Tag Archives: St. Patrick’s Day 8K

St Patrick’s Day 8K Recap / Review

Woohoo racing season is upon us!!! The St. Patrick’s Day 8K has now kicked off my spring racing season for the past three years. It’s a fun race (great excuse to wear green) and 8K is such a manageable distance to wade into the season. However, I’ve never actually “raced” this race before. For whatever reason, there’s always something that makes me do this race “just for fun” and take it really really easy. In some ways I like that about it. Keep this fun race… well… fun! But this is really the only 8K I ever run, so my 8K “PR” is really out of whack for my other race times. But that’s ok 🙂 This year was no exception…

Mike and I met up with my friend Sarah at about 8:30 am (the race started at 9 – major plus of this fun race… doesn’t start too early!). For the second time with this race, I’ve almost overslept / missed it because of daylight savings time. Will I ever learn? Everyone was decked out in their green and fun gear. I always end up wishing I actually took the time to go buy something fun to wear but alas my go to green / white striped arm sleeves will have to do.

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We lined up at the balloon arch and before we knew it we were off! Mike went ahead of us and Sarah and I stuck together. Mike has been having major IT band issues, Sarah hasn’t been training much, and I was having some weird ankle pain so needless to say all of us were a little down for the count on this race.

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I love the scenery in this race though. It was super sunny or else I would’ve had a PERFECT picture running down Pennsylvania towards the Capitol building. Alas, the sun was too bright so I settled for a distant pic of the Washington Monument. Nothing like a clear DC morning 🙂

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Sarah and I stuck together through the majority of the race (4 miles out of 4.98) I haven’t really mastered the art of the self portrait while running. Or really pictures while running I just kind of snap at random and hope for the best.

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As we rounded the corner to head back towards the finish line, I was able to snap a decent picture of the Capitol building. My composition could use work but that’s ok 🙂 We caught a glimpse of Mike during on the of the out / back sections and he seemed to be doing pretty well. I was super nervous about his knee injury (his complete refusal to wear green to this race ended up making him SUPER easy to find). I left Sarah at mile 4 and took off for the finish line. I had been keeping a very easy pace so I wanted to really push the last mile just for good measure 😉

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As I turned into the final out / back section of the race right before the final stretch of Pennsylvania Ave to the finish line, I saw Mike again. This time he was walking so I knew he wasn’t doing well. Mike is a huge competitor. There is no way he would walk at all (let alone this close to the finish line) unless he was really hurting. I ran harder to catch up with him. I caught him literally a minute before finishing, and made him try to run it in with me. He ended up finishing a few steps behind me and was definitely in a lot of pain… poor guy!

My “official” time was 53:09 which is totally fine by me 🙂 I just love to race, so I definitely don’t make each one a “have to push it to the max” mentality. Eventually the stars will align though and I will actually race an 8K just to see what I am capable of! The spring racing season is officially open and I can’t wait for what this year is going to bring 😀

I was super proud of Sarah for pushing it out on this race and reignited her running flame a bit. I’m so glad I was able to be with her during the race!! I don’t have many friends who run / race so it’s so much when I have a buddy.

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My armpit sweat is clearly why I never race in cotton shirts, but it was the only clean green shirt I could find!! I turned my arm warming into leg sleeves for a little variety which was definitely fun. There’s Mike in his non-St.Patty’s day gear.

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Quick Race Review! The wonderful folks at Pacers put on this event, and I have expressed my love my pacers in the past. I think they are a great local group that puts on very well organized races. They even upped their game this year with the race shirt (used to be a cotton t-shirt, now its a technical blend t-shirt. Definite improvement). Packet pick up is always exceptionally easy at their stores and this year it happened to coincide with a huge sale (which I totally scored BIG on). Water stops were well stocked, course well marked, and there were plenty of bathrooms. These are very important for a good race 🙂

After we finished they were handing out bottles of water, which was awesome. My one complaint was the lines were RIDICULOUS for the food tent. I didn’t even bother because I wasn’t hungry but I was slightly bummed to not even have a chance to grab a banana or granola bar for later. What was up with these lines??? (in the pic below… we were at the end of the line and the food was in the white tent WAY down the street… definitely did not wait in that line)

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My favorite part was the Irish dancers by the bag check (which was very smooth as always). I studied abroad in Ireland so I have a soft spot for Irish folk music and dancing 🙂

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Questions for You Guys:

– Have you ever run at St. Patty’s Day race before?? What did you wear??

– Do you always “race” or do you ever go out just for fun to take it easy? Have you ever raced injured?

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How do you write a running blog… when you’re not running?

I suppose I should rephrase that title. I’ve been running… some. But I haven’t been training… at all. The last couple weeks I’ve been feeling so great about my workouts. I’ve been enjoying them and pushing myself in new ways… making some really fun gains in the area of strength. But I haven’t been training. And I’m running a half marathon in two weeks!

You may recall that I was supposed to run the marathon but elected to drop down to the half when my knee injury started acting up halfway through training. I decided, at the time, it was best for my body to back off training. Apparently, I took that to mean I should stop training all together! I also didn’t have much to write about besides some fun treadmill speed sessions. There’s nothing particularly interesting about my 3 mile warm up to a strength training session or an easy 5 miler while watching the news. Hence… we haven’t been talking a lot of of running on Pennies ON THE RUN.

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I’m really glad I’ve given myself this break from training, because I have honestly enjoyed it. And my knee really wasn’t feeling great (I wouldn’t say its 100% now, but it’s MUCH better). AND honestly, I’m so over the cold right now. I’ve reached that point in the winter where I am like EFF THIS. My body doesn’t react well in extreme cold. I did a 10 miler on Saturday when it was 27 degrees out and my paced dropped steadily about 10 seconds every mile as I felt my body just tighten and tighten up under me. GIVE ME WARM WEATHER OR GIVE ME DEATH! (I’m completely aware that once DC’s swamp-like summer sets in I will be whining about that too)

But it’s MARCH now. Which means it’s almost Spring and its RACING SEASON. Nothing makes me want to run more than racing… I just love it. I’m opening my spring season this Sunday at the St. Patrick’s Day 8K and I’m really excited! Since I’m not really trained for the half, I’m definitely going to just take it easy and enjoy it. I put together this workout plan just to get me through the next two weeks / let me finish the half without hurting myself:

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
5M Steady State Spinning + Strength w/ Trainer Boot Camp + 30 minutes Speed Work 3M Steady + Strength Yoga + 3M easy 10 M St. Patrick’s Day 8K
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
5M Steady State Spinning + Strength w/ Trainer Boot Camp + 30 minutes Speed Work 3M Steady + Strength Yoga + 2M easy Rock’n’Roll USA Half Marathon Rest