2017 Army Ten Miler Recap

Today I ran my 10th Army Ten Miler. After 10 times you’d think there wouldn’t be much more to say about this race, but this year was different in many ways. I wasn’t at my best and the humidity was at its worst, but my 2017 Army Ten Miler recap isn’t as quite as gloomy as the weather.  

2017 Army Ten Miler Recap

Security was high with almost constant helicopter surveillance.

Pre-Race Logistics

I used to gripe about pre-race logistics for this race, but at least that much was easier this year. I had a business trip from Thursday to Saturday, and one of my Moms Run This Town friends was kind enough to pick up my race packet for me. I stopped by her house on the way home from the airport and got home just before 10 pm.

The weather forecast was looking iffy–mid 70s, high humidity, chance of thunderstorms–so I added a giant trash bag to my race day gear, and chose a lightweight t-shirt and shorts for my race outfit. I was in bed by 11 with my alarm set for 5 am.

  • First time I ever applied Body Glide to my feet (to ward off blisters in case of wet socks). I didn’t like how it made my feet feel slippery.

When that alarm went off I hit snooze a few times, started the coffee maker, and got ready. I drank one cup of coffee, made a half PB + honey sandwich to eat later, and checked the ATM website to make sure the weather wasn’t causing any changes. I had decided to leave the house @ 6, and my usual Sunday 6:00 am alarm went off as I headed out the door.

I parked at the same shopping center garage I parked at last year, and it was just getting busy as I arrived. It was a short walk to the Pentagon, but a looooong walk to the starting line. I logged over 3000 steps by the time I got to my corral!

2017 Army Ten Miler Recap

Arriving early means no lines!

Since I had arrived so early to make sure I could park easily, I had about an hour and a half until race time. I made a stop at the pristine port-a-pottys, ate my sandwich, and passed the time people-watching. The announcer kept advising us to heed the weather conditions (87% humidity), stay hydrated and watch for the medics every 1/2 mile on the course.

  • First time I wasn’t freezing waiting for the race to start.
  • First time I was warm waiting for the race to start.
  • First time I didn’t have pre-race jitters.

I was in the second corral, so I could hear all the ceremonial events–the Invocation, Presentation of Colors, National Anthem, and Wounded Warrior start. 

I was struck by the flags at half-mast (for Las Vegas) and
awed by all the service men and women lining up to race. 

2017 Army Ten Miler Race Recap

The cannon went off for our corral at 8:08. I was glad the rain had held off while we were waiting, but it started to drizzle right as we started. I would have welcomed an air-clearing downpour, but it was a persistent drizzle that hung in the air and made the road slick.

  • First time not trying to set a PR

My goal hope was to finish with an 8:45 pace, based on my results at the Reston Perfect 10 two weeks ago and figuring the relatively flat course would balance out the warm, humid weather. Aside from the first too-fast mile, I did pretty well through the first 6 miles. 

2017 Army Ten Miler Recap

I noticed right away that my Garmin splits were not matching the course markers. I tried to stay closer to the tangents, but I was more concerned with running on a flat surface and avoiding potholes. My first mile was off by 0.1, and it grew from there to an extra .23 by the time I finished. 

2017 Army Ten Miler Recap Garmin Data

I don’t know what this Garmin data is based on, but it certainly could reflect how I felt during the last 2/3 of the race! Yes, I started off strong, but then I tanked!

2017 Army Ten Miler Recap Garmin Data

On the other hand, my heart data shows that my effort was consistent, even if my output wasn’t. It’s also interesting to see that my average heart rate during Reston was only 138 bpm, despite it being a really hilly course. More proof that I’m a fair weather runner! 

2017 Army Ten Miler Recap Wounded Warriors

This veteran and wounded warrior embody the Never Quit motto
and why this race never fails to inspire gratitude
for those who truly give their lives in service to our country.

It’s not even fair to say I had a goal of hitting an 8:45 pace, because when it got hard, I wasn’t willing to push myself to run faster. I saw more people needing medical attention than I’ve ever seen before, and while I don’t think I was anywhere near my breaking point, I just wasn’t committed to running harder. I didn’t really train for this race, I’m still treating my plantar fasciitis, and the weather was miserable. 

Lest you think I’m whining about the weather, I’m pretty sure his is another first.
The event was downgraded due to the high heat and humidity
and they shortened the course by about 1 mile after I finished.

As a ran that last, long mile to the finish line, I tried to pick up my pace, but it was an uphill battle even on the flat stretch to the finish. I was glad to see that I finished in under 90 minutes, and pleasantly surprised at the 8:45 average pace my Garmin gave me. Official race results won’t be out until tomorrow, but dividing my running time over 10 miles give me an 8:57 pace–one of my slowest ever, but this is a case of you get what you trained for. ๐Ÿ˜‰

2017 Army Ten Miler Recap

From the day I signed up for the 2017 Army Ten Miler, I planned on it being my last. I’m all about those round numbers, and stopping at ten Army Ten Milers seemed fitting. After today’s slog I’ve got no desire to run this course again, but we’ll see what happens when registration opens next year …. 

Weekly Wrap
I’m linking up with Holly and Tricia for the Weekly Wrap!  
Join in to support others in their efforts to be healthy. 

Did you see my recap of our anniversary century ride?
Luckily the weather was much nicer for that all-day event
last weekend!

What’s the worst weather you’ve had to race in?

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40 Responses to 2017 Army Ten Miler Recap

  1. Sara says:

    Wow! You are speedy with getting your race recap posted. Congrats on a strong race & hitting your goal paces (for your average). It’s always better to stay smart about your races than to end up needing medical attention.
    They make a body glide lotion in a green tube that is great for using on your feet in wet weather. I haven’t ever tried the glide on my feet for a comparison but the lotion doesn’t ever bother me or feel slick.

  2. Today was tough out there – I agree, I’ve never seen that many people go down. I also saw SO many people walking late in the race. What a horrible weather day but this race is always inspiring. I love ten milers, so while it was tough I was happy to run it.

  3. Wow, 10 Army 10 milers is pretty impressive! That’s crazy how humid it was at this time of year. Congrats for finishing!

  4. It was a nasty, nasty day to run today. It’s our big local race, and it poured this morning — but that didn’t make a dent in the humidity. I felt so sorry for the racers.

    I think given the conditions (not just the weather, but the travel, too), you did well. You’re really fast, you know — when I was training I had to run 9 minute miles. For 2 minutes. Because I do my run/walk. And I was dying running that pace just for 2 minutes!
    Judy @ Chocolaterunsjudy recently posted…Putting the R in Rest: 10/2-8 Weekly WrapMy Profile

  5. I remember freezing my butt off in the past in the starting corral of this race. Congrats on a tough earned finish.

  6. Marcia says:

    I feel your pain in those conditions. That’s the weather we had here in Chicago yesterday. Very nasty. The 99% humidity in Berlin sapped me as well. Nice job sticking to your plan and nailing that pace!

  7. Teresa says:

    Impressive pace for ‘not racing’ lady!! Congratulations on another Army 10 miler! I WILL do this race with Major Hubs one day! And since mid 70s and 87% humidity is exactly what I ran my long run in Saturday morning and what we’re so used to around here …I should be okay. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Teresa recently posted…Marathon Training Week 5: Steady She GoesMy Profile

  8. I’d love to give this race a chance…if only I didn’t live half a country away. No doubt, those are tough weather conditions to give 110% racing effort….you still had a decent finish time and your overall pace was not that far off your goal ๐Ÿ˜‰
    Kimberly Hatting recently posted…Another Week…My Profile

  9. Great pace for not “racing” it – especially given the lousy conditions! Humidity is such an energy suck – crazy to have these conditions in October!

  10. Kimberly G says:

    Wow! I mean the weather this weekend has just been ridiculous for so many races. I don’t think summer will ever leave – but it needs too! Congrats on a good race in awful humidity!!
    Kimberly G recently posted…Chicago Marathon Training Recap โ€“ Week 20My Profile

  11. Clarinda says:

    That weather sounds awful! Nice job slogging through.
    Clarinda recently posted…Run Laughlin Half Marathon Training Week 2My Profile

  12. Congrats on your race! You had a great time for still dealing with foot problems.
    Lacey@fairytalesandfitness recently posted…Weekly Wrap…October 8My Profile

  13. Congratulations on your 10th Army 10 miler race! Great pace too!!

  14. Lesley says:

    Great job getting the race done. That weather doesn’t sound good at all. I have family who did the race, but I haven’t heard from them how it went.

  15. Chaitali says:

    Congrats on that 8:45 average pace at a tough race! I was registered but I ended up deciding not to do the race once I saw the weather. I’m in the back of the pack, starting in the second to last wave, and I was worried the race would get shortened. I wanted to be sure I got in my assigned miles for marathon training since that’s my priority right now so just ran the 10 miles on the treadmill instead. That’s impressive that you’ve done this race ten times ๐Ÿ™‚
    Chaitali recently posted…WDW Marathon Training – Week 5My Profile

  16. Toni says:

    Great job! The humidity is rough. I ran a 5K Saturday and nearly died…

  17. HoHo Runs says:

    Nice job for not racing this one! I wouldn’t stop at ten times if this is a race you normally enjoy. Trail Toes. I swear by it for chafing anywhere — but it was made to prevent blisters on your feet. It will not feel slick. Thanks for linking!

  18. Rachel says:

    I still can’t believe they downgraded the race to a recreational run. That must have been some crazy weather you guys had!

    I think your time is very respectable given all the obstacles!
    Rachel recently posted…A Week of Adversity {Marine Corps Marathon Training: Week 15}My Profile

  19. Great job in spite of those conditions! It’s been a tough race season all around. I’m hoping that the cooler weather will inspire some confidence in my running.
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…Ain’t No Mountain High EnoughMy Profile

  20. Andrea says:

    Great recap! Congrats on the race. Glad it wasn’t freezing this year ๐Ÿ™‚

  21. Congrats on your finish! I can totally relate to not wanting to commit to pushing it in certain races. That’s ok sometimes too!

  22. Sharon says:

    Congrats on your 10th Army 10 miler! That is an accomplishment in itself and way to finish in miserable weather!
    Sharon recently posted…CIM Marathon Training Week 11 & Weekly Wrap: 10/2-10/8My Profile

  23. Congratulations on this tough race! I heard a lot of people struggled. This fall has been tough with the soul-sapping heat and humidity, I hope it ends soon!

  24. I love 10 mile races but haven’t found that many to do! Maybe I’ll add this to my bucket list…though the Cherry Blossom you do is really high on the list!

  25. This sounds like a really cool race. Great job given the conditions! I think it’s awesome you will round out at number 10…let’s see what happens next year!

  26. Angela @marathonsandmotivation.com says:

    Way to persevere in tough conditions!! I need to add this 10 mile race to my bucket list!

  27. You did great in that mess! I raced too in it and while I didn’t train for speed I surly thought I wouldn’t be as slow as I was. But you know this was a good mental race for me. I hope it’s the hardest one I’ll have to for a good while! I so get the just did not want to push anymore part!

  28. Karen Bayne says:

    You did fabulous! I lose so much pace in heat that I am always impressed when someone can stay close their goal pace. It has been super mucky and tough around here for sure! Congrats on surviving.

  29. You did great to cover the miles in those conditions! Way to keep a nice pace and finish strong.
    Amy @ Life to the Full recently posted…Cozy Gear for Cool Running | BUFFยฎ ThermoNet ReviewMy Profile

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