I've noticed a trend in my racing. The races that I worry about my time the least are the ones where I tend to have the most fun. It was true in the Baltimore half marathon in the fall and it was definitely true in the 10 Miler this weekend.
Me and my mom before the start of the race.
Going into the race I knew I didn't have a solid enough training base to expect anything great. My main goal was truly just to finish and not have to walk too much and have fun with friends.
Girls before the race
It was hot and humid in the morning before the race started and I was nervous that I wouldn't be ready to run 10 miles in those conditions.
After my normal pre-race routine, we lined up in our corrals. My mom was seeded toward the back, so we wished each other luck and I headed into corral 2 with my coworker Emily and her friend, Aila.
Me, Emily and Aila in the corral
We waited for a little bit and then we were off. The three of us split up pretty quickly and I focused on running my own race.
The course is an out and back and starts on a pretty nice 1.5 mile downhill run, which of course means the last 1.5 miles are a brutal uphill climb.
I was trying to hold a steady pace and not go out too fast on the early downhills. I knew I had a lot of running ahead of me.
The early parts of the course take you through Druid Hill park before you head out onto the city streets to Lake Montebello. After running all the way around the lake, you head back to the park.
I love out and back portions of a race because the slower runners get to see the lead people flying by. Not long after I passed the third mile marker, I saw the male leader. And a minute or two later I saw my wicked fast friend from college, Dan. I think he was maybe fifth or sixth at that point.
I was feeling really good for the first 4 miles of the race, even though there were some pretty big hills and the sun was really hot. Fatigue began to set in between mile 6 and 7, but I was still going strong.
I was actually really surprised that I hadn't hit the wall yet. After spending a month running no more than four miles one or twice a week, I was expecting this race to be completely miserable.
The last two miles were a lot of uphill, which at the end of a 10 mile race on a hot summer day was about enough to wipe me out. I walked a decent portion of some of the uphills at the end, but when I cruised through the finish line, I had a huge smile on my face and felt great.
Start and finish line.
Sure, my time was nothing to brag about. I finished in 1:41:59, a little bit slower than a 10 minute mile average, but for a race I was running just for fun with almost no training, I was pretty thrilled.
Volunteers handing out water at the finish
I'm mildly sore today and have an insane blister on my right pinky toe that's making it hard for me to walk like a normal person. It popped yesterday morning. It's gross but don't worry this time I didn't take a picture.
And just for the record, everyone else I ran with also had pretty great races. My coworker finished under 1:30, her friend finished right around 1:45 and my mom finished in just over 2 hours, after having not trained either.
Me and my mom after the race.
I would do this race again in a heart beat if it was at a different time of the year. I loved the course. The race was extremely well organized. I just can't take the summer heat. This race may have a place on my calendar next year, I'm just not sure yet.