Cherry Blossom 10 Miler

On my quest to run a race in all 50 states, I figured I should run in DC too, even if it is not a state, it’s the nations capitol and my favorite American city, so an excuse to hit up the museums and memorials and run a race, come on, I wasn’t going to miss out on this.  When I put my name in for this race (it is a raffle race) I wasn’t sure I would get picked, but I was super happy when I did.  I was able to get a time ticket to my FAVORITE museum, the US Holocaust Memorial Museum and booked a hotel in an area I hadn’t stayed in before, was nervous about that, but it ended up working out nicely. But first, let me tell you about the race.

The race takes place during the Cherry Blossom Festival (hence the name) so first off, be prepared for DC to be SWARMING with tourists when you do this race, but hey, those blossoms are damn pretty.  The race starts right in front of the Washington monument, and there are 6 corrals of runners, all separated by color, I was in orange, and then of course the corral of elites.  This year it was cold race morning, starting temp was about 34 degrees, I was prepared with layers, so I did ok waiting around.  Once the race took off those, I was ready, cause I couldn’t feel my fingers.  Luckily it was a nice sunny day, so once you were running, it did warm up.  The race has some rolling hills, but nothing at all crazy I would say it is fairly flat and tons of beautiful scenery, you run by monuments and all the blossoms in bloom was amazing.  They have entertainment through out the race, from drummers, to a sax player, it was great.  There are not crowds through out the race, and some points were pretty quiet, but I like that mix.  My only issue is, you are never out of a crowd, almost all races I end up running alone, or with only 4-5 other people around, never happened in this race.  And I would think it would be difficult run this race for a PR because you would always be trying to get around people.  You finish in front on the Washington Monument too, plenty of people there to cheer you on.  30414835_10211347535224438_3104628710620266496_o

Overall, I did very much enjoy the race, I ran it in under 2 hours, so pretty happy with that.  I did have some knee pain, so I took today off to hopefully hold that off from becoming something, shall see how the rest of the week goes.  I did also do a TON of walking around DC, so that probably didn’t help.

If you didn’t know, I am a giant history nerd and so DC, is my joy I love to visit the museums and memorials, if you want to see all my pics, check out my instagram @RuninRedSox but here are some photos

Also the hotel, I picked the Courtyard DC in the NoMa section of DC, and I couldn’t recommend this place more.  Super clean, super pleasant workers, and SO CLOSE TO THE METRO, like a 5 minute walk to the metro.  I will use this hotel again, because I will go back to DC soon, hopefully with Lars, so we can visit some more museums.  If you can, do this race, and make sure you hang out in DC, such a fun city to visit

oh hey, another one checked off the map 20180409_182911

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Newport 10 Miler

Oh hey, Happy Birthday to me.  Yesterday I turned 36 and got to run a 10 mile road race in one of my favorite places, Newport, RI.  Newport is a gorgeous place, right on the water and full of shopping, awesome restaurants and amazing old and new mansions.  My friend, and fellow fitness addict Cidhinnia, asked me to join her in the race back in 2016, and when I saw it landed right on my birthday, I figured, why not.

One thing you should know about Newport, is still a pretty old time type place, the roads are mostly narrow and winding so, when I say I recommend early bib pick up and getting to the race early, I HIGHLY recommend doing both things, there will be tons of traffic on race day, as I said, narrow roads, also, Fort Adams (where the race starts and ends) only has one way in and one way out, so yeah, traffic.  I did pick up my bib the day before and very glad I did, the Fort itself is super cool and they do tours so check that out.  The grounds around it are beautiful and right on the water.  Race morning, we got there early and just hung out by the water, it was a beautiful day, sunny, high 50s/low 60s, pretty much a perfect day.  The race started at 7:30 and takes off in 3 raves, fastest people 9:00 mile and under, 2nd rave is 9:30 to 11:00 mile, 3rd rave, slowest and walkers. The group I was with did the 3rd rave, I wasn’t trying to PR anything since this was my first race after my marathon so I just wanted to enjoy this.  Of course, walkers just stuck themselves wherever they wanted (ANNOYING) so had to run around them but used to that.

The views on this race are AMAZING, ocean views for days, then you get to run a Bellevue Ave, this is where the old mansions once owned by the likes of the Vanderbilts and Carnegies are located, and man, they are pretty amazing.  You finish the race inside the fort.  I finished in 1:44:27 a 10:26 average pace, very happy with that and enjoyed running the race.

36 started off nicely, after the race Lars and I went to my favorite chowder place for lunch, Iggy’s Doughboys then went and got an Awful Awful (an amazing milkshake) at Newport Creamery.  I always enjoy my birthday and this year was no different.  Excited to see where running will take me this year.

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Garden State 10 Miler

So yesterday I ran the Garden State 10 Miler, first time this race has been held, and it was put on by the Garden State Track Club.  It was a great race, well organized, well put together and overall just well done.  It was cold and windy, but I know that the race organizers have no say on the weather and while it sucked to stand around in, it was great to run in.

And oh yeah, I SET A NEW PR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  My previous 10 mile time was 1:46, and yesterday I ran a 1:38, oh yeah, speed demon.  I did almost perfect negative splits too.  And who knew when my boyfriend left my good sneakers at my brothers house and I had to use old worn out sneakers to run that I would run this well.  My bf believes he helped because he made me angry, he could be right, I just hope he never does it again.

The race itself started and ended in a really nice park (again I wish the weather had been nice, cause the park looked beautiful) The roads were rolling hills but nothing at all crazy and we got to run through a nice quiet town, with pretty houses and farms to look at.  Also the always had the side of the road we were running on, blocked off to traffic and that was just great, never had to worry about moving over for cars and I really appreciated that.  Lots of great volunteers and plenty of cops around, all were super pleasant.  For a first time race, I was really super impressed, I hope they keep this up. I might be back next year.

Even the medal is cool NJ 10 Medal

and of course, I got another state checked off the list, 13 down 37 to go

State list NJ