Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Baltimore Women's Classic 5k Race Recap

Sunday, I ran the Baltimore Women's Classic 5k for the 5th time (2009, 2010, 2011, 2012). It was the very first 5k race I ever ran. I chose it honestly because it was an all-women's race. I didn't want to deal with the whole man macho thing for my first race. I knew I wouldn't be fast. The goal was to cross the finish line. Nothing more, nothing less. Which I did! I crossed at 45:25. I rocked it!

Each year, as long as I'm able I will run this race. 2013 is my 5th year running it and it was a good year! But, that's a bit ahead of the story. Let's take a step back and start from the beginning.

We stayed in Baltimore the night before because I am fairly lazy. Actually, we did it as a celebration of my first 5k in 2009 and we now look forward to it each year. So, why not? But, it is about an hour and 15 minutes to Baltimore from our house, so it would be a really early morning if we drove down day of.

We walked over to the Inner Harbor about 7:15 a.m. When we got to Rash Field, it was about 7:30 a.m. and the pre-race warm-up was going on. I did some stretching on my own and got my pre-race pic taken.

Shortly after, they called us to head to the start. The start is next to Rash Field on Key Highway. We walked over together and I got in line at the 13+ area, while hubby hit Federal Hill to get some pics. I felt I would run the race faster than the 13+ time, but I don't want to mess anyone else's race up and not having run since June 1st I wasn't sure how fast or slow I would be. So, 13+ minute mile pace it was!

I have no idea when we started because I was messing with my stupid Nano...again! This happened at Zooma too. Frustrating. Finally got it to play when I switched to radio, then back to playlist. Whatever. It started working before the start line. This way I could concentrate on starting Garmin when my feet crossed the mat. Priorities.

As I ran along Key Highway, past Federal Hill, I saw hubby on the wall waiting. It's always nice to have your own personal photographer!

Off we went, along Key Highway, then into the neighborhoods. Now, I quickly realized that the 13+ minute mile pace was a bad decision. Not that I'm a speed demon or anything, but I was passing people left and right. I couldn't believe how much quicker than usual I was running. Before we made the turn into the neighborhoods, I ran on the sidewalks to get away from all the slower runners and walkers. I do not say this meanly. I am a slow runner, but it seems as if most runners really had no idea where they should have been.

I made the turn and hit the only real hill in the race. I ran some of it, then realized it was too steep. Whatever. I power walked it, passing many a runner on the hill. Apparently, I rock at power walking! At the top of the hill, I started running again and off I went. Other than being hot, it wasn't a bad run. A couple times my quads were hurting, but I thought to my TRX trainer and powered through.

I will say that I think the course was either short or mismarked. I had my Garmin going and while not perfect, I hit the 1 mile marker on the course at .78. Which seemed really short. Then I hit the 2 mile marker about .88. Ok, so we're picking up. Right about when Garmin said I hit 2 miles, another runner mentioned that her mileage wasn't meshing with the course markers. So, it wasn't just me. Again, it could be that the markers were not in the right spot, but it seemed weird.

I seemed to be running well. I didn't think my split times were that great, but I felt good (if hot). I stopped at both water stops for water. Totally needed it! I got an email from the race saying the start temps were 73 degrees. Seemed hotter than that... My goal had been to race PR it, I knew I didn't necessarily have a 5k PR in me.

As I came back to Key Highway, I started looking for the hubby. He said he would wait until I passed before heading to the finish. He was basically where he was earlier and again, I saw him first. Then again, I was looking for one male in an orange shirt, while he was looking for me out of tons of runners. I saw him and got another race pic!

From here, we head back up Key Highway to a condo development where we run along the water to the finish line. It really is a beautiful view of Inner Harbor. I remember last year I stopped along this area. I was tired and hot then. Well, I was hot this year, but I felt ok in terms of running, so I kept it up. I even passed some people on the way to the finish. I ran along the water enjoying the view, then turned off towards the finish line.

Hubby managed to make it and I saw him just as I came up to the last stretch. He put the camera in the air as he was a row behind people and took pics hoping to get something. This one turned out, even if you can't tell what I'm doing at all.

He got some better shots of my butt, though I'm not sure they are what I want taken. LOL!

I crossed the line, turned off Garmin, and breathed a sigh of relief. I say this because I was sweating like crazy and I knew two things were waiting for me - a bottle of cold water and a cold, wet towel. :-) How's that for post-race?? I got my water, yea! Then I got my towel, yea! Next was my rose, yea! Finally I got my gorgeous medal! Woot! It rocks. No doubt!

I found hubby quickly and I was about to die. I was still breathing heavy and needed that water! He asked how I did and Garmin said 38:18. Hmmm...did I race PR??? I think I did, but I totally forgot to check last year's time! Oh the humanity!

We headed off to the food and I grabbed an orange and a piece of watermelon. Honestly, the orange was better than the watermelon.

The juice was ah-mazing!  I loved it! Hubby thought this look was flattering. I don't know. My hair looks kinda flat...

I'm going to back up a tiny little bit. I thought this past week that the race has grown so much they should have one of those big plastic sheets with BWC on it for people to get their pic taken with. Cue the ironic music, there was one this year! So, we got in line so I could get my pic taken. Sure, it's a 5k but it's an awesome 5k.

While waiting I got a text from a Twitter friend about meeting up. Sadly, I missed it originally and by the time I checked my phone she was already at her car. :-( I'm sorry I missed you Meghan! We will meet up! I did touch base with another runner friend Amy who was at the race. We checked in to see how each other did and then parted ways as she was headed home.

Hubby and I left shortly thereafter because it was hot and I was smelly. But, before we did I got my pic with my swag at the Inner Harbor.

After this, we headed back to the hotel for a shower. Yea! We then hit B&O Brassiere for brunch. They have an all-you-can-drink Mimosa special for Sunday brunch.

I had a delicious breakfast of cheesy eggs, hash browns, toast, and really crispy bacon! I wore my medal the whole time. LOL! No one asked me about it though. I was surprised. Unless people of Baltimore are just used to people walking around wearing medals. Could be...

I have now embarked upon year 5 of my running career! And how will I celebrate? By taking off July and August. LOL! That's ok. I know the fall and winter will be good. Here's to another successful BWC!

Oh and that race PR? Yea, I got 47 seconds! Woot!


  1. I ran this race for the first time and loved it AND PRed too. My Garmin said it was less than 3.1 so IDK though. Glad you had a nice race! B&O is so yummy, I live right by there!

    1. It's a great race in my opinion. Your first is always special, right? ;-) Well...we go to Baltimore a lot. We'll have to get together sometime. :) Congrats on YOUR PR!!

  2. Also, I am glad you used the orange picture. :-)

  3. Congrats on your 5k PR! Almost 1 minute, that's HUGE!!!

  4. Race PR, but thanks! My overall 5k PR is 36:40, which is actually arbitrary because the race I got it at did not have a start mat and I used my own Garmin for it. Eh. One day I will be under 35 minutes. One day...