Shamrock Shuffle - Race Recap

I am not very experienced with the 10K distance. I have run a few, here and there, but I think I have only actually run 4 of them, ever. 2 of the 4 are the same race, and they are not chip timed, so I count them (especially because it was my FIRST 10K), but I am not sure how accurate my time is for them, etc. So my 10 history can be summed up right here in these few races:

July 4, 2011 - Conquer the Hill 10K (56:59)
August 6, 2011 - Lady Distance Classic (56:42)
November 24, 2012 - 102nd Thanksgiving Day Race (post broken foot) (1:04:48)
July 4, 2012 - Conquer the Hill 10K (56:35)

There it is. My full 10K racing can be summed up into 4 races. Only one since I have been blogging consistently about running (and therefore has a recap included with it!). The Thanksgiving Day race was actually a ton of fun despite the terrible time. It cemented my decision to train for the Flying Pig with Jes, as I carried her across the finish line after her knee gave out (which definitely did not help our time any!) I am really looking forward to running this one again this year.

But this past Saturday I ventured back into the 10K world for the Shamrock Shuffle in West Chester. My SIL ran it last year as part of her "race every month" goal, and said it was a fun race with a good after party, so when I was searching for races to CRAM into the months before the baby (not knowing when I would be back on the running train afterward) and I saw it, I registered.
Karen also had plans to run, so at the baby party we discussed what time we would meet, where we would park, etc. The place we agreed on was about a half mile from the starting line and had shuttles running (if we wanted them) and it was outside of the race course, so it would be easy to get out of after the race, since there was a huge block party going on.

We met in the parking lot of Uno's Chicago Grill at 8 am, for the 8:30 am start time. We planned to not take the shuttle and jog over to the start in order to get a bit of a warm up in before the race. We walked through Starbucks first to get a quick restroom break (Bebe Nix still likes to go to the bathroom ALL THE TIME) so we did not have to wait in what we anticipated to be very long lines at the port-o-lets (we were right!) We jogged for about 15 minutes (a mile and a half) before getting to the start line. I wish we had jogged for just a smidge longer, as we were waiting a bit for the race to start and my legs started to tighten up just a little (what I was hoping to avoid by getting a warm up in). We had no plans to stick together during the race.

The horn blew and off we went! I, being the slacker that I am, did not charge my Garmin AGAIN and was running with my phone. I have the runtastic app, and I was using that this time. I kept the screen on my phone turned off however, so I only had updates when it talked to me (I have it set up to give me updates at the mile marks). This was a HILLY course. A HUGE up (followed by a steep down). Someone told me that they saw someone faceplant at the bottom of the hill during last year's race. I was doing my best not to trash my quads TOO much, so I was trying to take it easy, even on the down.

Here is my Runtastic breakdown:
Oh, hello, hill. Dang. It was a ROUGH one. As you can see, I managed to keep my speed decently consistent even on the huge uphill (although you definitely can see the ups and downs!) I finished the race at 55:25, a MAJOR 10K PR for me!

And I had a great excuse to wear my new pro compression socks.

They will be making another appearance this weekend at the Heart Mini, which is ON St. Patrick's Day!


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