runningzone.smugbug.com 

Ralph crossing the finishing line with a PR!!
Photo courtesy of runningzone.smugbug.com
It was a great run all around.  We got American flags, necklaces, and an array of fresh fruits after the race.  And as always, a nice cup of fruit smoothie that hits just the right spot especially on a hot race day as today.  

I can't wait to run the 10th of 13 races in 2013 race next month at the I Run for Pizza Football Kickoff 5K!  I hope to see you there.

So happy to wave the American flag marking another great race together.
With our friends, Lorna and Tony Mazza. 
Me at mid-race. Photo courtesy of runningzone.smugbug.com
Ralph at mid race .. Photo courtesy of runningzone.smugbug.com
Team Eau Gallie High School!  Photo courtesy of Natalie Marshall


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