2015 Worcester Jingle 5k {Race Recap}

Hey friends…I’m back with my 3rd race recap of 2015!  It’s kind of funny to me that I didn’t race all year and then since September I have run 3 races!  I guess like everything, racing ebbs and flows for me.

Anyways, I was signed up to run the 2015 Worcester Jingle 5k road race last weekend with my friends Michele and Amy. We all ran the race last year and it happened to be my 5k PR race (22:17) so I kinda felt like I should run it again this year. I had picked up my race packet on Saturday morning after Ashton’s soccer practice so I was ready to go.

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I felt pretty terrible all day and ended up taking a nap (something I NEVER do) and later in the afternoon I had texted the girls that I had a migraine all day and was unsure about how I would be feeling the next morning for the race but I would let them know as soon as I woke up on Sunday.

Well, I woke up on Sunday with a low grade headache and when I went to check my phone, Amy wasn’t feeling well and wasn’t going to run, so I felt bad that Michele would have been all alone so I took some pain meds, ate some breakfast and sucked it up and went to the race.

I was glad to see that when I got to the race, Michele talked Jay into running with her (and their crazy dog Chloe) so she wouldn’t be alone running.

michele and jay

Aren’t they adorable all dressed up? Even though I don’t dress up for races (it’s just not my thing), I loved seeing everyone in their festive holiday outfits.  There were tons of Santa hats, Christmas pajamas, candy cane striped socks and tights. There was even someone who ran the entire race as a gingerbread man–that is some serious dedication!

We have been having unseasonably warm temps here in MA, like in the 50-60’s which is CRAZY for the end of December, but of course on the day of the race it was SO freaking cold (low 30’s and WINDY) I ended up wearing 3 layers, my hat and gloves and while I was a bit nervous I would be too hot once we got going (like my recent Turkey Trot), the wind was whipping around and kind of brutal, so I am happy to say that I was perfectly dressed–which rarely ever happens to me!

Michele and I took a quick picture and then I jumped into the corral with a few minutes to spare, turned on my Garmin and music and waited for the gun to go off.

michelle and i

I had absolutely no expectations for this race given how I had been feeling.  I was bummed because I would have loved to try and get close to my time from last year, but I knew that wasn’t in the cards for me that morning.  So, once I made it through the first mile of crowds, I settled into a comfortable pace and enjoyed my playlist.  I will say the course leaves a lot to be desired, it is really a terrible and un-scenic (did I just make that word up?) so I kind of just zoned out. I didn’t even look at my Garmin until I hit stop as I crossed the finish line.  I ended up coming in at 24:05 according to my watch and was just under the 5k distance, which means I ran the tangents well,which is something I have been really trying to do better at races.

me

The final race results came in and they had me at 24:03 (7:44 per mile) and 97th finisher out of 699 runners.

race results

Even though I didn’t PR, I’m still really glad that I got out there and ran and I am beyond happy with the time given how I had been feeling! I was totally not expecting to be anywhere near this time. I think there is something to be said about running by feel too, I always do way better when I run by feel vs. by constantly looking at my Garmin…anyone know why that is??? 

And finally..because I cannot take a good race pic for the life of me..here are some for some laughs!

Jingle 5k (2)

 

Jingle 5k (1)

HA! At least I can laugh at myself, right? 🙂 That’s it folks, my 2015 Worcester Jingle 5k race recap! Let’s see if I run more than 3 races in 2016!

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Question of the day

Who has raced recently? How did it go? Pointers on how to take a good race pic?

Holden Road Race 2015 {Race Recap}

Hi guys, long time no talk!  I know, I know…more on that in a later post!  Anyways, let’s talk about something fun today shall we??  I FINALLY ran my first Turkey Trot–and I kinda loved it!  I was supposed to run the Holden Road Race last Thanksgiving but it ended up snowing pretty bad and I didn’t feel safe driving out to the race so I ended up working out at home.  This year was a different story.

I signed up really late on a whim since I had been pretty sick for the past week but I was starting to feel a bit better and thought, why not.  Then, I immediately sent a text to my friend Michelle (the awesome photographer who took Ashton’s recent pics) and asked her if she wanted to join me. You know you have awesome runner friends when they immediately respond in less than a minute with a yes!

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I was on vacation the week of Thanksgiving so that Tuesday I went to our local running store to pick up my race packet, and as usual, this store has their system down to a science and I was in and out in less than 5 minutes with my bib and a few coupons that I will definitely put to good use over the next few weeks!

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I laid my clothes out on Wednesday night so when my alarm went off, I could quickly get dressed, brush my teeth, wash my face, grab a drink of water and get out the door.  I don’t like having to wake up early on my days off, but for running, I will!

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It was COLD when I left, in the 20’s (when did I become such a baby with the cold weather running?), but I bundled up and brought an extra layer just in case and headed to pick up Michelle. I got to her house by 6:50ish and we pulled into the race parking lot just after 7 am so she could register and we got our race shirts. We also took the obligatory selfie to send to our husbands.

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We had to wait around for a bit before the race got started so we warmed up a bit, and found another place to have our pic taken!

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I think you can tell by the look on my face that I was cold, even while bundled up!!  HA!  I contemplated putting on another layer but thankfully decided against it!

We started to line up with 1500 of our closest friends (I was surprised at how big the race actually was!)IMG_7633

Once the gun went off, we started towards the balloons and I started my Garmin.  As usual, there was a huge bottleneck for the first 1/2 mile.  That was fine by me as I was not trying to PR this race. I have been spending the last few months focusing on strength and not so much running, so my goal was to average anywhere in the 8’s and I would be happy.  I quickly found a pace that felt comfortable for me and while there were still a lot of people around, the crowds thinned out more by the mile mark and I hit my groove.

The course went through some beautiful neighborhoods and I loved that there were a lot of spectators and the people who lived in the houses came out to cheer us on. I gave a few young kids high fives and was really enjoying myself.  At the halfway mark I realized I was started to get really hot and was asking myself why I was wearing so many clothes (why do I ALWAYS do this??)  I unzipped my jacket and turned my music up hoping that would distract me…if that didn’t work, the hills sure would!  I also didn’t realized when I signed up how hilly this course way! Eek!

I kinda zoned out because before I knew it, I looked down at my watch for the first time since we started and we were hitting 2.5 miles and I knew I was close to being done.  Then I turned a corner and what I didn’t know was that the finish was all up hill, and not a gradual hill but a “holy shit you have to be kidding me” hill!  I could immediately feel myself slow down and my breathing and chest started to burn. I just kept telling myself over and over, one step in front of the other and that I could slow down as much as I needed to but I was NOT to stop.  So, I slowed down A LOT.  That climb was brutal and then I saw the finish line and gave it everything I had!  I crossed the finish line, stopped my Garmin and went into a coughing fit (awesome, right?!)

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This was followed by shock.  I had only looked at my watch once during the race and didn’t look at my time, rather just the distance so I had no idea I was going that fast.  I was running a pace that felt really comfortable to me, which I assumed was in the high 8’s.  I was really happy with an overall pace of 8:05!  When the race results came out, I realized, it was actually an 8:00 pace, which was even more surprising!

race results

Not a PR for me, but I was more than happy with my time.  After I finished coughing, I walked over, grabbed a bottle of water and walked over to the finish to wait for Michelle.

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This is when I started to freeze again.   I couldn’t find Michelle anywhere, then she texted me that she was over by the bananas! I must have missed her when I went to grab my water since there were so many people hanging out in that area.  I walked over to  meet her and she grabbed a bagel and I grabbed a hot chocolate and then we decided to head back to the car to warm up and get home.

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I went into Michelle’s house for a few minutes to see some of the redesign work they were doing in their house, chatted with her and Jay then headed home.  I was still freezing and on the chance that Starbuck’s was open on Thanksgiving, I swung by one that was on my way home.  Thankfully, it was open. I grabbed a skinny peppermint decaf mocha and headed home to my boys and my Mom where we enjoyed an awesome Thanksgiving together.

Well, that’s it friends, my Holden Road Race 2015 race recap.  This was my second race of the year and I am signed up with Michelle to do one more Jingle 5k late in December (the same one we did together last year,) so that will be it for my races this year.  I did sign up for a race I have been DYING to do in 2016..but more on that in a later post!

Have a great weekend, be safe, have fun and get your sweat on!

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Question of the day

Anyone else run a Turkey Trot this year?  How are you all doing?? Tell me something good going on in your life!