I won my age group (50-54) for my first race of 2023, a 5K in my city.
I'm currently in my 3rd half marathon training cycle, but I like to do some fitness tests at times. My first race of 2023 was the Shamrocks and Shenanigans 5k in my city's downtown (Ann Arbor, Michigan) on March 12, 2023. It was snowy, slushy, windy, and cold, so I wore my trail shoes, a very good decision.
I managed to get first place in my 50-54 female age group, also setting a brand new personal best in the 5K distance for myself, shaving off 45 seconds from my prior personal best in a 5K in July 2022! I'm super excited, elated, and in shock, but in a good way! I have had a pink sticky note with my 2023 goal time for a 5K since last fall, on my closet door, so I can pass it multiple times daily, programming my subconscious mind for success. Looks like I will need a new goal time for 2023 for the 5K distance, since I beat the one on my pink sticky note by 3 seconds. Oh, okay!
Speaking of 3 seconds, my hubby Jan pointed out that my kick at the finish helped me secure first place in my age group by 3 seconds. I'm so glad I pushed that finish hill.
I'm 51 as of this writing and so hopeful that I continue to improve. I returned to running in April 2020 to help my mental health in the early days of the pandemic, returning to racing in 2021. I have a good fitness base from other years as an endurace athlete, so I'm sure that helps me to progress.
I find that I can use my stressors as a fuel for my training and racing. This past month has been full of epic stressors! My elderly mother-in-law entered hospice. My pet hamster boy has been slowing down and we feel like maybe it's his last days with us sadly. Prior to all of this, we had two severe, back to back winter storms that took out our power, one of which was 6 days long, necessitating our need to stay with two different friends, so we could keep our pet hamster warm, to avoid possible torpor. We also lost a big tree in our backyard, as well as parts of other big trees on our property, since we live right up to the Greenbelt, last house on the dead end by the forest. I'm so grateful for the ability to run, train, and race, since it's a stress reducer for me!