Race Report: George Washington Parkway Classic 10 Mile Run

April 27, 2010

Another 10-miler done!  This one wasn’t as happy as the Cherry Blossom 10-miler two weeks prior, mostly because of my bad attitude and poor choices.

Cliff’s Notes Version:  Weather held and it was great to run with my best friend, but I ended up needing to walk a lot.

Long, boring detailed Version:

Packet pickup was a breeze!  The race was sponsored by a local running store, so I was able to run over to the store and pick up my packet during my lunch break the Tuesday before the race.

The shirt is cute!  I like the sign with the 10.0 on it – it looks just like the signs they have on the GW Parkway for the tourists.

I really liked that they had different shirts for the girls. I love flattering cuts 🙂

The bib had my name on it!

So, as I said, I had a bad attitude about this race 😦  I’m usually a very upbeat person (annoyingly so, if you ask some), but the logistics of race morning just seemed like a pain. It’s a point-to-point race, so we are supposed to find street parking near the finish line and jump on a shuttle to the starting line. The race started at 8am, but the shuttles stop running at 7am. The website said to expect a ½ hour wait for the shuttle. So when you factor in driving ½ hour to get there, finding parking, walking over to the shuttle, taking the shuttle…. You end up needing to wake up HOURS earlier than for a normal race.  I also had a bad attitude because the weather forecast was dismal – 70% chance of rain and thunderstorms.

My good friend Jenny stayed overnight at my place because she lives far away in MD, and it wouldn’t been crazy for her to get up early enough to make the drive. We both set our alarms for 5:15…. And I woke up with a start at 6am. EEK!  We were 45 minutes behind schedule!  We got ready in a hurry and ran through the rain to the car. On the drive over, I realized I had forgotten my timing chip – shoot! I knew we’d have a slim chance of catching the last shuttle, and I was secretly hoping we didn’t make it.

But we made it! We luckily found a parking spot pretty easily and ran to the shuttle just in time!  Plus it had stopped raining. All of my excuses were disappearing, shoot! The race start area is right at the entrance to Mount Vernon, Geo Wash’s home!  I’ve never been inside, and I need to add it to my list of things to do while I live in DC!  I was really surprised how many people there were. I thought this race had less than 2,000 runners (compared the Cherry Blossom’s 12,000), but it seemed like a lot more!  But then who knows, I have zero guesstimation skills.  As a kid, I was always hundreds off in the “guess how many jelly beans” contests.  My fall 10-miler is supposed to have 30,000 – I can’t even imagine!

The race course was all along a pretty tree-lined commuter road. It was weird to have so many less spectators cheering us on (as very few parts of the course were residential or even accessible), but that made me appreciate them that much more near the finish line!

My friend Jenny ran with me the whole time!  We had really pushed ourselves in the Cherry Blossom race, and decided to take this one easier. Besides, this one had hills, and we weren’t really sure what to expect.

We made great time for the first 3 miles!  Then I started needing frequent walk breaks because I ate an absurd amount of food the night before. I felt so nauseous that I was afraid to take my gu, even when I felt like I needed it. I had a few sips of the race-provided powerade instead. I survived my longest gu-less run!

We finished in 2:07 – only 4 minutes slower than my Cherry Blossom time!  (Though I had a quick potty break in the CB but none here.)  Here are our splits:

Mile 1 – 11:19
Mile 2 – 11:55
Mile 3 – 12:04
Mile 4 – 12:48
Mile 5 – 12:06
Mile 6 – 12:35
Mile 7 – 13:59
Mile 8 – 14:07
Mile 9 – 13:34
Mile 10 – 12:27
10 – 10.07 – 9:12

After the race, we got some bagels & our bags, and hung out until Jenny’s fiancé got there. I briefly met a friend from SparkPeople for the first time too!

This race was a wake-up call for my half marathon in 2.5 weeks!

Lessons learned:

1.)    Eat lightly & healthfully the day before!

2.)    Even if it’s rainy and you’re cranky, you will be SO GLAD that you got up and ran!

3.)    Running with other people is fun and I need to stop being so scared of it 🙂


One Response to “Race Report: George Washington Parkway Classic 10 Mile Run”

  1. Johanna B Says:

    I love reading race recaps. I’m looking forward to getting back into doing races. I used to do the Crescent City Classic in New Orleans every year. It’s a 10K and I loved it. Now to find races around Topeka.

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