May 27, 2013

Elizabeth River Run 10k 2013 Recap

You probably already read that I ran the Elizabeth River Run 10k on Saturday with several goals in mind.  I am happy to report that I had a fantastic race and exceeded my own expectations for the day. 
It was a beautiful day, albeit chilly!
I had several friends racing and planned to meet up with them at about 7:30 on race morning at the Ntelos Wireless Pavilion, which was where the starting line was located.  It was a VERY chilly morning and I noticed many people in long pants and long sleeves.  I immediately was glad that I had tossed in a sweatshirt that I wore to walk to packet pick-up.  I was easily able to find the line for my last name (they were in alphabetical groups) and got my bib and shirt.  This race provides a nice tech shirt and I was excited to see that they had a nod to the Boston Marathon on the back of the shirt (some cool news coverage about the Boston connection with some of the local runners here).  I walked back to the car to leave my stuff and hung out for a few minutes, keeping warm until I headed to meet my friends. 
Allie and I - we met at this race in 2012!

It was quite chilly and I bounced around to try to keep warm and was easily able to find my buddies.  We snapped some photos, complaining of the weather and noting this was supposed to be summer.  
More friends - Heather, Stephen and I
A few minutes later, it was time to walk to the start, which was luckily protected from the wind off the water by a few large buildings.  I made my way to the front-ish part of the pack, about 1/3 of the way back from the starting line.  A moment later, the gun went off and the runners were moving.  As usual, there was a bit of a bottleneck crossing the starting line, but that eased up quickly. 

We headed down Crawford Parkway and made a few turns to head toward the Waterfront.  And then we wove through Olde Towne, passing gorgeous homes and running down quaint streets.  I even saw a colleague out for a morning job (not part of the race) and waved hello.  At this point, I noticed that my shoe felt loose and noticed the lace was coming untied.  I was annoyed I had neglected to double knot the laces and chalked it up to a rookie mistake, pulling over to the side to quickly re-tie them. 

My first few miles were under 9 minute pace and my goal was 9 minute even pace for the first 3 miles.  I was feeling great and was settling into a comfortable rhythm.  We made the turn into the Naval Medical Center (miles 3-5) and I knew this part had the potential to be challenging since it wound along the water and the wind was strong.  The loop around mile 4.5ish was brutal - it felt like a strong headwind the entire time and I could feel myself getting a bit tired.  I tried to focus on just getting back to the main part of the course, which was more protected and gun it home. 
Approaching the finish line
I saw the mile 5 marker and knew it was time to get moving.  I could tell from my pace that I was on track to easily meet my goal of 54-55 and could beat that.  It was no longer a matter of if I would PR, but by how much.  I started flagging people to pass as extra motivation to push hard to the finish and slowly started picking off other runners.  And then the finish line was in sight - hooray!  I focused on my stride and then crossed the line noticing I finished in 52 minutes and some change - WOOHOO!!  This was a 10 minute PR for me, improving my time from the October Wicked 10k and a 14 minute improvement over last year's race.  I was ecstatic, to say the least! 
You can see the race clock in the background, just over 53 minutes
I high fived friends at the finish, many hitting PRs...probably due to the cool temps and flat course.  We enjoyed pizza and beer at the finish.  This race was fantastic and a great way to start the holiday weekend.
Happy runner!
More race thoughts...
Overall experience A-: The course was great and additional water stops were helpful this year.  I would love a women's cut tech shirt, but that's not a deal breaker.
Race Organization A: The packet pick-up was easy and the pre-race emails were helpful.  No complaints.
Value A: A nice tech shirt and a fast, flat course for $30.  Can't beat it!
Final Time: 52.53
Division Place: 11/77 (!!)
Pace: 8:47



  1. So glad you had a good race! Cold and flat is my favorite way to run!

    1. Thanks, Monica. Cold and flat is great!

  2. Way to go, girl!! You had a great race...way to crush that PR!

  3. Congrats Christine, that is an amazing time!!

    1. Thanks, Lauren - I was really pleased and a little surprised.

  4. Looks like a great race! CONGRATS on the PR!

  5. That is so awesome! Glad you had an awesome race and a new PR!

  6. Sounds like a fun race, congrats on the PR!!!!!

  7. Way to go! It's such a great feeling when you had a great race. Congrats! :)

  8. Hey Christine,Thought I had already left a "congrats" message on your PR. Way to go! Love, Auntie Allie