This is what I’ve been training for all spring (well, and the upcoming Baltimore 10 mile race): the Chestertown Tea Party Classic Distance race.
Last year, I ran the 5k version of this race with my friend Amie. This year, I wanted to go all out and run the 10 mile race.
Race #11. Heyyy!!
Fun fact: the first time I ran a race (in 2010), I had NO CLUE what to do with the race chip. I not-so-casually watched others around me and finally figured out that it goes on my shoe. ha!
The mob scene of a start line. Seriously, we were packed in there. And I’m short. So I cannot be seen.
The dude in the bright yellow shirt won the 5k, I think. He was cruisin’!
Only cool races like the Chestertown Tea Party race get a dude in colonial British attire to mark the start of the race by gun. True story.
My entire little town
gets transformed for Memorial Day Weekend. We host the Chestertown Tea Party Festival
which is a yearly reenactment of the dumping of British tea in the Chester River. It may or may not have actually happened in 1774, but hey…it’s fun to celebrate anyway.
I felt ready for this race. I’ve run the entire course before, as part of my training for this race. But today was hot. Very hot. Muggy and hot…even at 8 a.m.
I forced myself to start slow. My first mile clocked around 9 minutes. The first 4.5 miles flew by…I was cruisin! Around mile 6, I stopped for my first water station stop. After the crazy side stitch I experienced during the St. Michaels run
, I was a little hesitant to drink water, but it was too hot to pass the station. I walked through the water station, drank just a tiny sip of water, and poured the rest over my head.
Then, around 6.5, the side stitch started. Crazy! Just a sip of water affects me while running. I brought my pace down, and stopped at the next water station (around mile 8), poured more water over my head, and let myself continue walking for .2 miles, stretching the stitch as I walked.
I was able to recover quickly and ran my fastest mile between 8 and 9: 7 minutes! Feeling good. I slowed down my pace between miles 9 and 9.5, prepping for a sprint finish.
I just LOVE sprinting to the end. Best part of the whole race experience!
Watch out! Mad sprinting lady rounding the corner!
It felt so good to complete this race. 10 miles in the heat is no joke! I finished in 1:38:59.
I definitely spent the entire afternoon drinking water and Gatorade and napping with the kitten. Kind of like heaven.
When I shared the results with my friend Amie, she reminded me of how far I’ve come in just a year. It’s true…I’ve run 7 races since the Tea Party race last year, and both my time and form have improved drastically.
I train smarter, run faster, and have so much more fun with running this year than I did last year at this time. I’ve also dropped a few more pounds and have some wicked leg muscles, but that’s not the reason I run. I run because it’s fun, because it’s a way to challenge myself, and a way I can track improvement. Running also helps me maintain a strong level of physical fitness. I run to stay healthy.
I have two more races this spring…one next weekend with Amie in Annapolis (girlfriend getaway!), and then the challenging Baltimore 10 miler on June 16. Still training!!