Mastodon Challenge 5K Race Report and My Birthday

I love to run races on my birthday so this was perfect. Although a less hilly one would have made me just as happy.

I knew it would be hilly so I was  prepared to do a lot of walking.

miles 2-8 are uphill!!

But then I wimped out for the 2nd weekend in a row and decided to play on the cautious side and do the 5k. (Next year, if I am healthy, I may try the 15k.)

mc 5k

As you can see, this one isn’t flat either.

It was another warm day…in the 70s but at least there was a breeze.

I got to Cohoes early and found a spot in one of the parking lots. Then I walked to the park where the race began and realized that I could have parked closer.


I had time so I walked across the street to look at the Cohoes Falls.


It was so beautiful. I sat for awhile and relaxed.


And then walked around a little exploring the area.


Finally I headed back to the park.  I wound up chatting with Carolyn, a runner who is in my age group.  She is fast and usually my competition. She can finish a 5k in 25:XX so I am not really much of a threat to her.  I thought that she was running the 15K but she has a sore knee & I have have a sore foot so we had both switched to the 5k and we spend time discussing our running injuries.

Then the 15k started and we walked farther to the start of the 5k.


We both planned to run conservatively and off we ran.

The first mile was mostly downhill but then the hills came. First not too bad but then steeper and steeper.  I am not proud to admit that I walked up ALL the hills.

Eventually it flattened out and we ran though the bike trail.  The course was actually very nice (if you could ignore the hills.)

Finally near the last mile, we started to go downhill slightly.

I was ahead of Carolyn for most of the race but then she passed me.  I was tiring and I couldn’t catch up to her.

Then someone mentioned to look out for the uneven pavement and guess what? I caught my foot on something and went down HARD.

I just laid there hoping that I wasn’t badly hurt.

Many folks stopped to help.  My major worry was that I lost my Garmin.  It flew off and I couldn’t find it.  Then I saw it on the side of the road. The strap had come off.

It felt like I had stopped for many minutes (but it was probably only 1 minute.)

I got up, held my Garmin in hand and tried to finish the race.

Both of my knees were cut up. In fact the blood had dripped all the way down to my sock.  I also cut both of my palms and they were bleeding.



I saw a photographer or two.  I can’t imagine what I looked like. I tried to run fast but I was kind of shook up and stopped to walk a few times but at least I sprinted at the end.


check out those faces LOL – the guy in front of me remembered meeting me at a 5k in St Augstine, Fla a few years ago

Yes, I did finish the race and my time wasn’t nearly as bad as I feared.

Mastodon Challenge 5K

29:14 – It was faster than Thursday and I walked up the hills and fell!!

I sat down and got some ice for my knees.  The EMTs then bandaged me up.

For the first time after a race, I wasn’t hungry even though they had bagels, donuts, yogurt, fruit.


When I looked at the results, I realized that I came in 2nd in my age group.  Unfortunately, they only gave out awards for first.

mc 5k ag

Check out what would happened if I ran the 15k (and survived):


The good news.  My feet felt fine!  So I think I can get a 5k out of them  Who knows if I can run more?  (We’ll see on May 24??)


Mile 1- 8:47
Mile 2 – 10:32 (hills & fall)
Mile 3 – 9:05
.14 – 7:47

Garmin time – 28:12
Official time – 29:14

I rushed home to shower & put ice & antiseptic on my wounds.

I spent the rest of the day with my mentee, Amanda and her 2 sons at the Tulip Fest. We walked (I limped) around the park for hours. They had fun & I enjoyed spending my birthday with them.


I decided to postpone my dinner out with my hubby. I was pooped.

And I have another 5k tomorrow morning..Oy!

Happy Running! 

11 thoughts on “Mastodon Challenge 5K Race Report and My Birthday

  1. Geez, a fall on your birthday? We need to do some voodoo on that black cloud ha ging around you! You had an excellent time & good for you for finishing up the race. I’ll bet the walking afterwards actually help you from stiffening up too much.

    I just went out to lunch with a friend Friday – for my birthday – which is in February. We just couldn’t get our schedules to mesh up before this. And her birthday is at the end of the month!

    Good luck today. Happy Mother’s Day!


  2. Yikes. I’m glad you were not seriously hurt! It’s definitely not the best birthday present, but one you will probably never forget. You are a tough cookie to finish that race strong!


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  4. So sorry that you fell during the race. We saw someone fall during the Tinkerbell Half marathon and luckily there were people there to help immediately. I would be bummed to finish second and not get an award. Oh well, next year you need to run that 15k!


  5. That really stinks to fall, I have done it on my trail. I can’t believe you hit hard enough to take out your Garmin and you were able to get and run a fast mile. Way to hang in there! who cares if you walked the hills, you still had a great time 🙂 In heat, I will walk uphill more often just to keep from having a heart attack…
    The falls look beautiful.
    It does stink you weren’t up for the 15K you could have won it easily.


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