Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Sweetheart Run 2018

The past couple years I've run the 10k at the Sweetheart Run and attempted to either run a certain time or a PR. The course is not the best for a fast time and I'm always not quite in good shape in February so it's usually a disappointing race for me. I was again tempted to try for a fast 10k time to see how my training this spring compares to my training last fall when I almost ran a half-marathon PR. But first and foremost I wanted to run on a team with Jeremy again and he was running the double so I decided to do the double as well. I am so glad I did because it was so much fun! The 5k started at 7:45 and the 10k was at 8:30. I ran a mile warm up before the 5k and then found mom and dad at the porta potties. We headed to the start area together and I found Jeremy. I started a little further back from the starting line than he did and chatted with my training buddy, April, before the race start. She was convinced after looking around at who was there that I'd win the race. I told her I wasn't planning to all out race the 5k since I was doing the double but she was still convinced I'd be the first female.
Ready to spectate!
Taking off at the start of the 5k.

We took off and I caught up to Jeremy within the first quarter mile and we ran side by side the rest of the race. I was running what felt comfortably fast. Not all out, but not running easy. I'd say a little faster than tempo pace. I felt good and was enjoying running with Jeremy. I talked to him a few times before realizing he had headphones in and couldn't hear me. By the mile mark I had passed all the women ahead of me and was the first female. We went through the first mile in 6:51. After the turn around I saw it appeared I had a significant lead on the woman in 2nd place. I also heard someone cheer for April and tell her to keep reeling her in so I assumed she was catching up to me and Jeremy. Our 2nd mile was 6:55. During the last mile I felt like Jeremy was picking it up a bit. I wanted to finish with him so I stayed with him stride for stride. We ran the last mile in 6:41. As we approached the finish line we didn't really kick it in, just coasting to the finish. A couple of guys just running the 5k sprinted past us and we just maintained pace. I didn't think we really picked it up at all at the finish but we ran the last portion at 6:29 pace. I saw the clock had just clicked over to 21 minutes as we approached the finish line and smiled when I saw them stretching a first female finisher banner across the line. Jeremy said he saw that and moved over because he didn't want to go through the banner with me. They followed me in the chute to hand me the banner to take with me which I thought was neat.
Me and Jeremy finishing the 5k.
Mom and dad finishing the race.
I finished 1st female and 10th out of 877 overall in 21:18. Jeremy was 11th overall and 3rd in his age group in 20:20 since he'd started closer to the starting line than I had. I was really excited that 6:49 pace had felt so comfortable. Going into the race I figured if I had a really awesome day I might be able to run around 22 minutes in the 5k and 45 minutes in the 10k. I had really beat my expected time in the 5k! I was also really pleased that I ran faster than the Runway Run while feeling comfortable when I'd felt fairly miserable during the Runway Run. I planned to run a mile cool down/warm up for the 10k and headed back on the course to run back with mom and dad. Dad had an asthma attack the night before and has been battling some breathing issues so he was running the race with mom. They finished in 34:27 which put mom 364th overall and 5th in her age group. Dad was 13th in his age group. I finished out my cool down and then hit the porta potties one more time before lining up for the 10k. I found Jeremy and we stood together at the start. Once we were off I was super excited to see Ty, mom, dad, Carter, and Elise and waved to them as we went by. Pretty quickly I had moved into 2nd female and the woman ahead of me was just running the 10k.
Taking off for the 10k.
Waving to Carter and Elise at the start.

Jeremy said he planned to run 7:30-8:00 pace for the 10k so we broke apart and I tried to close the gap between me and the woman in front. I thought it would be cool if I could win both the 5k and the 10k but she already had a significant lead on me by the first mile mark which I went through in 7:09. During the first mile my legs were feeling a bit heavy and sluggish but by the 2nd mile they were starting to feel better. There are also some nice downhills in the 2nd mile which helped. I went through that mile in 7:04. I could still see the woman ahead of me but there was a pretty decent gap. During the 3rd mile I was really focusing in on her and I went through the mile in 6:58. As we neared the turn around I knew I'd hit the big hills during mile 5. I figured since I'd run the 5k already my legs would really burn going up the hills and the woman in front would get an even bigger lead on me. I started thinking quite a bit about the hills and just wishing I could get them over with already. Once we hit the turn around I saw Jeremy and we cheered for each other.

On the way back down Riverside Drive the 10k runners still on their way out were all really supportive and cheering for me. A few told me I was the first woman but I knew they were mistaken. One guy got really excited and high fived me. When I went past April she cheered really loudly. It was fun to have all the support. I went through mile 4 in 7:03. As I got closer to the big hill I told myself to just hold onto 7:30 pace for that mile if I could. Going up the hill my legs were burning and I pressed up it the best I could. When you get up that hill it really doesn't even level out, you just start going up another more gradual but longer hill. I was proud that I was able to get my pace back down fairly quickly after getting up the hill but I'd fallen off to 8:10 pace by the top of the hill! I went through mile 5 in 7:30 and was glad I'd been able to hold it there. I was surprised that the hills were the first time it looked like I was closing the gap on the woman in front of me even just a little bit.  I went through mile 6 in 7:05. I didn't have anyone close to me and I knew the woman in front had probably close to a minute lead on me. I just focused on maintaining the gap and not letting her get further ahead of me. As I approached the finish line I saw 44 on the clock and got excited thinking I was going to be under 45 minutes but I just missed it, finishing in 45:02. I finished out the last portion of the race in 6:49 and enjoyed seeing everyone cheering at the finish again.
Me finishing the 10k.

Jeremy finishing the 10k.

My Garmin showed the course distance at 6.32 miles and my average pace was 7:08. I'm so glad I wasn't trying for a fast 10k time because I finished in 45:02 but, according to a pace calculator, if the distance had been exact I would have run around 44:15. That's a big difference! Now that I've done the double and enjoyed it so much, that's what I'd like to do from here on out. Just doing the 10k isn't worth it because it's not a good race to go for a fast time and doing the double was so much fun! I had a blast. Getting to run the 5k beside Jeremy was the most fun I've had at a race in a long time, I just loved it! I finished 7th out of 493 overall, 2nd female, and 1st in my age group. Jeremy finished 17th overall and 2nd in his age group with a time of 48:09. I watched him finish while I drank a bottle of water and then I headed out for a mile cool down. With both races along with my warm ups and cool downs, I got in over 12 miles for the day!

We ate pancakes after the race and then stayed for awards. We weren't sure how Jeremy and I had done as a team so I went to look at results. They didn't have the double teams up yet but I had placed 2nd overall in the double and Jeremy had placed 6th so we figured we'd done pretty well as a team. They messed up and didn't take us out of the 5k team results so they gave us the award for 1st place 5k team. We also would have won the 10k team but they took us out of those results and we won the double team. They gave out a box of chocolates for the overall awards so we got a box of chocolates for being the 1st place double team and I got boxes for 1st female in the 5k and 1st female in the double. We both also got age group awards in both races. They gave out mugs so we got quite a few of those. Ty thought it was hilarious that we had so many mugs, plaques, and boxes of chocolates so he took a picture. Carter liked that the 5k medal was magnetic and went inside the 10k medal and kept playing with mine. He was disappointed that his medal didn't also have magnets so he could stick it to my 5k medal. We had so much fun and I was pleased that I was able to run faster than I had expected, especially because my speed workout on Wednesday hadn't gone very well so I went into the race with pretty low expectations. Read about last year's Sweetheart Run here, 2016's here, and 2015's here.
Team Sweet Sibs!
With some of our winnings after the race.
Jeremy and my winnings. The blue boxes underneath are the chocolates.
Since we didn't have race shirts we took this picture instead of a shirt picture.


  1. Pretty fun day, but cold. I saw pictures from last year, and it was so much warmer.

    1. Yes, it was! It turned out to be nice and warm later in the day though. Remember the year it was 18 degrees?!

  2. What a fun event, and you and Jeremy won so.much.stuff!! I think you're going to have a fantastic season.

    1. It was a lot of fun!!!! This training cycle has been odd. My tempo runs and long runs are right where I was when I ran my 1:31:49 but my speed work is slower. I’m curious how things will translate in my half!