Silks & Satins 5K Race Recap

July 22, 2017

When I first started running, this race was one of my favorite 5ks. I ran it in 2008, 2009, 2010.

in 2008 – my first year of running

in 2010, this is where I met AJH for the first time (I was wearing shorts back then.)

It’s funny how things have changed. AJH was trying to convince me to run a longer race. Since then I have completed 26 half marathons.

My 5k time back in 2010 was 29:34.

After 5 years, I ran this 5k again in 2015. And my time was 28:41. So things haven’t changed that much (but now I wear running skirts instead of shorts).

I’ve enjoyed this race so much that I have re-added to my summer racing list.

28:27 finish, a course PR and a 3rd place AG award in 2016

The course had changed for 2015 and I assumed that it would be the same again this year.

Here is the current course map:

15 turns in this course!!

The race started at 8 am. That meant that I had to get up at 5:30.

This being the opening weekend of the Saratoga Flat Track, believe it or not there was already a lot of traffic at 7 am. I was glad to have left early and found parking in a nearby lot. (I was careful this year to park in the correct lot. Two years ago, I almost got towed.)

unisex tech shirt – too big, of course

I picked up my bib and shirt and then went back to my car and watched the horses work out for a bit.

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There were about 1000 runners at this race. So I bumped into quite a few familiar faces: Sue, my Shape half roommate, Laurie from the Turkey Trot group several years ago, Holly and Nancy from the Freihofer’s group, Patrick, the director for this race  and coach for my running groups, to name a few.

The weather was quite warm … over 70 at the start and HUMID. So not ideal running conditions but I wasn’t planning to PR anyway.

Soon we headed to the start. It wasn’t chip-timed so Holly, Nancy & I tried to get as close to the front as we could but not get in the way of the speedy runners.

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And so we were off.

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Nancy is super fast and Holly is fast as well.  I tried to keep Holly in my sight during the first mile but she kept getting further and further ahead.

It seemed like everyone was passing me by…because they were. But as usual, my first mile was too fast. My plan was to have negative splits and but that never happened.

By the second mile, I had completely lost Holly and I was starting to struggle with my breathing.

It was warm but I have run in higher temps.  It was the HUMIDITY.  And it was sucking the life out of me.  I don’t sweat much but I was dripping…

I tried to run in the shade when there was shade and run the tangents (all 15 of them). I only walked at the one water stop at the halfway point. And as it turned out, my legs were tired and I probably should have walked at each mile.

It was during mile 3 that I saw Holly again.  She had slowed down so much that I caught up to her.

She beat me during our last two races together and I tried to encourage her to run  faster but she replied “Go ahead, I’m done!!”  Her super speedy pace for the first two miles had killed her.

So I ran ahead and tried to get up enough energy to sprint through the finish line.

I crossed at 27:37 (Gun time).

It was actually over a minute faster than last year so I was thrilled. But boy, did I feel crappy – nauseous, dizzy.  I got some water and sat down until I felt human.

Then I searched for my friends and found them on the food line.  It was a long line but moved quickly.

Two years ago, the refreshments consisted of bagels & chocolate milk. This year like last year, there was only watermelon & bananas. I had at least four pieces of watermelon, a banana and a granola bar.  And I felt much better.

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watermelon on a hot day – yum!

They posted the results pretty quickly. I was shocked that I again came in third in my age group. (Unfortunately, Holly was 5th.)


While waiting for the awards ceremony, I bumped into more runners that I knew and they all got awards, as well.

I taught Michelle French 25 years ago!! She is super speedy – finished in 20 minutes at age 42.

I got a nice medal. It always feels great when you win an award.

All in all, this was a fun race. Besides all the turns, the race course is pretty flat.  It is well-organized. I plan to run this race again next summer.

Splits:

mile 1- 8:34
mile 2 – 8:56 (walk at the water stop)
mile 3 – 9:06
.1 – 7:26

27:35 (Garmin time)

I was not planning on going up to my friend’s at the Schroon River house until Sunday morning. So I took advantage of this opportunity to get some more miles in. I drove back to the Zim Smith Trail and ran in the opposite direction from last weekend.  It was warm, I was tired but I got it done.

 I survived the heat and drove home to get ready to go to a dinner party with some of the runners who will be racing the Wineglass Half Marathon on Oct. 1.

and if you are wondering, that is a Skirt Sports dress.

Racing, Running and talking about Running – what a great day!!

And since it is Thursday, I’m linking up today with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud Thursday.

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I decided not to run a race this weekend (I was tempted by one in Chestertown).  My next race will be a hilly one – Race the Train on Aug 4.  I will be meeting up with Sue (NYC roommate) and VT running pal, AJH so I plan to, as usual, have a great time.

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Happy Running! How is your running going? Any races? What are you thinking about today?

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TOLT: Skirt Sports

Since it is Thursday, I’m linking up today with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud Thursday.

thinking out loud

Here’s what I’m thinking about today:

Skirt Sports!!

You know that I almost exclusively wear their skirts in all seasons.

Well, there are exciting things happening this month.

  • #31DaysofSkirtSports Challenge

This challenge has been going on all month and it’s not too late to participate.  There’s a theme each day and you just post a photo to Instagram showing your interpretation.  It’s lots of fun to see what others post.

  • New Patterns

This is Romance but there is also Fly Away, Love Triangle and more to come.

It’s that time of year when the new skirt patterns for the Fall season arrive.  And I love them all and don’t know how long I can refrain from purchasing anything.

  • I am featured on the title page of the website!! Psyched to be chosen!!

So if you want to buy a new skirt, check out the Sale page or use this code for a 20% discount: FWC20

Happy Running!  Do you wear Skirt Sports?  What are you thinking about today?

 

Run for Help 5K Race Recap

June 11, 2017 – 10 am

I wasn’t as active in this spring’s STEM program as I would have liked (due to work commitments) but as I did last year, I decided to help the STEM runners and registered for this race.

There were a few races scheduled for this weekend (plus boating) that I would have liked to do but as soon as I arrived at the race, I knew that I had made the right decision.

Running is not all about PRs and finish times.  Sometimes you have to give back especially since running has given me so much.

Last year, we didn’t actually participate in the race. We ran along side our runner but never crossed the finish line.

This year, however, we did register and pay for the race. We would be running it in order to help a STEM participant achieve their goal.

Because I wasn’t planning to “race” the race, I ran 8 miles the day before.

I was glad too because race day was even hotter and more humid (and the race didn’t start until 10 am!!)

I arrived early to pick up my packet and meet up with all the other volunteers and runners. What is awesome is that in addition to the new STEM runners, many of the old ones continue to return for races. It’s a STEM reunion too.

I also ran this race in 2009. I am a sucker for “causes.” And this is just  as important or maybe more important than a medical one.

It started out 10 years ago as a race for “Liza” who had been killed by her abusive husband but it is now also dedicated to Nikki who suffered the same fate.

The race is very well organized and offers lots of raffle prizes and even…

Eventually  we went outside to take some group photos and then to pair up with a STEM runner. In my particular group, most of the STEM participants had dropped out and we had more volunteers than runners.

I got paired with our one ‘male” participant, Mike, who usually does his own thing in trainings (instead of Couch to 5k).  He said that he wanted to finish under 30 minutes.  I told him that I was there for  him if he needed help.

Soon we moved to the start line and got ready to begin.

As I mentioned, I was not planning to run fast.  And Mike just took off.  Well, it was hot so I just ran my own pace, stopped to tie my shoes and walked at all the water stops.  Luckily on this hot day, there were many (maybe 5 or 6).

The course starts out flat on a country road but when we turn left, there are rolling hills (2 steepish ones).  I didn’t wear my Garmin (because I wasn’t going to be racing) but I did my best to run slowly up the hills.  Everyone was sweating…even me.

What I love about this out and back course is that you get to see all the slower runners.  And in this case, all the purple shirts.  I high-fived them and screamed encouragement as I ran by.

Eventually, I caught up to Mike, he was walking.  He said he had a side cramp.  I walked with him and encouraged him to get some water and start running again.

And he did.  I ran ahead so I could cheer him through the finish line.

Yes, he did cross under 30 minutes!! We were both happy.

I remained at the finish line to watch all the other happy faces cross and get their medals.

hot hot hot

Then I took my sweaty body to my car so I could sneak out.  I didn’t even stay around for the awards.

this race was NOT about me anyway

My hubby was waiting for me at the lake but I felt happier (for these runners) than if I had run a PR.  (There will be more times to run a fast 5k.)

ahhhh!


Since it is Thursday, I’m linking up today with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud Thursday.

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Happy Running! Ever run a race for someone else besides yourself?

TOLT: My Favorite 5K

Since it is Thursday, I’m linking up today with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud Thursday.

thinking out loud

Here’s what I’m thinking about today:

My Favorite Local 5K

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This is an easy one for me. It’s the only race that I’ve run every year since I started running. This year will my 10th time!!!!

Here are some of the reasons why I love this race and why I run it every year:

  • It is ALL women – all ages – all sizes – veterans – newbies – elites – walkers
  • It is a real USATF race with elite runners in it. (Joan Benoit Samuelson runs it most years.)

  • It feels so good to be a part of all the excitement.

  • The results are printed in the local newspaper and even though I finish around 2000, I am happy if I finish in the top half.
  • I always meet someone I know and someone new. Last year, I even met the mayor.

  • Running it in 2008 made realize that I actually was a runner.
  • Being part of other runners’ first 5k in 2010 made me so proud.
  • 2011 was my FRW PR year. Maybe I’ll PR again?
  • Finishing it in 2012 (after serious ankle surgery) helped me believe that I could be a runner again.
  • I broke my foot at the beginning of the race in 2013 and still gutted out a finish under 30 minutes!
  • In 2014, I ran as part of a team to raise money for a former student who was diagnosed with breast cancer. It made the race even more meaningful.
  • In 2015 & 2016, I participated in the Freihofer Training Challenge Group. (And I did again this year.) It is fun being part of a running group.

  • You run around Washington Park. Love this park.

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  • There is a lot of crowd support along the whole course.
  • It ends with a downhill 🙂
  • Everyone finishes with a smile.

  • They give you a free box of Freihofer chocolate chip cookies and a loaf of bread

  • Maybe I’ll make the newspapers again.. (I have several times!)

This 5k race is held on the first Saturday in June. So if you live near Albany, NY, come run it with me and 4,000 other awesome women runners! (Too late for this year?  Think about signing up for next year.)

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Happy Running! Do you have a favorite local race?

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TOLT: My Last Half

Since it is Thursday, I’m linking up today with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud Thursday.

thinking out loud

Here’s what I’m thinking about today:

  • My Last Half Marathon

What else?

Did you know that I PR‘d?? LOL

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There was one at my March half but not at this one unfortunately 😦

And I didn’t expect to…

Why?

  • My last half marathon time was 2:20:49.
  • I struggled to finish that race.
  • I ran a 5k race the past two weekends (instead of my 12 & 10 mile scheduled long runs.)
  • I didn’t do any LONG training runs (besides that half 3 weeks ago or any during the previous training cycle.)
  • I lazily did not run four days during the week preceding the race.
  • But I ran a 3.5 race just three days before the race.
  • I did not feel mentally prepared to run a fast race.
  • My Garmin keeps re-setting to zero after 6 miles so I would have no watch to gauge my pace.
  • I always walk at all the water stops.
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in this case, it was free beer

So insanely, I set out to run my 26th half marathon (on my hubby’s birthday no less)

It turned out to be my easiest half marathon and my fastest.

Why?

  • Cool weather conditions
  • No expectations
  • Ran by feel rather than staring at my watch
  • Paced myself behind a lady in a pink shirt
  • Flat course
  • Lot’s of rest so fresh legs
  • Just a fluke?

It was so effortless that….

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Maybe this is my fastest time (2:06:52) or maybe not.

Time will tell.

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I have a few shorter races planned for the summer.

I would love to PR in a 5K (before I’m too old to.)  Unfortunately my current PR race doesn’t exist anymore so I have to find another one.

I have registered for two more half marathons before the end of the year (Girls Weekends away for both):

  • October 1 – Wineglass
  • November 12 – Las Vegas

I may squeeze in one or two more.  Who knows?

For now, I’m treasuring this memory:

Happy Running! Ever wonder how you got your PR?

 

TOLT: Half Marathons. What else?

Since it is Thursday, I’m linking up today with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud Thursday.

thinking out loud

Here’s what I’m thinking about today:

My Last Half Marathon.

If you read my race post, you know that it was a difficult race for me.  Some things were out of my control but as I prepare for my next one, I am also thinking about things I can control.

Things you cannot control:

  • Weather – temperature, wind, humidity, etc.
  • Course – hills, loops, etc.
  • Injuries – unforeseen
  • Porta Potty stops

Things you can control:

  • Clothing – do not wear new items
  • Training – doing the work (drills, long runs, etc.)
  • Food – before and during
  • Pacing (don’t go out too fast)

Things you could control but can’t:

  • Clothing – when you have to wear a new item (for many reasons)
  • Training – when work, family, illness, vacation interrupts your training
  • Food – when you cannot eat what you want to eat (for whatever reason)
  • Pacing – when you run with a slower friend or with an injury or lack of training

The important point to remember and I have to remind myself of this often is that even if things go wrong and you don’t have the race that you want for a variety of reasons (things that you can or cannot control), you still can enjoy the experience and be proud of what you’ve accomplished.

My Next Half Marathon.

I’d love to say that I learned from all my recent pre-race snafus. But not quite.  I think I have the outfit and pre-race meal under control.  We’ll see about the weather.  And the course is pretty flat.

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mostly on the bike path

But my training is even worse.  I missed my 12 mile run while on vacation in Florida. I ran a rushed 5k and spent the rest of the day like this: driving to Cape Haze, lunch on the river, driving to Fort Myers, visiting the Ford & Edison Winter Estates, dinner & drinks during sunset at the Ritz back in Naples.

And I don’t regret it.

The next weekend, I ran a special 5K and skipped the extra miles due to the rain. Then spent the afternoon with my mentee and her sons.

So what could have maybe been a half marathon PR most likely will not be. (Remember this same course was my half PR back in October.)

2:08:59 – PR!!!!!

Again.  Finishing=Winning.  That is my goal.

I am not that runner who puts in the work.  I am that runner who has a non-running life that often takes precedence. C’est la vie!

love my friends

 

and the hubs too

Happy Running! What’s going in your life?  Please share.  Are you serious about your half marathon times?

TOLT: It’s Half Time, Vacation Time, etc.

Since it is Thursday, I’m linking up today with Amanda for Thinking Out Loud Thursday.

thinking out loud

Here’s what I’m thinking about today:

  • Half Time:

And I’m not talking about football. This weekend I am heading to NYC to run the Shape Women’s Half Marathon.

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I am, of course, weather stalking:

Glad the race isn’t Sat…

My preference would be weather like this past weekend – sunny and cool but as long as it doesn’t rain, I’ll be happy.

What to wear is pretty easy since I always wear a SkirtSports skirt and tank. I’m going purple for this race.

The logistics and weekend events are still up in the air and it’s Thursday.  I may be going and staying in a hotel room with two other women or maybe only one.  One is injured and can’t decide if she wants to walk or stay home.  We may be driving 1 1/2hrs and taking the train to the city or taking the train from Albany and taking the bus back.  I’m thinking the first option since it is cheaper.

We are staying in a hotel in Harlem on 124th St.  Tentative plans are drop off bags, bib pick up (57th), hotel check in, new Whitney museum (13th St) and dinner.  We are having dinner with another local runner.  There’s another STEM graduate who running the race.  I need to try to plan a meet-up with her as well as another blogger.

Race-cations are always exciting even if they are short.

  • Freihofer Run for Women Training Challenge:

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This is the 7th year of this program and my third year participating. I signed up for the Advanced group again and we already had 6 weeks of training.  We have a great group of new and returning runners. I only go on Mondays but I actually like the speed drills this year.  They seem to be less painful than previous years (or maybe I’m just more relaxed and not trying to be the fastest.)

Patrick, who is young and cute, is still one of our coaches. He is constantly scolding me for not running as fast as he thinks I am able and mostly for racing every weekend.  However, I am able to ask him questions and he gives me useful advice (that I may or may not follow LOL).

  • Upcoming Florida Vacation:

With work and this weekend in NYC, I’m not ready.  We leave on a 6am flight next Wednesday.  I’m away this weekend, have my running group Monday evening and tennis Tuesday evening.  Yikes! When do I pack for 8 days away??

But looking forward to sunsets and fun times on the tennis courts and soaking up the sun on the beach.

If you know me, you know that although there are very few races this time of year in Florida, since we are there 2 weeks earlier than usual, I thought I’d take a look.

May 7 – 7:30 am

I found one – two loops around Old Naples.  We have tickets for a show the night before so I don’t know if I can talk someone with a car into getting up early to drive me.  We’ll see.

Happy Running! What’s new with you today? Tell me in the comments.