Ten miles in 1:02:26, 6:15 pace
I could barely get the GPS map to fit nicely in my screenshot because this race was a giant out-and-back along the Chicago lakefront. I’d never run a 10-mile race before, but this time blows away the 1:05 I was shooting for.
We started between Soldier Field and McCormick Place. I was seeded in corral 1, so I had a pretty good view of all the pre-race pageantry. Very military-themed since it was Memorial Day weekend and “Soldier” Field, with a moment of silence for Boston. I could see all the elites hanging out in their designated area. It was awesome to see them all take off when they were released to do a quick warmup before the gun. Made me a little jealous as I had been stuck jumping around trying to stay loose in my square-foot of space for the previous 15 minutes.
Gun goes off and we very quickly head through the tunnel under McCormick. My GPS was messed up right away from that, so my autolap was always going off early. We ran about 2 miles on the access road, and then I was surprised that we dumped out onto northbound Lake Shore Drive. This could have been precarious with traffic, but we had the whole thing to ourselves! I was running all over the place to make my tangents like I was in Kramer’s extra-wide lanes.
Going into the race, I had planned on running steady 6:30s for the first half and then check how I felt. I had trained at that speed and felt pretty confident I could keep it up, maybe stretching it out to 6:20s in the second half if I felt good enough. Well, after that first mile I was cranking out 6:15s like they were nothing. I was freaking out that I was going too fast, but it felt really smooth and natural. I crossed the halfway point in 31:27 and sucked down a PowerBar energy gel I had stuffed in the pocket in the back of my shorts. I had a little trouble getting it out — anyone behind me probably thought I was doing some serious butt-scratching or something.
As we came back north on the bike path, it got a lot colder. The breeze from the lake was more in my face and definitely chilly. I told myself to hold onto 6:20 pace until I got to mile 9 and then I could let loose with everything I had. Each mile kept ticking by between 6:15 and 6:20 so I knew I could be somewhere close to 1:03 at the end. I used to run on this portion of the path at lunch when I worked closer to the lake, so it was familiar territory and helped me know exactly where I was.
As soon as I got to the last marker, I mentally recorded my elapsed time at 56:40 and turned on the jets. Cranked up my leg turnover considerably and passed at least 25 people on my way into the stadium. I was like one of those jerks on the highway flying by you at 90 mph when you’re doing the speed limit. When I came up out of the tunnel and onto the field, it was spectacular. I crossed a mat and immediately heard the announcer calling my name over the PA. A quick (and surprisingly uneven?) sprint to the 50-yard line and I was done with my hands in the air on the big screen!
5:46 for my last mile?? Who have I become? I can’t believe I pulled this off. I was barely running 5Ks at this speed 6 months ago. My confidence is through the roof right now with three straight PRs. Kind of makes we want to sign up for a marathon next month and see what I could do, but I’ll wait until Chicago and try to ride this as far as I can take it. All the pace calculators are pointing to a 2:55 marathon right now, so that makes me feel very good about my chances to break 3:00 in October.
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- megorun said: Wow 5:46 last mile. You really blazed this. Damn!
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- runningeek said: Congrats speedy!
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- karikeepsrunning said: Incredible :)
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- tinkerbellrun said: A 5:46 mile!?!? Congratulations you Speed Daemon you!!!! :D
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- keepgoinggreen said: Awesome!!!!!
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- mrcarlosbc said: WOW! Speed Demon!
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- exitrowiron said: Great time. Congrats!
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- runslikeapenguin said: Woohoo!
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- shortmom said: Amazing!!!!!
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- usualchatter said: Awesome race recap for an awesome race! What’s your secret training technique????
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