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Sunday, August 27, 2006

Annapolis 10 Mile Run

Holy crap, that was a tough race. I mean, I knew it would be but damn. I'll have pictures eventually, Davida didn't run and was out on the course taking photos. Kristy didn't run it, she will be in Virgina next week to run the Virginia Beach Half Marathon. We gathered at the Navy-Marine Corps stadium in my home town of Annapolis bright and early at 7am. The 2:1 group was me, Kathy, Debra & Colleen. Caryn decided to go to 3:1. Kathy was at first going to do 3:1s, but I pouted and she changed to 2:1, but I ended up not really running with her during the race anyway.

We started out sorta fast and I decided to sort of run alone. My watch was on a different schedule than Kathy's so when I would walk, I would fall behind, then they would walk and I would catch up again when I started running. Mile 1 around the stadium, Debbie passed us. Mile 2, while we were running down Rowe Blvd towards the state house, Todd and ErikaW passed us. He apparently ran in the back of the pack at first because he found a couple old friends from TRP at the race (I never found them, even though they passed me at some point).

The residents of Annapolis were great. I cannot stress this enough, they were far more embracing of running than at any other race I've ever run. I've run through neighborhoods before, at the Race for Our Kids through Pikesville, or several different races through Federal Hill last year. This was so much better. Residents were out on the streets with tables set up, handing out cups of water, gatorade, beer (yes, one guy was handing out cups of beer), orange slices, etc. Many, many, many residents were sitting outside in beach chairs, holding signs or just generally cheering everyone on. My favorite, though... the residents who were out with the hoses. Some set up sprinklers, some just had hoses, but those people were awesome. It felt SO GOOD to run through sprinklers!!! Although, right when we would go through one, it would be shockingly cold.

Oh, and the midshipmen at the water stops - hello!! Colleen was like "oh, no! Navy boys! We can't walk in front of the Navy boys!" I said f*ck it, but that was mile 9.

Anyway, details of the race... It was hard. Hills, hills and more hills. The worst was the Severn River Bridge, which is one of my favorite bridges anywhere, and had a beautiful view, but it was windy and steep, and we had to cross it twice - mile 4 and mile 9. I mean, the whole race was pretty much just miserable.

Race - BAD:

  • Hills
  • Bridge
  • Hills
  • Sun (no sunglasses)
  • Wind on Bridge
  • Gatorade had fishy smell, as if the water to mix it came out of the bay
  • Blisters

Race - GOOD:
  • Midshipmen at water stops
  • Beer during the race (which I spilled down my front, but I thankfully was not pulled over on the way home)
  • Residents with water or food or drinks
  • Residents with hoses
  • Awesome fleece shirt at the end
I also got to see ColleenM at a water stop, who went to high school with me, and StephanieA at the finish line, who used to work with me at Sam Goody. My friend from high school, Mel, also ran the race. She is running the Steamtown marathon in October and is trying to qualify for Boston. Go Mel!

My time was 2:02:46.30, which came out to a 12:16 pace. As long as I didn't get stuck on yon Straggler's Bus, I'm more than satisfied with that time for what was a brutal race.



Amy said...

I'm doing this race for the first time this year - do you have any recommendations for the last 2 weeks of training? I haven't done much hill training, and I know it's a tough course, but that blog just made me even more nervous! When do they start putting people on the bus??

Amy said...

Oh also - you mentioned that your mile ended up being just over 12 minutes - what is it usually? How often did you stop to walk, and for how long?

Kim said...

Well, with this description, that was 2006 and my first year training for a marathon, so this race was my longest to that point. I ran it in 2007 also and I'll be running this year, too.

In 2007, I ran 20 miles the weekend before the race... so, I can't give really great advice on training. I am always training for another race (marathon or half marathon) with Annapolis as just a race that I run as part of my training. This year, I'll be doing 15 miles the weekend before the race -- I'm training for the Baltimore Half Marathon.

I'm not sure what your pace usually is but if you're fairly slow (doing a 5k in more than about 33 minutes or more), if you have trouble with hills I would just walk up them. If not, I would just take it easy up the hills. Especially if you haven't done hill training, there's no point in killing yourself to go up the hills and the bridge is especially steep. But, that's also where the photographers are ;)

Do some little hills between now and then as practice. Hopefully you've incorporated a long run of at least 10 miles into your training before now, but if this is your target race I wouldn't try to do it next weekend. Next weekend, do an easy 6-7 miles. But like I said, that depends upon what your training has been up until now.

I run the Galloway method, which is run/walk/run. Were it not for Galloway, I would never have been able to complete a marathon. I've done different intervals for different races. This year I'm training at a run 1 min 30 sec, walk 1 min interval. I did 2 min run and 1 min walk for 2006 and 2007 Annapolis races. I haven't figured out what my intervals will be this year. It all depends on what your normal pace is and what you think your goal time is. If you want to email me at I can potentially give you more specific advice.

As for the bus, I haven't ever seen a bus at Annapolis. There is definitely one at Marine Corps, but rumor has it that the Annapolis Bus is a myth. Still, I wouldn't risk it. The race instructions say you must maintain a 12 minute per mile pace before you return over the Severn River Bridge at mile 9. I kept a 12:16 pace in 2006 and something over a 13 minute pace in 2007 and neither year did I end up on the bus, nor have I ever known anyone who has. DO NOT stress out at the race about this. Just run your race and do your thing and if you end up trying to hard to go faster than your pace because you're worried about the bus you're just going to go too fast and wear yourself out and die at the end.

So... just go and run and don't worry about it. It's a fun race, the Annapolis Residents are great and the spectators are awesome, so have a great time, slap some hands and cheer for yourself. Enjoy running down Main Street and through the Naval Academy and just have a GREAT TIME!!!!

Good luck!

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