Race Report: Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run
The Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run: “The Runners Rite of Spring”
One of my favorite parts of running is spending time with people that I care about.
Today that was my cousin, Christy. Christy is a veteran runner. She holds the family record for the most marathons. She’s run eight. I’ve run four. Her brother, John, has run three. One of her goals in 2013 is to PR in every distance that she races this year. She smoked her previous 5k PR a few weeks ago and was trying to do that again today for the ten mile distance.
Christy’s inspiring to be with. We’ve run together almost every time I have been in New York City or she has been in Baltimore the last couple of years. At the 2012 Baltimore Marathon last fall, she ran with me about 18 miles and paced me to a personal record. Today I was trying to return the favor.
Christy’s New York City Running Club, The Resevoir Dogs, had 15 runners come down for the Cherry Blossom festival. The club is made up of great people and I love what they are about:
The Reservoir Dogs are people who all love to run. We are a NYC running club consisting of members who are lifetime runners, and some who are just beginning. We are a midsize club whose primary goal is to encourage each member to achieve his or her own personal goals, whatever those may be.
Christy has a goal of running a race in all 50 states and Washington D.C. Today she checked D.C. off the list. After the Cherry Blossom, she’s completed 16 states in her quest.
I had two goals today: (1) enjoy being with my cousin and (2) keep up with her and help her stay on pace to a PR. I’ve only run once since Rock N Roll USA Marathon and I road a challenging training ride yesterday getting ready for Cohutta, my first NUE mountain bike race which is in three weeks. I was looking forward to getting into a good groove enjoying what looked to be a beautiful morning.
After a 3:45 a.m. wake up (ouch), I did my normal race preparation routine in an hour so I could get on the road by 5 a.m. I drove to Greenbelt and then grabbed the metro to Chinatown and walked the 4 blocks to Christy’s hotel. I was about half an hour early for the meeting which is both rare and very fortunate because I confused where the hotel was and ended up meeting Christy with only 25 minutes to get to the start and check my bag instead of the 45 minutes we had planned. Fortunately, that all went smoothly and I met her and two of her teammates back at the start with 5 minutes to spare.
The weather was slightly cool at the start but perfect for the race. Shorts and a light long sleeve shirt was all I wore and I was very comfortable The only thing I wished I’d had were a pair of throwaway gloves. My hands were a little chilly at the start but by the first mile marker I was very comfortable.
We were shooting for an 8:45 minute mile pace or faster and Christy wanted to start at around 9 minute miles and then settle into a little quicker pace the second half of the race. She’s a smart runner that way.
You can see our splits on the left. We were nearly perfect in terms of increasing our pace over the 10 miles. We slowly and steadily increased our pace from 9:00 minute miles down to an 8:00 minute final mile.
Mile seven on the chart was a blip for me because I had to stop at a spot a pot and then run a quick mile to catch back up. Because I was cutting it close at the start, I missed a last minute bathroom pit stop so when I got a chance during the race I took it.
Christy ran a great race. She crossed the line at 1:26, shaving two minutes off her previous ten miler record. I crossed one second behind her.
We had a great day. The course was nice, support services were great. It was crowded but manageable and the fans were enthusiastic, especially for the last mile which is always awesome.
I bolted soon after the race to get back to the family. After the four hour ride yesterday and morning gone today, I was ready to hangout with my kiddos and Elise.