run pretty run fast

a blog about running fast with style

My very first 10 mile race (sort-of): Fort Steilacoom Resolution Series

Saturday January 26th

First things first, I had no intention of really racing this 10 miler.  I knew it had been a hard week of training with the 400m repeats and the original plan was to tempo 10 at close to marathon goal pace (6:48).  But let’s also be honest though I know myself (just a little bit) and I knew if the pace felt good I wouldn’t be able to just tempo the whole thing especially the second half.  So my plan was to stick to 6:48s for the first 5-7 and then pick-up the pace.

Not going to lie I was nervous since my longest tempo was only 6 but got start somewhere right?

Since I was too nervous to remember to take any pictures and I lost my phone 3 or 4 (or 8) times at the race here’s a video for the Fort Steilacoom Club’s website if you want to see what the race looked like:

(Um yep it’s from last year I’m not in the video)

The race starts on the track and then runs up a hill.  It’s a pretty simple out and back.  We lined-up with a minute to go and before I knew it we were off.

I like starting on the track but you (and my you I mean me) always run too fast even with the hill after the first 200m.  My first mile was fast: maybe.  My Garmin had me at 6:24 and the course had me at 6:35.  So let’s go with the course since Garmin tends to struggle with hills and ovals.  (It’s okay Garmin)

I was feeling pretty good so I just tried to settle in.  I was a bit concerned I was running too fast since one of the gals I used to run with was running also and she was aiming for 6:30s and we seemed to be running even so I tried and tried to settle in (again).  I’d love to tell you what my splits were but you know Garmin was having a bit of an off day.

I can tell you I felt okay through 3 and was glad the 10k-ers split at about this point but it also left me in no mans land.  I struggled with mile 4 and it was downhill (what gives with that?).  It almost broke me.  I told myself to make it one more mile and then I was on the home stretch (right?).

My watch seemed to have sorted it self out at the turnaround chiming right at 5 miles.  I made the tight turn and was ready to run.  I realized I’d picked it up on mile 5 so I tried to maintain my pace on 6.  By this point I’d caught a guy in front of me (who by the way had a head on collision with another one of my friends on the blind corner while she was heading out to the turn around- don’t worry she’s okay) and he told me we could take the next 4 miles after of course telling me he hoped my friend was okay (he didn’t know we were friends and I certainly hope we can finish these next 4).

My new running bestie ended up being quite the talker and he wanted me to catch the gal in front of me (she was the third place female) and he may have wanted me to catch her more than I wanted to.

I’m not going to lie (obviously) I wasn’t super motivated to catch her which is a bit uncharacteristic for me but I just didn’t have any fight even with my new besites encouragement.

I opted to hold my pace which meant I passed the guy and then caught the gal on the hill.  Right when I caught up to her she surged and I didn’t go with her.  I was just trying to hold my pace and she was just trying to hold her place.

The last three miles were long but my new bestie encouraged me the whole way (maybe a little too much).  I kept trying to find some turnover and I did but I was still hoping for a bit more.  I could still see number 3 ahead of me but couldn’t close and my bestie passed me.  I’m not sure if I didn’t have the strength or fight but whatever it was it wasn’t there.

The last mile had some nice twists and turns and before I knew it I was on the track with not much turnover.  My hamstrings were starting to feel fatigued and I just didn’t feel like finding that next level of pain and for January I’m okay with it.

It didn’t help that my Garmin was off for the last 5 miles and I was uncertain about my pace.  Turns out it was a bit faster than I thought.  I finished in 65:32 and negative split the second half by just over a minute and I won my age group and was the 4th female!  Woot!  Woot!  What a day.  6:33s for 10 miles is a big breakthrough for me.


Overall I really pleased and surprised to be running this fast with just a month of real training (first workout post CIM was on Christmas day).  There’s also a part of me that’s a bit worried I’m running a little too fast a little too early, end of May seems a long ways a way…

There are a few things I’d like to improve:  fueling and hydration (struggled with both) and finding that racing spirit (was a bit disappointed it didn’t show-up but it’s got to still be there right?).

Post race recovery was epic but I think I still prefer an IPA with some fish and chips (and maybe a few more bottles of Nuun).



We all know I’m bad at conclusions so…

run pretty run fast


4 comments on “My very first 10 mile race (sort-of): Fort Steilacoom Resolution Series

  1. Jesse - Questionably Texan
    February 21, 2013

    That’s a very impressive time!
    Nobody ever talks to me during a race. Not sure how well I’d deal with someone that “encouraging” next to me!

    • robyn
      February 26, 2013

      Thank you! It was a good race for me! Yeah… it was okay at first and then it sort of go on my last nerve… I felt like if he could talk he should just pass me and well he finally did!

  2. Susan - Nurse on the Run
    February 23, 2013

    Whenever someone tells me to catch the person in front of me, I give them a dirty look that says, “Why don’t YOU catch the person in front of me? I’m just fine here.” Coaches never liked me much.

    Speedy speedy ten miler, congrats!

  3. robyn
    February 26, 2013

    NURSE! I miss you.

    I clearly need to work on my dirty look. I know I was thinking the same thing and he actually made me not want to pass the girl…

    If I was you coach I would have like you.

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This entry was posted on February 20, 2013 by in races and tagged , , , , , , , .
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