Tuesday, March 24, 2009

First 10K complete!!!

Sunday I finished my first ever 10K! I chose to do the one associated with the Mercer Island Half Marathon, for a few reasons: 1) it is conveniently three months away from my first half marathon (Seattle Rock N' Roll) and therefore serves as a good benchmark 2) there aren't alot of 10Ks around here, so I didn't have many options.

The course was SUPER hilly. Like, crazy hilly - check it out if you don't believe me. I don't think I ran more than a quarter mile on flat ground. It also started raining halfway through the race. Totally awesome, I know. I also puked as I got to the finish line (at the top of yet another HILL). That's why I don't have any victory shots - my friend only got pics of me pre-, mid-, or post-boot. So, lots of sucky circumstances, but I finished in 1:15:56, which was my goal (1:15)! I'm very pleased with myself.

I definitely will be more careful with my long runs for the half marathon, though. I want to be consistently running close to the race distance (so, 10-11 miles) for at least three to four long runs before the race. For the 10K, I hit five miles the week before the race, which is what most programs recommend, but I still don't really feel like I was ready for the distance. Who knows, maybe I was but the hills just sucked the life out of me :P

In summary, here are my lessons learned:
-Don't eat ANYTHING less than two hours before the beginning of the race. And you don't have to grab water at every stop on the course. I had a breakfast smoothie about an hour before the race started - only about 8-12 oz. But I puked pink - def was still too full. Unless you have like 5% body fat, you really don't need that much fuel before or during the race - that's what fat is for! You need a little something basically if you plan on running an hour or more.
-Make sure you have your ipod loaded with enough music for the entire race - keep it pretty close to your goal time so you can pace yourself
-Be able to run about 85% of your race distance a few times in the weeks before the race, not just once

Next up, I think this race might be fun. 5Ks are definitely easy for me now, so I think it will be fun to do a race where there's no pressure except improving my time. It would be totally crazy if I could get less than 30 minutes, which is doable if I put some effort into speed training. Plus, Alki Beach has a beautiful view of Seattle so it will be a really scenic race.

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