This weekend I ran my third race of 2017–the Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run. It’s my 6th year in a row running this race (I think my 7th time altogether), and I’ve almost figured out how to conquer Hains Point. Maybe next time?
I was so happy to see trees still in bloom around Hains Point!
It’s also my 5th year working behind the scenes for the Cherry Blossom Blog and fundraising for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals–a big thank you to everyone who donated and helped me exceed my goal!
Cherry Blossom Expo & VIP Dinner
Before I get to my race recap, I have to mention a few things about the Cherry Blossom expo and VIP dinner. The expo is held at the National Building Museum, which has a huge atrium that was filled with vendors.
Walking through is like a checklist of my favorite running gear–love my Racedots, love my compression socks, love my RUSeen vest, love my bondi bands, love The Stick–so I wasn’t tempted to buy anything.
I also wasn’t in the mood to take a selfie, but loved the backdrop they had set up–with a rack of selfie sticks you could borrow–brilliant!
Because of the work I do behind the scenes at the Cherry Blossom blog I am invited to the Saturday night VIP dinner, and it’s such an honor to be there with the elite athletes and race organizers. They are so dedicated to putting on a premiere running event and raising money for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.
How cute are these petit-fours?
It’s also fun to catch up with the other members of the social media team in person, and enjoy a nutritious meal and cherry blossom-themed dessert!
Cherry Blossom Race Recap
After nailing my goal at the NYC Half, I did not have specific time goal for this race, but was hoping to average about an 8:10 pace. The conditions were perfect. No extreme wind like last year. No car vs. pedestrian accident forcing a shorter course like the year before. No excessive tourist crowds like the year of my all-time PR.
I didn’t have a specific racing plan, but somewhere around mile 3 I thought to break the race into three 3-mile segments, plus the last mile at the end. Since I already was at mile 3, I was 1/3 done! I decided to maintain what felt like a comfortably hard pace for miles 3-6, cut myself some slack through miles 6-9 (my nemesis, Hains Point), and then push it to the end after mile 9–which still is a meaningful milestone.
Thing went pretty well until right around mile 8. At that point, I felt like my abdominal muscles were cramping up–not GI cramps, but muscle cramps. I think I’ve trained myself to run with a tight core, and my core was exhausted! I decided to ease up on my pace until mile 9 so I would have something left for a to push to the finish. Looking at my Garmin, I didn’t have that much left, but I’ll blame that on that crazy pace for mile 4!
I have no idea if I was smiling as a I crossed the finish line, but I was smiling when I saw that I nailed my goal and ran my second-fast time!
If you participated in one of the the Cherry Blossom races (the ten miler or the 5k) please link up your recap over on the Cherry Blossom Blog!