I woke up at 6 this morning to run the Sallie Mae 10k, starting behind the Lincoln Memorial. My friend and I had said to each other that we would try to run together until one of us felt the need to go faster. I was shocked to see that our first mile took 10.3 minutes to complete, and we had been running for 19+ minutes when we got to the second mile marker. Then my friend broke away to run faster, and I figured I would be running more 10 minutes miles. At the third mile marker I was at 28 minutes, and I thought to myself how that was an acceptable time for 3.5 miles, not 3. At mile 5, however, I was at 45 minutes, so somehow I had gotten back to a 9 minute mile pace along the way. And I finished with 56.40, so my average pace was 9.08 minutes/mile.
But the time doesn't matter to me as much as the fact that I ran the whole race wtihout stopping to walk, not even once, even though I had never run that distance before, and I usually took walk breaks during 5 mile runs. The track was beautiful; we ran around Hains Point and had water to left or right side of us for the whole race. The temperature was in the 60s, so I never felt overheated, which I had worried about, because I don't have a sense of what the boundary is for overheating, i.e., when I need to stop and take a breather.
And what's more, I didn't have my iPod.