I’m really grateful that I got a chance to preview the course with our training group with guest coach Lauren who was one of my coaches for the Baltimore Women’s Classic 5k a few weeks before the actual race.
The hardest part of this race is a slow uphill between miles 5 and 6.2 before the race gets flat again. Because of the preview run, we got a chance to experience this for the first time before the race giving us something to expect and a gentle reminder to leave some gas in the tank for that last part
For the most part things went well. I visualized the course beforehand and the night before I ran. I knew what to expect. I also got an unexpected really nice pump-up message from my supervisor at work this morning which was a great way to start the day.
The race in a nutshell. I tried purposefully not to go out too fast. I started Runkeeper a little early (before I crossed the finish line) to make sure it was working. I knew that the first part of the course was downhill until we got to Key highway, then it flattened out until Pratt street where it was a gradual uphill until we turned on Wolfe. The course was pretty flat when I got onto the promenade and then ran up the hill by the Science Center past the American Visionary Arts Museum on Covington street, the dreaded last hill. Most of the people in the back of the pack where I was were walking. I was determined to keep running. Once I got to Fort Avenue I started pushing it until I saw the finish line where I pushed it even further.
I ended up with a personal best, with a 20 second difference in pace from the official race timing.
Overall I am quite happy with the result.
Running with my BF and training partner, and my Baltimore Bestie, Anna.
Being dressed smartly. It was warmer than any of our training runs and I was very thankful for wearing a short sleeved tee and shorts.
Knowing the course and where to hold off and where to push forward.
Being aware of people running the race on intervals, and to hear the beeps from their watches, and staying away from them
Feeling confident in my training and info from my coach, Meredith. She did a great job and was always able to answer our questions and personalize the training. She was also great fetching me when the other runners returned.
The unexpected/not so good:
I saw at least 5 people fall. I have so far never experienced that in a race. I also saw people being attended to by medical personnel, which I had not yet experienced.
The Heat. I wasn’t expecting it to be so hot. I’m glad I stopped for water at both stops (not generally something I do during a shorter race).
Goals for the next time:
I’d love to get my race pace down even further and aim for more personal bests. I’m glad I was able to complete the 10k and make so much progress since I started running a year ago