Monday, April 11, 2011

Pear Blossom 5K & 10 Mile Race Report

With a generous sponsorship from my parents (never turn down a free race), I had the opportunity to participate in the Pear Blossom Run over the weekend.  Both my mom and dad were doing the 5K and I signed up for the 10 mile run.  In case you don't feel like spending all day reading my report and looking at my pictures, I'll give you the short version... I had a blast and pr'd too (hard not to do considering I've never raced 10 miles before... ha ha!).  If you're in it for the long version, here goes:

Dan, the kids and I headed down to Klamath Falls to visit our families.  He and the kids stayed at his parent's house while I opted to crash at my parents since we planned to leave at 4am to get to Medford in time for the race.  I didn't get a whole lot of sleep, but the 4 hours I did get were solid ones where I didn't have to get up with any kids.  After a quick 1 1/2 hours in the car (and maybe a little nap) we made it to the race start.  Since the 5K was at 7am and the 10 miler wasn't until 8:20 I decided to run with my parents in their race too.
Here we are pre race:

It seriously took me 5 shots to get this one, I kept cutting of my parents' heads... guess I just wanted to be a camera hog.
And a few action shots:
my mom, looking focused and working hard

my dad

a couple ladies in foo foo skirts
Although my dad has barely run in the past few months and has been struggling with some sort of calf injury he couldn't let my mom beat him so he took off without her.  The 5K was an out and back course, we ran back into my dad shortly before my mom got to the turn around.
Mostly I ran with my mom, but did a little bit of running back and forth between the two of them.  I didn't do anything super annoying like run backwards, mostly I just talked and attempted to take pictures with my phone... I think I need to work on that a bit more.

My parents both did awesome.  It was a lot of fun to encourage them along and watch them both finish.  Overall, I had a lot of fun and ended up getting in a nice little 3.5 mile warm up in.  Unfortunately though, I still had over 30 minutes to wait until my race started and by the time it did I wasn't feeling very warm anymore. 

So, onto the 10 miler.  This was the biggest race I have ever participated in.  There were almost 1600 people running.  I should have been nervous because, well it was a race and usually I am freaking out before races but for some reason I was amazingly calm.  
I wasn't really sure how to race 10 miles since I hadn't done it before.  I found a great article HERE about running your best 10 miles ever and used it along with some great advice from the super speedy Amanda to do it as a progression run (basically start at a pace and then get progressively faster).  The start was kind of funny, they had some guys (and gals) in old time clothes with some muzzleloaders to shoot at the start.  The announcer said "We're going to count down from 10... 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4" and then one of the guns went off, there was a brief second of silence and maybe a little laughter then all the other guns went off too... so we were off.
The course was an out and back.  It started in front of City Hall and ran past a few stores before going out along some farm type land.

I expected to be running along some pear orchards and amongst the blossoming trees, given the name of the race and all, but apparently (ha ha, get it a"pear"antly) the orchards are on the other side of town.  The only pears I got to see were the mile markers painted on the side of the course.  Oh well.  There was some pretty decent crowd support and the police did a great job cruising up and down the highway controlling traffic and blocking the side streets.  There was also great volunteer support at the water stations.

I wasn't sure if I would need to fuel for this race, but took a Gu along just in case.  I was feeling pretty good, but since I had it I decided to take it just before the halfway point.  It was about that time I was super surprised to see my parents too.  Even though they told me they were going to nap in the car until I finished, they had sped over to the turn around to cheer me on... and take this picture of me stuffing my face gracefully fueling.
bad, bad heel strike

I was really happy to see them and also excited that I could hand off my gloves and the empty Gu packet to my mom.  It may not look like it, but it was a flawless hand off.

And then I was off to finish the race.
That was also the last my parents saw of me until about 15 minutes after I had finished.  Because of all the closed roads, they had a really hard time getting back to the start/finish.  Even though they missed my finish, I was happy to have them there in the middle and given the choice probably wouldn't have changed it.

Anyway, the race itself went really pretty well.  My goal was to go out at around 8 min pace for the first few miles then work my way down to somewhere below 7:30 and maybe as low as 7 if I was feeling up to it.  I'm really pleased that I was able to do just that.  Here are my splits from my Nike+ band (which all of a sudden reports splits... hmmm, it's about time!)
Unfortunately, the Nike band wasn't very accurate, only measuring my run at 9.6 miles, so I don't have my final mile split and the rest are probably off a bit.  I know that it was pretty fast though.  When I hit the 9 mile marker I was still feeling pretty good and decided to pretend that it was the last of a mile repeat and give it all I had left.  It was the longest feeling mile I have ever run but it was so much fun and I passed a bunch of people.  I'm pretty positive I finished up well under 7 minute pace.

Here are the final stats (based off my chip time):

time 1:15:11, avg pace 7:31, overall place 193 out of 1586, 42nd of 859 women & 13th of 149 in my age group (30-34)

There was a street fair and a BBQ and some other festivities going on, but we opted to grab our loot (a hand towel and Gatorade) and head back over the mountain.  We did make a quick stop at Sonic to refuel though.  Mmmmmm.
somebody needs to do something about that ugly Boise State sticker in the window. bleh :P
I am so glad that I had the opportunity to run this race.  I came away really feeling like I ran a smart race and confident that my marathon training might actually be working and that I will be ready in a few short weeks for Eugene.  

Unfortunately, I also learned that my new Lululemon (sorry can't link the actual skirt, the site is under construction) skirt that I love and have worn on a few shorter runs will not be making it on marathon day, I spent the first couple of miles pulling down the shorts until they finally found a resting place that caused a pretty nasty chaffing on my leg.  ☹  I still think it's a great skirt and will review it in full at another time, it is not however going to be part of my marathon outfit.


Teamarcia said...

Congrats on a great race! Very nice progressive splits!
I love that your parents ran too. Is that the Lulu skirt with the pleats in back? If so I wore it last year in Boston but over capris. Bummer about the chafing.

Beth said...

Awesome job! You ran that race perfectly!

LB said...

way to go mom and dad!!! your race wasnt too shabby either :) you look so cute in your pigtails and stripy arm sleeves. good job, you ROCK!

P said...

Congrats on a really well-executed race!! I love it when everything comes together like that. You are going to ROCK your marathon!!!!!

Quinton J said...

So nice to see mom and dad out there. that 'bad, bad heel strike' photo is my fav. you look like you're blazing fast in that shot.

BeePieRuns said...

Wow! Awesome job on your race and it looks like it was tons of fun, too!

Zaneta said...

What a fun day!! I love it when my parents get to come to races too! :) Great race! You look cute in all your pictures! :)

L.B. said...

Nice job! Your time rocks! And looks like you had a great time with your parents. Nice to have that support on the course, I'd imagine.

btw the running sleeves I won here, I wore them for my marathon on Saturday. They worked great! Thank you so much!!

Photina said...

Congrats on a great race!

XLMIC said...

Nicely done :)

I love how you ran with your parents before cranking out a quick 10-mile race!

AshleyR said...

Great job! I want to know about the striped arm sleeves!

Amanda@runninghood said...

IMpressive Girlie!! Awesome job! And you're so darn cute doing it!!

Meredith said...

1) Check out those negative splits!! Nice job!!

2) Racing with BOTH of your parents! How awesome is that?? Tell them both how AWESOME they are!!! :)


FruitFly said...

1st off, you look ridiculously cute in your outfit! It is a shame your skirt caused some chaffing.

And do you realize that your 10 mile finish time is only 3 minutes slower than my 10K PR?? You are amazingly fast! I want you to rub off on me a bit.

Congratulations on your great race. I think you are going to be amazing in Eugene!

Heather said...

Awesome job. How fun is that to race with your parents.

Can we all just learn to accept the heel strike? Please?

Julie D. said...

Congrats! Awesome splits. I have never run a 10 miler either and would have no idea how to pace myself. You obviously, worked it out just right. Nice job! Looks like a great time...too cool to run with your parents too. Congrats to them!

Richelle said...

Congrats to you and your parents! You looked super cute in your race day outfit, btw!

Janet said...

Hey, I had fun running with you. You made the time go faster without having to think about running. You kept me well entertained. I love you, Mom