It's a very slow process - two steps forward, one step back - but I'm inching in the right direction. - Rob Reiner

September 16, 2013

Plaza 10K - A New PR!

Plaza 10K Start

Way back in April I signed up for the Plaza 10K.  I was at the Rock the Parkway expo and they had a booth.  You could register for really cheap and be entered in a giveaway for a $100 Plaza Gift card, so it seemed like the thing to do.

Fast forward a few months and I might not have made the same decision.  This ended up being my 3rd consecutive race weekend (which will end up being 5 weekends when it's all said and done).  I had just done a 20 mile training run (half marathon + 7 miles) the Sunday before so this was supposed to be a "recovery" week.  My training plan called for 12 miles.  Knowing I had the 10K on Sunday, I decided to do 8 miles on Saturday and then the 10K Sun.  I probably could have done the 12 miles Saturday, but I wanted to leave a little something in the tank for the race and I figured 8 miles, plus 6 hard miles over the course of two days would sort of be the equivalent of 12.

Sun coming up over Brush Creek
 
Anyway, as you know I have been doing the run/walk method for my marathon training.  My ratio is run 4 minutes, walk 1 minute.  This works well to get me through those long runs, but I think it also makes me a little bit of a "lazy" runner.  When I go out to do my shorter runs during the week I try not to run/walk, but find myself needing the breaks because my body is used to them.  My times lately have been terrible, but I try not to get discouraged and realize that I am training for a marathon right now, not a shorter distance race.

So, to say I wasn't PR ready is an understatement.  I knew my legs would be a bit tired from the 8 miles the day before, and I really had not planned to try to PR.  But I had decided that I wanted to run the race pretty hard.  Like I said above, I've been doing a lot of slow running, and I hadn't been pushing myself much, so I figured this was a good way to get in some miles and a "speed" workout at the same time.  I needed to push myself a little.  My goal was to finish around an 11:30 or so pace.

Race morning arrived and we had cooler weather - thank goodness.  My previous long run had temps in the upper 80s.  Race morning was not hot, but wasn't exactly cool either.  It was 71 at race start with humidity around 70%, but considering what we'd been dealing with for the last several weeks it was a welcome break.
Me & Sporting KC mascot

We got to the race and I was surprised by the number of people.  This is really just a 10K race, but they do also have a 2 mile run and a kids race.  There were over 3,000 people in the 10K - 418 finishers in my age group alone!  The race course really is beautiful as it runs around the gorgeous Kansas City Plaza and other well known spots.  It's also...mostly....flat, though it has one major hill that caused me some issues.

After spending 25 minutes in the porta potty line, it was literally time to race.  I ran from the porta potty straight to the start line.  Within just a few minutes we were off.  The first 4 miles of this race are mostly flat to downhill and I immediately found myself running at a pretty good pace.  Mile one went by very quickly and I looked down to see a 10:25 pace.  Hmmm....could I hold that?  I decided then I would try.  I knew right after mile 4 would come the long hill, so I would try to hold around a 10:30 pace for those first few miles.  My PR was a 10:41 (on my Garmin...a 10:50 official) so I knew I'd probably need to be around 10:30ish to PR.  I hadn't planned on PRing, but maybe I could.


Steady climb from mile 4 to 5, not my strong suit
I was really pushing it those next three miles, but was very consistent with a 10:29, 10:30, 10:29 pace for miles 2, 3 and 4.  And then right about mile four starts a gradual one mile climb (just under 100 feet of elevation climb).  It really isn't that big of a climb, but I'm not s strong hill climber and so it felt like it went on forever.  I just kept telling myself to take it easy and then I would finish strong at mile 6.  I finally finish mile 5 at a 10:59 pace - 30 seconds slower than my previous 4 miles.  And after that I was pretty spent....there was no real strong finish - I was hoping to be back in the 10:30s again, but I finished off mile 6 with a 10:53 - a little faster, but not as fast as it should have been.  I pushed it a little for the last .25, but I didn't have much left.  I ended up finishing with an official time of, 1:06:14 - a pace of 10:39, and a 1 minute and 11 second PR!


Pretty consistent pace until the hill

I found Jim and guess what - he had a 1 minute and 11 second PR too!  What a coincidence!  We both had PRs so it was a great day!  I think I have a much faster 10K time in me if I'm not training for a marathon, but time will tell I suppose.  I would love to do this race again next year and see how I do.
Me & Jim post race, both celebrating new PRs.

Stained Glass medal...pretty cool
There aren't very many 10K races around KC, and this one is definitely the premier 10K in Kansas City.  I would highly recommend it to anyone who lives in the area.  You got a great medal that would rival most marathon medals and an awesome gender specific vintage style technical tee.  Post race was pretty average, with a few bagels and some yogurt, but overall it was a great race and a great day.
Medal & Shirt

 


Up next:  Fox Valley 20 Mile race.  This will be my last really long run before Chicago and will hopefully give me a good idea of what I can do come race day.

Did anyone else PR this weekend???  Or at least just have some cooler weather? 


25 comments:

  1. Awesome! Congrats to both of you! That area is so hilly I am happy to hear they only put one of the bad hills in there.

    LOL, of course, I saw Brush Creek and thought "Flush" Creek ;)

    What a neat shirt and medal!

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    1. LOL, Brush Creek is definitely sort of better than it used to be.

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  2. You are so awesome and I'm so proud of you!

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  3. Yay for a shiny new PR! Those always feel so great! and I love that Jim got one too, lucky day for you both!

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  4. Are you doing the fox valley 20 in st. Charles, IL?? I did that last year with my sis before we did Chicago.I am hoping to be there to spectate - she's running the full this year there.

    Congrats on your new PR!!

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    1. Yes we'll be in St Charles. Maybe we'll see you there!

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  5. Congrats on a new PR! I know what you mean about the slower running with marathon training..I feel like a snail when I run because of my long slow runs :)

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  6. Congrats on the PR. I wish we had a 20 mile race. Great for training.

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    1. Well we don't technically have one either...this one is near Chicago.

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  7. Nice work - wow, race medal for a 10k, sweet!!

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  8. Great job PRing. Wow - on tired legs. I do like that medal. I have never done a 20 mile race. I don't think there are any around here. I have two race free weekends and I'm enjoying them. The end of the month is my half marathon but no more triathlons sadly.

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  9. So exciting that you and Jim had the same 1min 11 sec PR!

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  10. Yay - what a great time! Congrats on the new PR! I also ran a 10K this weekend, and I have completely lost all speed thanks to marathon training. Oof. That's a classy medal, too. I like that 3,000 runners is a lot of people for a KC race - the 10K I did had, oh...10,000... ;)

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    1. Wow - that is a big 10K. Our marathon is only about 10,000...maybe even a little less.

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  11. Great job on tired legs! Love those surprise PRs! I was a little discouraged during marathon training to see my hard-won speed disappear. That sounds like a really big 10k with do many just in your AG. And crazy that you and your husband PR'd by the same amount!

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  12. Congratulations. Gotta love a surprise PR! And it shows that your training is going well.

    It's amazing that you and Jim PRed by exactly the same amount of time.

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  13. Congrats on your PR and an awesome race!

    That's really fun that you both PR'd in the same time.

    It's definitely cooler here but a bit too cool for this time of year. Fall has definitely arrived.

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  14. Yay for a great PR! Well done! That is a nice medal as well. Looks like a really good event.

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  15. Way to go on a new PR!! That's awesome! You're really rocking it three weekends in a row. Keep up the good work!

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  16. lol on the exact same PR time difference - nice work!

    And yea that is a lot of bling for a 10K!

    NYC is a lot of fun, so many sights to see and good food to eat. And Central Park is awesome, now I see why NYC marathon is the #1 marathon in the US.

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  17. Congrats in both your PRs! Yall should've gotten a lotto ticket with 111 or something.

    That's some awesome race swag for a 10k. I think I need to move!

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  18. Very cool! And pretty speedy too! There are definitely benefits to living in a big city!

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  19. Congrats to you both on the twin PRs!! I'm sure yours was hundredths of seconds faster than Jim's, of course :)

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