Spring Thaw 10 Mile Race

Wells is 21 weeks old (as of yesterday)!

Always reaching the hand to the mouth. I think teething has begun...

Always reaching the hand to the mouth. I think teething has begun…

We are having some fun exercising together. (I also bench press Currie but Wells isn’t old enough to take pictures of that…)

He's 18lbs and a perfect Russian Twist partner!

He’s 18lbs and a perfect Russian Twist partner!

I ran a 10 mile race today and hit the exact pace I hoped for, 6:20 per mile! See the official stats below:

Took this pic after the race while waiting for awards. Pretty cool that they have computers showing real time results just waiting for the runners near the finish line!

Took this pic after the race while waiting for awards. Pretty cool that they have computers showing real time results just waiting for the runners near the finish line!

After so many frigid, icy, snowy runs (and more treadmill miles than I’ve ever logged) as I try to get in shape after having Wells, it felt good to run on a sunny, 45 degree morning. The wind was a bit intense, knocking Jeff’s baseball hat right off his head as we walked to the start line, but I can’t complain about this beautiful racing weather!

I have to start out by thanking my in-laws for making the drive to watch the kids so Jeff and I could both race. I also want to thank Mark and Kristy for being so helpful to me regarding everything “Pittsburgh racing” and inviting me to group runs every weekend even though I can rarely meet up!

The race was called Spring Thaw and after my first time running it, I’m already a huge fan and plan to run it every year. You pay one price for 10, 15 or 20 miles of racing and you can decide what event to finish at any point. It’s a 5 mile loop course and all runners are scored at the 10 mile point and then overall awards are given for those who complete the 20 miler as well. All entrants get a stocking cap, the 15 milers get a pair of gloves, and then 20 milers get gloves and a neck gaiter. The race is well supported with water and gatorade every mile, gels every 5 miles. I was a little intimidated when I arrived and saw the finish line area, wondering if it would tempt me to stop each time I passed the “Finish vs. Additional loops” signs, but the signs were down for the race part and I didn’t want to stop after 10 miles anyway! (I was just informed that the signs weren’t taken down, they fell down and injured several runners. I hope everyone is ok!)

Finish vs Additional Loops

Finish vs Additional Loops

I planned to run the first 10 miles as a race, then jog another 5 miles to get 15 for the day. For various reasons I only warmed up approximately 1/4 mile… and didn’t even end up doing strides beforehand! It worked in my favor because I started on the slower end of my goal pace, and ran about a 6:42 first mile. The rest of my miles ranged from 6:30s to 6:00, depending on wind direction and the rolling hills.

The first 5 miles felt very comfortable and conversational. I lined up behind, and had my eye on Ivan from the beginning because I knew he was running the race as a workout and his goal pace was close to mine. I wanted to hang onto him as long as possible. I tried to draft off of him and some other guys but I’m horrible at drafting and ended up kicking him not once, but TWICE! Geesh! I decided I need to branch off and stop annoying the group of guys so I passed them around mile 3-4 and looked to catch another group. I caught people here and there, but never found any groups. I ended up running most of the race by myself.

Mile 6 was the first time I felt like my breathing was “race appropriate”. The first 5 miles felt more tempo-ish than race pace. I never hit a point where I really wanted the race to end (until mile 13, 3 miles into my cooldown) so that was exciting and also makes me think I should have gone a bit faster at some point during the race. As I said before, I passed a few runners and only got passed by one person during the 10 mile portion. Once I dropped down to 7:30ish pace for the 5 mile cooldown I was passed by quite a few dudes (between 5-10) and one lady.

While I always WANT to be faster, I’m content with today’s race. I don’t have my sense of pacing back yet and feel I’m either going to start off too hard and die or start off too easy and feel I had something left to give at the end. As I get in better shape, I will find my sweet spot with racing and pacing again but for now, I have to be happy with hitting my time goal! My racing season is just beginning and I’m getting excited about the rest of it!

Here are the 21 week postpartum pics!

21 weeks postpartum!

21 weeks postpartum!

 Hope you are having a wonderful weekend of running, racing, or relaxing!



8 thoughts on “Spring Thaw 10 Mile Race

  1. I am so happy this went well for you Jen. It’s always such a nice feeling to be able to pick up the pace versus dying. (at least in my opinion haha). I have full confidence for your races in the spring. Also Russian twist partner win? I nearly die at 10 pounds, I cannot even imagine 18.

    Safe travels today!

  2. First off, how cute is that pic of you and Wells?!?!? Currie is a good photographer.

    Secondly, THANK YOU for being so awesome, and running my slow pace with me. We need to do it again soon.

    And lastly, I’m so happy and excited for you, for winning the Spring Thaw! That is a big race too, you should be very proud. Also, congrats to Jeff on his results! I didn’t realize he was so speedy too! You guys must do the Just a Short Run next month, it’s put on by the same people, Elite Runners and Walkers. (5K, 8K, HM, 30K).

  3. Yay for an awesome race, someone is coming back fierce 😉

    Glad you are enjoy PGH too and have people ‘showing you the ropes’, also love the workouts with the kiddos. Such an inspiration, but for now I’ll stick with medballs for my russian twists- maybe I’ll borrow my nephew for them one day :)

    I really like the concept of that race, hmmm now I need to bug some people in Rochester to make this happen.

  4. Great job at Spring Thaw! I was kind of disappointed to see that we “held you back” for the first 3 miles. Hope the controlled start made your race more enjoyable than an average 10 miler. What’s your next race? Just a Short Run, as mentioned above, is a big and fun event.

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