Sunday, March 10, 2013

Kelly St. Patrick's Day 5k - Race Recap

Today, hubby and I hit Baltimore to run our first live race of the year - Kelly's St. Patrick's Day 5k. I love this race. Hubby not so much. There is one reason I love this race. This is a pretty good photo of why I love this race:

Before I get ahead of myself, I'm going to back things up. We got up this morning and had a small breakfast. The race starts at 1:15 p.m. and it's hard to know how much to eat before the race since there's time between getting up and running. I went with two slices of toast with peanut butter and cinnamon, plus a cup of coffee with soy milk. Before we left I meant to have some dried cherries, but I forgot. Oops!

We headed off to Baltimore about 11:20 a.m. and we hit no traffic. That was nice. Parked our car at Harbor Place and hit up the bathrooms. The best reason in parking at that garage are the bathrooms in the food court! Afterwards, we walked over to Charles Street. We got outside and kinda freaked a bit because there was such a wind...a cold wind. We worried it would be a bad mistake wearing short sleeves, but we did survive the walk to the start.

Once there we texted our friend Ada since we meet up with her and her dragon boat friends for this race. We actually found her two dragon boat friends before her! We all hung around together chatting and taking photos. One of the group could not run because of a knee injury so he was taking photos. Here's a group shot:

Shortly after the photo was taken, the horn sounded and we didn't do anything. There were 5,000 people signed up for the race and wow. Insane! We really didn't move for a while. At the end of the race, there was a 4:40 difference between gun time and chip time. Yea. Crazy.

We finally got passed the timing mat and got to run...sorta. It was still pretty conjested, so I took to doing what my hubby refers to as pulling a Brian Westbrook - dodging in and out around other runners as you try to find open space to run. We hung together almost the whole way down Charles St., but I could tell he was holding back. He asked if I was ok at one point and I told him to run his race. Don't worry about me. So, off he went and I was alone.

I kept going and lost sight of him eventually. There were 5,000 runners and he is much faster than me even when injured. Once we turned off Charles Street, there was the 1 mile marker and they were yelling out times: 16:05. I knew I ran faster than that, but I had no idea what I was doing because I had no Garmin with me. I didn't bother since I know it doesn't pick up GPS well. As I turned onto Key Highway I just saw the first runner coming back towards Inner Harbor. He finished with a time of 15:13. Wow.

Up Key Highway we went and the up hill got me. I took my first 30 second walk. I usually stop every half mile, but without my Garmin I didn't know when that was. Oops! Maybe I should have taken it. I started up again, then took another quick walk break near Federal Hill. I just was dying on the continual uphill. After that I was good until the water stop. I ran well along Key Highway, better than I thought I would. I was pleasantly surprised when the turn around came up. Usually I am dying and wondering when it's going to show.

Made the turn and waited for the water. I needed it. My throat was so dry and I was fighting a side stitch. I knew I should have hydrated more, but there wasn't much I could do about it on the course. I grabbed a full cup of water and tried to drink and walk. Fail. Pulled myself off the course and drank my water. LOL! Then, back at it!

Kept going and it wasn't too long til I hit the 2 mile mark. They had people calling out times and when I hit the sign they called out 29:05. So...mile 1: 16:05; mile 2: 29:05. Interesting. I took a 30 second break, then kept going past Federal Hill and back towards Inner Harbor. I passed a few people, had a few people pass me. It was all good. I felt good. I was breathing a bit heavy, but not scary heavy. I took a quick 20 second break as I came up to Pratt Street, because I wanted to run to the finish from there.

I got past the first warehouse at Inner Harbor and turned onto Pratt Street. There was a nice guy cheering us all on, which was really sweet. He was all by himself and just stood there yelling and chanting for us all. I turned onto Pratt and felt good, not tired at all honestly. Which is weird. I saw this guy as I was running and he made me laugh:

How could you NOT laugh seeing him on the side of the street? I kept going. At this point I usually pull up and just coast. Today, I didn't want to do that. I didn't think I had much for a sprint though. The temps were in the 60s, which is about 25 degrees hotter than I've been running in. Spring is coming to the Mid-Atlantic and today was one of those early Spring days. I did say to myself, "be consistent. Don't worry about sprinting, just be consistent." So I did. I kept going. I passed a bunch of people. I was proud of myself. I turned the corner to the finish line and kept up my pace.

I crossed the line and saw 42:45 on the clock. Damn! I knew that wasn't right, but I had no idea what to subtract. After crossing the line, I heard hubby yell my name. I waved and kept going (I had to, they were funneling us through to get our timing chips off) and then he handed me a bottle of water. Bless him! I felt like I was going to throw up. The water helped. I downed that bottle of water faster than any I've ever had. LOL! My time? 38:05. Yes, my splits, while obviously the first two are gun time and the last chip, still kind funny:

Mile 1: 16:05
Mile 2: 29:05
Finish: 38:05

We waited for everyone to finish. We all had a good time and then headed over to the James Joyce for post-run food. :) It's getting to be a tradition. Post-race photo of hubby and I!


1. Start a bit further up next year. With the increase in participants it was insane at the start. Lots of people who started too far up and walked, slowing the rest of us down.

2. I need to lose weight. I knew I needed to, but I looked awful today. I don't care what you all think, I look bad. I looked better last year and I'm mad I let myself get this way.

3. Not be upset that I ran this race about 1:15 faster last year. I honestly thought I ran it about the same this year to last and when I saw my time this afternoon, I was really sad. I have to remember that this is the first time I felt really good running this the whole time. I ran strong the whole race and enjoyed it. The race just seemed to fly by (even if I didn't!).

4. Shamrock isn't going to go as well as I was hoping. I have a week to adjust my expectations. I'm not upset over this. I just have to prepare for it. I can take my mistakes from training for Shamrock and improve for Zooma Annapolis.

Did you race this weekend? How did you do? Do you have a race coming up?

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