Last Saturday was the Get in Gear 10k. There was also a half-marathon and a 5k on Saturday. The evening before was a 2k for kids!
I ran the 10k because that race was part of my running club‘s USATF racing circuit. As I mentioned in my weekly recap, my coach had me “taper” a bit for this race, so my legs were a bit more rested than they normally would be mid-marathon training. I think it worked! Read on to hear more….
Let me start with packet pickup. It was held on a very rainy Friday night at the Minnehaha Park pavilion from 12-8 pm.
I actually was stuck at work late on Friday, so Dustin went to packet pickup for us. We received dry-fit finisher’s shirts…and of course, the women’s cut was v-neck and doesn’t really fit well. Why is that always the case? I would have loved a soft cotton tee that I could wear around the house, as I know I won’t run in this shirt (too short, too loose, etc.)
The race started at 9 am. Dustin and I parked at the VA Medical Center and took one of the super easy shuttle buses to the start. Parking is a bit of a challenge, but the shuttles made it all a lot easier.
We were at the start line by 8 am with almost too much time to kill! Eventually the rest of our team showed up and we did a 2 mile warmup. (FYI, Dustin opted out of the race- he was experiencing some achilles pain and has his 50k race next Saturday, so he didn’t want to risk it. The men’s team had plenty of runners , so he took pictures instead and did a long run later that day with Matilda)
The Start Line:
There were volunteers handing out clear plastic gear check bags at the start. There was also a USATF tent where we could leave bags at the start.
The start line had a large screen streaming footage of the start and finish line. Very impressive for a smaller race! They also had a full band that played the National Anthem. There was no wave start or corrals, so the start area was a little chaotic. The half marathon and the 10k start together. I actually pushed my way towards the front only because the USATF racing rules go by gun time instead of chip time, so its important for us to be towards the front. I did feel a little silly up there with all the truly fast people! This race is incredibly competitive. The winning men’s time was 29:36 or 4:46 per mile! The winning women’s time was 36:11 or a 5:50 pace. Amazing!
There was one support stop with water and Gatorade for the 10k. Around mile 5, the 10k and half-marathon split off and I believe the half marathon had additional support stops along the way. Its actually rare that I get to turn off towards the finish for one of the shorter races, so I was quite pleased to be pushing towards the finish rather than continuing on for a half marathon!
The course has a few hills. There was an especially tough one on the St. Paul side of the river (one that is familiar to those who have run the Twin Cities Marathon!) Fortunately, my running club had an awesome group of spectators cheering right there at the top of the hill, so you had no choice but to push it up the hill!
The Finish Line:
There was water and some other goodies at the finish.
Overall, this race is well-organized. I can’t really speak for the half marathon or the 5k, but I thought that the 10k was well done and a lot of fun. I actually really like the 10k distance. It’s a challenging distance to race! I want to sign up for more 10k’s in the near future.
My coach wanted me to average around 7:15-7:20 min/miles. I didn’t quite achieve that goal, but I was really happy with a 2 minute PR!
Here are my splits:
Mile 1: 7:00. Whoah, way too fast!
Mile 2: 7:20
Mile 3: 7:24
Mile 4: 7:40- definitely the mile with the hills!
Mile 5: 7:29
Mile 6: 7:30
Final 0.2: 7:10
Final time: 46:13, 7:25 min/mile average
Afterwards, my coach told me he was still pleased. He would prefer for me to go out too fast in a shorter race than hold back (though obviously this method doesn’t work in a marathon!) He also seems to believe that I am faster than I think. He wants me to get more comfortable with the “uncomfortable” which means pushing the pace as hard as I can, as long as I can. If I slow down, that’s okay.
I think I did exactly that! I mean, I definitely can’t maintain a 7 min/mile for very long, but even after starting too fast, I was still able to hold on to an average of 7:25.
After the race, I quickly dropped Dustin off back at home and then met some friends for brunch at Cafe Maude (so good!)
Cheers to a really fun 10k. Get in Gear, you are definitely going to be my “rite of spring” next year!
Great race recap! For some reason, I thought this race would be more crowded than it appears to be.
I don’t know what it is with race t-shirts. I’d rather have dri-fit than cotton, but even the dri-fit race shirts seem to chafe too much to actually use for training.
Well, my husband loves his race shirts- dri-fit/technical ones- its just that the “women’s” cut just never fits me right and I never wear them! That’s the only reason I would want a cotton tee, so I will wear it for SOMETHING, vs. all the technical tees that I don’t wear…
The race was a little crowded at the start and parking could be tough if you don’t take the shuttles, but nothing too bad. Do it next year!
Great job and I bet it’s nice to have a fresh PR! I think the benefit of coaching is someone looking objectively at what we run and helping us when we might be scared of running faster or harder.
I also like the 10K distance quite a bit – it’s comfortably hard. You can’t just eke it out like a 5K (if you’re in reasonable shape) but it doesn’t take the same commitment as training for a half (or further).
Agree! It’s still a challenging distance…but fun to race!
You are right about the coach…he has access to all my runs and training, and seems to know what I am capable of…more than I seem to know myself 🙂
Awesome race, awesome recap! Great job on the new PR! I have been trying to challenge myself to get comfortable with being a bit more uncomfortable, too. Not easy! Keep up the good work!!! 🙂
Thank you Katie! If Instagram is right, you also got a 10k PR this weekend too?? Awesome! Can’t wait to read about it 🙂
Yes…getting comfortable with the uncomfortable is NOT easy!
I did the 10K too! I did it last year and managed to score a 5 minute PR (which isn’t hard for me to do since I’m not in the greatest shape). I went out too fast as well for about the first 2 miles. Then 2.5-3.5 of the race was suuuuuper slow, and then I started to pick back up but not to the same pace as the beginning. Another friend of mine told me she went out too fast as well. It’s just so easy to do! I just don’t know how people run slow when they feel… Read more »
Great job Allison! A 5 minute PR is great- good job!
It is always hard not to go out too fast 🙂
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