I go through running shoes at a decent clip, so I'm often wearing old pairs when I'm out and about. Last Saturday, however, I slipped on loose gravel while we were tailgating at Turner Field and I heard my left ankle make two cracking noises.
What was worse was it made me nauseous immediately afterward. This wasn't good, especially with the Braves Country Father's Day 4-Miler just a week away.
Less than 3 weeks from the Peachtree Road Race, this fun run is as good of a tune up for the 10K race as any. Plus it would be my first running of it as a father.
But just trying to run on the ankle was extremely awkward, at least for the first two days. I couldn't really push off of it and it felt like a flat tire when I ran on it. I logged a mile only the next two days.
By Tuesday, I was able to get three miles off of it and the next day, when I ran to Turner Field to get a bobblehead, it turned out to be my longest run since the Publix Georgia Half Marathon in March.
When I went to bed last night, it felt a little funny. But this morning, it felt OK and I wore my new running shoes to have as much padding and support as possible. After I received my race number at Turner Field, I ran around the perimeter of the old Atlanta Fulton County Stadium (now a parking lot), and while I was slow, it felt OK.
When the race started, it was a slow start like last year, a lot of dodging people. But it felt good. I didn't even feel the ankle at all. What I did feel was my calf muscles really getting a good workout on the first incline.
I made a good pace the first two miles, but was a little slower on the third mile. I guess I'm not used to running faster, as we've tended to take it easy running with baby K. in a stroller the last three 5Ks we've done this year.
The approach on Georgia Avenue to Hank Aaron Drive is super hilly. I was really just trying to hold on until this turn, where I told myself I would start running faster for the last quarter mile to the finish.
Last year I waited until I was in Turner Field to kick, and that ended up being a very short experience. So this year I wanted to start running faster at the Hank Aaron turn.
I think it worked. I focused on finishing strong and it really was a mad dash to the finish line.
I was about a minute and 40 seconds slower than last year but given my recent ankle issue, I was happy to run under 8-minute miles.
Time: 7:30 a.m.
Temp: 70-72 degrees
Gear: Tech T, short (Kessler 10K), shorts, Nike Air Pegasus+ 28/A.