August 12, 2014

Chuck 12 Race Recap

For the Charles Street 12 Miler this past weekend, I went in a bit unfazed. I am in the thick of marathon training and would have been running a similar mileage anyways. However, I was happy to be running in a race setting as a nice change of pace. I LOVE the blue Under Armour half zip premium this year and even got an extra goodie-a sweet UA backpack for completing the Charm City Run B3 race series. 

CharlesStreet12race

I didn't sleep well the night before and had to get up even earlier to get in an extra 4 slow miles to make the total for the day 16 miles, since I skipped my long run last week.  Sarah was meeting me at my apartment so my wonderful boyfriend could wake up to take us to the 7:30 AM start in Towson.  I had been in a rush to just barely get in my 4 extra miles before we left for the race so I didn't grab everything I wanted or do things like double knot my shoelaces (which I found out at mile 3).  I'm so not a morning person. 


I met up with my marathon training friends, found Sarah at the start line and was even recognized by a blog reader which was awesome (Hi Katy!).  It's probably from all my tweeting and constant chatter about Charm City Run :)

It was really cool and partly cloudy before the start which made for perfect running weather. 


CharlesStreet12race2
First time wearing my new skirt I won from a RunningSkirts giveaway!
Last year I went into this race feeling a little under the weather but raced it anyways. The rolling hills of the course definitely made it a harder race for me last year.  This year I'm more focused on my training instead of trying to be a speed racer (mostly) so I decided to use this is a half marathon (almost) practice run with my marathon race pace. I figured I could try to hold my goal marathon race pace of 8:05-8:10 for 10 miles and then let myself speed up the last two to the finish.  

I pretty ran with a couple friends for parts of the race, but it was mostly a solo effort.  Miles 1-7 seriously flew by. I was keeping an eye on my pace and holding it around 8:00.  I didn't stop at any water stops (although there was plenty) and just stuck to the watermelon Nuun I was carrying.  I also stuck to my training fuel plan and had a salted caramel Gu at mile 6. I even got to say hello to Lisa around this time. 

The course mostly runs right down Charles Street from Towson into Baltimore with a few detours. It's nice to run through areas I know well but don't always run around. 

After mile 7 my legs started to feel all the rolling hills and the 4 miles I had run before the race. My hamstrings were definitely tight, especially because I had been so busy and not gotten in a solid foam-rolling session this past week.   

However I kept chugging along and once I got to the Mt. Vernon area of the city I knew we didn't have long before the finish line now.  I was cruising downhill towards the Inner Harbor and decided to speed up after at mile 9, feeling pretty good about my race pace practice. Once we were looping around Federal Hill around mile 11 I was ready for the race to be over and was all smiles coming down the Inner Harbor towards Power Plant and the finish line.

I finished strong and didn't even look at what time my watch said, which is a first. I was just happy, the sun was shining, and all my miles were run for the day. 

Later  I found out my official time was 1:33:34, 7:48 min/mile pace and 18th in my division. Okay so I was feeling good and a little speedier than planned. The weird thing is that I feel maybe I haven't gotten any faster or stronger from last year but then things happen where I unexpectedly tie my half marathon PR or beat my time in the Charles Street 12 from last year. Granted it was only 9 seconds faster than last year where I was feeling under the weather, but still, I felt good running this.  

CharlesStreet12race3

 After the race, I found my friends again and some November Project ladies, took some photos, had a post-race summer shandy beer, and got my B3 race series medal. I love bling! They apparently had some wraps and chips, but I was saving my appetite for some brunch. 
CharlesStreet12racemedals

Afterwards was a nice cool-down walk (now my legs were feeling really tight) back to my apartment followed by some of my favorite pancakes in the city-red velvet pancakes from Teavolve, eggs and sausage, and mimosas.  This was all followed by a long nap!
redvelvetpancakes
Yes I ate all of this, except for the toast!
Overall a great training run and race! Everything was really organized, and I love the unique course from the city that has you starting out in the county and running some roads not usually run in Baltimore races.  


Have you had a really good run or race recently?  Do you like to plan out paces for runs or just go with the flow? 


26 comments:

  1. So major props to you for sticking with your plan! I know how easy it is to get carried away in these races. So glad we got to at least start it together and I know we'll be running plenty of other races in the next few years which is SO exciting! When I start marathon training next summer I know who I'll be going to for company on long runs :)

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    1. Thanks, it's the first time I stuck to a plan that wasn't a pace that was really pushing me to PR or something. ALL THE BALTIMORE RUNNING TOGETHER :)

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  2. Great job! I'm in awe of you. I plan out my paces but it doesn't always work out. I guess I'm more of a go with the flow type of person because when I try to stick with paces and I miss it...I'm really hard on myself. Really I don't know how I"m going to race until 3-5 miles into it. That's why I'm not a 5k runner.

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    1. Thanks girl, you inspire me too! I sometimes have a plan, sometimes don't. I think viewing this more as a training run and less as racing was a big change in mindset for me! And yesss 5Ks are so hard to get into it right off the bat!

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  3. Awesome! Do you know Lauren at Run Salt Run? She lives in the Bmore area and also ran this race! Seems like you ladies are somewhat similarly paced and should definitely know each other :)

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    1. Thanks for stopping by! I just started reading Run Salt Run a couple weeks ago! I definitely need to meet up with her sometime though-thanks for the tip :)

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  4. Nice! You did awesome! I loved reading that you didn't even look at your watch as you crossed the line. Must have meant you were really enjoying the run!

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    1. Thanks so much-it definitely means it wasn't about my overall time and about having a GOOD RUN!

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  5. Sounds like the perfect relaxed race and with a bonus time! You should be feeling really good going into your marathon!! And, those pancakes? Yes please!!

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  6. Lauren! I'm so thrilled that you linked up this week! What a great race weekend! And the treats - wow! An Under Armor zip-up and a backpack?!? I need to run some different races, girl! :) Congratulations on being able to stick with your plan; no matter what this race may/may not tell you, sounds like you are on the right track and making progress toward a great marathon. Can't wait to follow along in your journey. Thanks for linking up and great post!

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    1. Thanks so much-I'm glad I stumbled upon your link up and blog :)

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  7. You did amazing and that's awesome you had fun! I would have been a mess if I forgot stuff in the morning but it sounds like it worked out perfectly. And yah to good running weather

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    1. Thanks for reading. Good weather makes all the difference for long distance races!

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  8. Great job sticking to your pace! I love doing races in place of a regular long run once in a while. Getting the extra miles in before is never fun but now you can say you did an awesome 16 mile training run with 12 race pace miles- that's pretty amazing!

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    1. I usually have trouble not racing races all out but it was nice to have a pace goal in line with my training!

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  9. Awesome job!! I love when a race goes unexpectedly well! In fact, my half marathon PR was totally by accident lol!

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  10. nice job! those red velvet pancakes just made me so hungry - jealous! where is teavolve?

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    1. AH KAIT. We must go! It's one of my favorite brunch places in the city. Right on the edge of Harbor East and Fells Point on Aliceanna under the Eden Apartments bldg.

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  11. you skirt is so super cute! annnd those pancakes look amazing!

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    1. Thanks so much-it's from runningskirts.com and has little colored race distances all over it as the pattern!

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  12. Great recap! I can't wait to run this next year! I'm currently training for my first half so I'm really trying to just slow it down on my long runs so I can finish strong. Work in progress. Glad yours went so well.

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    1. Thanks for reading-you should definitely sign up for it next year! Slow long runs are key for training-you are just building endurance so don't worry about pace!

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  13. Awesome recap! You killed it! That race was so much fun.
    Also I need to get myself to that brunch place stat. Red velvet pancakes!?

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    1. Thanks so much! Teavolve is AWESOME for brunch, everything is so yummy. They also have a red velvet latte that is delicious but goes down way too easy!

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