Reading Time: 3 minsStarting off the year with a bang!! So, the 8K distance is an ever growing thing and this is only the 2nd time I have ever ran an official race for this distance. The last and first time was back in 2011 at the Gasparilla “5+3K” race, yes that was the official name for it. In fact, I guess the distance was so new then that Gasparilla didn’t even call it a straight up 8K. Either way, back in 2011 I ran that distance in 49:50. Needless to say, I destroyed that time with a new PR of 38:04. The crazy thing is I ran this race after a long nigh of drinking and getting at most 3 hours of sleep! WTF!? I heavily considered just sleeping in, but this was one of those moments I had to dig deep inside myself to do what was needed to be done.
It was an awesome overcast 70 degrees in the morning and it was looking to remain that way for a while, so it was near perfect running weather. The field of runners was small and the course was 100% flat. So, I was glad that I forced myself out of bed to make it out to this race.
Here was my view from where I parked in Gulfport:
As for the race, there really wasn’t much to it! I ran a solid 5 miles at 7:38 min/mi pace and everything went as best as it possibly could considering the lack of sleep and being dehydrated. Minus those factors the only thing that would have given me a faster time would have been if the course had less turns; which accounted for a total of 18 turns. Being more accustomed to the 5K distance, that’s exactly how I started off this race. I went out the gate much harder than I should have and found myself running at around a 6:15 min/mile, which would have been better suited for a 5K. I quickly adjusted myself about half a mile in and coasted the rest of the way averaging out a respectable 7:38 min/mile pace.
I’ll be running another 8K for Gasparilla this coming February. We’ll see if I can set a new PR!