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Malachi 5 Miler

This might go down as the coldest race I have ever ran. Not only was it cold but it was windy too. At least once a year I say “I feel stupid for running in this” and this year, this race was it.

So why run this race in the first place? Well, it’s the only race I have not missed since I started running. 9 years in a row I have showed up to this race so I couldn’t stop now. Even if I couldn’t feel most of my body.

Instead of my normal 1.5 mile warm up, I did 2 miles because it was so cold. You know how most of the time you start running, warm up and are fine. Well after a 2 mile warm up, I was still freezing and even with hand warmers I couldn’t feel my hands.

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Staying warm in the car.

I was excited for the race to start so that I could run and get back to the car and turn the heat on. When the race started I went out at a comfortable pace. My goal was to have some energy at the end and avoid having dead legs. I did a pretty good job, despite being cold and wanting to go faster. I ended up running 7:43 for the first mile. I tried to pick it up a little bit for the second mile because I was feeling good and ran the second mile in 7:33.

At around mile 2.5, I was finally warm enough to feel body parts again. My quads were so cold they were very heavy. It was an odd feeling to have legs that were so dead from the cold. I ran the 3rd mile in 7:43 but then struggled big time with the 4th mile and ran 8:23. Eek!

I ended up finishing with a time of 38:53. I was hoping to go sub 37. With injuries and being sick I had missed some workouts so I thought a 37 sounded reasonable for the first race of the season. Apparently, I have some work to do…

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Excuse the finger in this photo
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Bay Days 5 Miler 2016

Every year the Bay Days 5 miler is on the 4th of July so every year there is the fear that it will be 100 degrees. For years, I avoided this race for that very reason. However, the past couple years I have been running it and we have had surprisingly good weather. This year included.

Last year, the day before this race I biked for 5 hours because I was Ironman training. This year I decided to run 20 miles 2 days before. Not exactly the best decision but I don’t normally run well at Bay Days so I figured it wouldn’t matter.

Bay Days Elevation

The Bay Days course is fairly flat but the beginning of the race is slightly downhill so it is really hard to not go out too fast. Which I always love to do. This race was slightly different in that I actually didn’t go out as fast. The first mile marker was a little long but my watch had me at 7:05 mile for the first mile.

The pace felt difficult but my legs didn’t feel heavy so I was hoping I could hold on to the 7:05 pace. I thought for sure that I was running slower but I looked down and by mile 2 I was at a 7:13 pace. So I was running slower but not by too much.

I normally race with headphones but lately I have been getting away from that. For running by myself it is nice to pass the time but when I am racing I always wear them to keep my nerves down and to keep me focused. However, at mile 3 I didn’t even notice that I didn’t have my head phones! I hit mile 3 at 7:19 pace and that wasn’t too far off from the 7:11 pace I was aiming for.

I tried to pick up the pace for the last 2 miles. Nothing major just was hoping to take off a couple seconds and maybe get closer to my goal finish time. I haven’t felt 100% this summer for races so it wasn’t the end of the world if I didn’t hit my goal time. I hit mile 4 at 7:16.

During the last mile, I got passed by a man pushing a stroller but not any stroller. A DOUBLE STROLLER. Like seriously? Who is THAT bad ass? Running in the low 7s while pushing 2 children.

So obviously my goal was to stay as close to Double Stroller Man as possible for the rest of the race. He took off and while it helped my pace, I wouldn’t say I “kept up” with him. I don’t even remember seeing him at the finish.

BayDays Finish

I ended up running that last mile in 7:13 for a finish time of 36:07 a 7:14 pace. SO CLOSE TO MY GOAL TIME! Ahhhh. It wouldn’t have been a PR but just a time I thought I could come close to running but it was just out of my reach. It was a nice way to push myself though. I ended up coming in 4th in my age group which was totally fine with all the competition there and I would rather run a good time than place in my age group. This is also about a minute faster than what I ran at Bay Days last year.

 

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Malachi 5 Miler 2015

Finally, the blizzards have stopped and the roads were unfrozen and I was able to get out for a road race in Cleveland. Just in time for the Malachi 5 Miler. I think I have been participating in this race since 2007 or 2008 so it’s nice to keep the tradition going.

Ryan and I pre-race
Ryan and I pre-race

My training had been going really well so I set a lofty goal to run anything in the 35s for this race. I had calculated the paces and was that I could achieve that goal.

The race started and I did really good at  holding a perfect 7 minute pace. There is some downhill during the first mile that definitely helps. After the first mile I felt really good going into the second mile running another 7 minute pace. However, around mile 2.5 I started to zone out and lost my pace. I should have had someone meet me at mile 3 to pace me the rest of the way but I didn’t think of that until I was at mile 3.

At mile 3.5 I started to pick it back up to a 7:15 pace but couldn’t quit get down to the 7 minute pace I was aiming for. With 2 up hills on the second half of the course, it’s hard to pick up the pace. At the top of the last hill I started to really leg my legs go and barrel down the hill. I don’t normally take the downhills too hard because it wrecks my quads but I was trying to cut some time off my race and get as close to “something in the 35s” as I could.

Heel striking down the bridge
Heel striking down the bridge

As I turned the last corner and neared the finish line, I saw that I did not make it into the 35s, I instead ran a 37:01 a 7:24 pace.I was definitely disappointed in my time but it was faster than last years time. I was also 6th in my age group which is pretty good for me considering there are well over 200 women in my age group.

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Run for Justice 5 Miler

After being sick for the 10K last week, I was excited to run this weekend. 2 years ago this race was on my Birthday and I PR’d so it’s always been a favorite race of mine ever since.

You have the option to run a 5K or 5 mile distance for this race. Last year I was coming back from injury so I only ran the 5K but remember it being really windy. This year I decided to run the 5 mile and was hoping for no wind.

Bodhi wouldn’t let me take a picture of the race shirt sorry.

Race Shirt
Race Shirt

This year it might have been more windy than last year.

Mile 1: 7:07–  The 5K and 5 mile all start at the same time so it was hard to not go out too fast. However, I ran the first mile or so with a woman who run this race every year and she kept me at a good pace. She even forgave me when the windy blew me into her!

Mile 2: 7:23 – This mile goes down and around the Browns stadium so it can be a tough mile. Shortly after I started to see the top guys on the way back. I saw Ryan and his face said it all, he was running into the wind. I knew the turnaround was up ahead so I wasn’t just waiting to hit the wind.

Mile 3: 7:20 – As soon as I made the turn at 2.5 I could feel the wind. Sadly, it’s a long straightaway and no way to get around it. I tried my best to not think about it and keep running hard.

Mile 4: 8:00 – Wind all over the place for this mile. I felt like I was lifting weights my quads were so tired. I was running uphill into the wind and just begging myself to keep pushing.

Mile 5: 8:00 – Almost entirely on a straightaway however, certain parts had no wind, some had windy coming from your side and if you were lucky you got a couple burst of wind at your back.

Finished in 38:04, 7:37 pace and 5th overall (I actually thought I was in 4th but I missed a girl because she was wearing a hat). I thought I might cut it close and barely miss placing in my age group but I ended up with 2nd!

Age group medal
Age group medal

1.5 mile warm up+5 mile run+3 mile cooldown+4.5 miles to finish long run = 14 miles for the day.