Bedford Rotary 10K

10Ks I feel like are hard to come by.  While searching my running sites, I found the Bedford Rotary 10K, which started and finished at one of the satellite hospitals I work out of with my residency program.  It cost a whole $20 online, so of course I couldn’t say no.

The race started at 830, which means I could leave at 745 and still be early, even after picking up my bib.  The race was old school in the sense that it wasn’t even chip timed- you turned in your bag tag at the bottom of your bib as you crossed the finish.

It was in the high 50s and sunny out, perfect for running,  All 70 ish of us lined up at the make shift start and were sent off with a bell.  The first mile was good before we hit some minor hills that I didn’t remember Bedford having.  Most of the course was on paved roads along the metro parks.  The first water stop came around mile 2, and really, you didn’t need more than 2 people at each stop.  After mile 2, say hello to some more hills.  Really Bedford, I thought you were flatter.  We took a few turns (before and after mile 3) and began heading back towards are starting grounds.  The last 3,2 miles were decent and gave me a negative split, always a plus.  I passed a few people towards the end, but I couldn’t catch the little kid in front of me (daggon it).

Final time of 59:18.  And 1st in my Age Group.  There may or may not have been 1 person in my age group, but I’ll take it.  Good little shake out race after last week’s half!  Who knows if I got a prize, as after 20 minutes of waiting at the finish…

River Run Half Marathon

I always love getting emails for races I semi forgot I signed up for.  If only I looked at my running calendar more closely!!  This was year 15 for the River Run Half on Cleveland’s west side.  It’s a point to point race (starts in Berea, ends in Rocky River) with about 1500 runners.  The nice thing though, is no hotels, no planes, I can get in my car and go.

I picked up my bib and such on Wednesday after work.  Hermes Racing joined forces with Fleet Feet Cleveland, so for this race, you could pick up your stuff at any Fleet Feet store.  You give your name, they assign a bib to you, you’re good to go!  Key is to not lose your bib (because that would stink).

Yesterday was rough with a late OSU game, which they lost.  I watched with friends as we had a game of poker going on at a fellow resident’s house.  I left after midnight and didn’t fall asleep until at least 1 am.  Not the best idea when you have to wake up at 530 to be out the door by 6 at the latest.  I drove to Rocky River HS and parked and got shuttled over to the start (after using the bathroom).  We at least got a little preview of the course.  We got to the starting area and walkers were already on the course (this is a good race for walkers as it offers a 7 AM start time, kicker, you park at the start, not closer to the finish).  I’d been working on a gatorade which led to standing in a non moving port a potty line for a bit.  I checked a bag just so I could save a throw away sweatshirt and powerade!

We were sent off at 8 AM sharp.  The first 2.5 miles or so were neighborhood, while the rest of the course was a straight shot along the Rocky River.  Though it was paved road, the entire course was blocked off from traffic.  It’s a very scenic course, so not having a crowd on course was actually kind of nice.  The only downside was lack of restrooms on course, but what can you do.  Weather was beyond perfect- 50s-60s at the start, not too hot by the finish.  There were some hills, but nothing like Atlanta a few weeks ago!!  It’s also very shady, so you’re not being beat down by the sun.

I slowed down the second half of the race, finishing in 2:17:14.  I’m working to improve my times as my halves haven’t been fast this year at all compared to last year.  After the finish, I got my medal and grabbed some pizza and my bag before hopping on the 10-20 seater bus back to the HS.  Granted, I know a good amount of people had to go back to the start for parking and that they need a few of the regular size buses, but the HS parkers could have used it too for how long the line was!  An over all good race though.  Head over to find your results too!

Welcome Back to Racing!- St. Malachi 5 Miler

I’ve been relatively silent this winter on the blog.  Yes, there was the Indianapolis Santa Hustle Half (which I stayed with friends from college), but it never made it to the blog.  Thanks to a little thing called residency, weekends (and racing) have been minimal since mid December.  Factor in negative degree weather and few races in Cleveland (heck, any nice weather days have been during the week if we’re lucky), I welcomed myself back to racing this morning.

2014’s first race happened to be the St. Malachi 5 miler in downtown Cleveland.  What’s better, is that it was a 9:45 AM start time and the roads were clear (no snow or ice!).  I got to the race around 9 AM, and credit the Luck of the Irish for my free parking find.  If the City of Cleveland would have been on their game, they could have charged us for it, but their loss.  I trekked up to St. Malachi’s and picked up my bib and shirt with more than enough time to run back to my car and drop things off.

The race starts at the Veteran’s Bridge (at Detroit and Superior) and we were sent off with bag pipes playing (would you expect anything less?).  Lots of green, leprechauns and orange.  The first 2 miles of the race were relatively ok.  No hills that we cared about, although, some sun would have been nice.  We also made a quick realization about how badly the City of Cleveland needs to fix its potholes.  A runner in front of me 1.5 miles in face planted thanks to a pothole and about 3 miles in, as we doubled back after our turnaround, a runner with a running stroller ended up with a front wheel that came completely off (and we were 2 miles away from the finish).  You don’t realize how fast you aren’t until you see the lead runners coming back and approaching mile 3 as you’re hitting mile 2 (oh well, what can you do?).  After mile 3 and hitting wind head on, and a long steady hill slowed me down.  I also realized how I’ve been on the treadmill too much (thank work and weather for that one).  We came around the Brown’s stadium (if only they were any good) and kept on trekking on.  After mile 4 we were close to where we started and came back over Veteran’s Bridge.  Always nice to be greeted by the 2 mile racers cheering you on (and the people already done with your race).  The nice thing was that the last 1/3 of a mile though, was that it was all down hill!  A 46:16 finish is something I’ll take since it was 40*, windy and mostly cloudy out.

Post race, we had venders set up in the parking lot outside the church.  Obligatory bananas, water and green bagels were available.  The best part was the soup being passed out to warm you up.  St. Malachi and Hermes racing do it right- finish the race next to an Irish Pub who love to have runners after races!  I didn’t go (as I had to pick up race stuff for my 15K tomorrow).  This race is a keeper and one I’ll be back for…

Cleveland Rock n Roll 1/2 Marathon

After 19 straight days of work, a good 11 of which were spent on surgery call, I got to spend this last weekend off and got the gift of sleeping in on Saturday morning!!  I also was able to get in a long run with the Inaugural Rock n Roll Cleveland Half Marathon.  I was able to leave work by 4:30 Friday afternoon and hustled to the convention center in downtown Cleveland.  I got even luckier in that I parked across the street for $2.25 for the hour I was there.  I went and registered my parents for the race ($150 EACH! I couldn’t even find a coupon code to work for them) before picking up my own stuff.  My parents were signed up for the Woodrow Wilson Half in DC, but because politicians in DC don’t know how to agree on anything, the race was canceled due to the government shutdown and the first 8 miles of the race was in a national park.  I picked up my gear and then my parents gear.  I find that humorous since RnR makes a big deal about not picking up other people’s stuff and then I manage to still figure out a way to do it.

Saturday, my parents came to town and finally saw my apartment.  We went to church, dinner at a Cuban restaurant and rum bar and had some Cuban Margaritas.  We rushed home for the OSU/Northwestern games.  I’ve learned I hate night games because I don’t go to sleep till after 11 and waking up at 6 for a race isn’t fun!

We woke up Sunday morning and were out the door by 6:40 AM.  We were downtown and parked by 7:15 (we’d learn to later hate our parking spot).  We all took a bathroom break and waited for the race to start (and I ran into a neighbor of mine who’s daughter was running).  About 7:45, we went to our corals and I ran into some Half Fanatics- we always introduce ourselves by our numbers.  After a Neil Diamond national anthem, we were off.  It was 74* and 81% humidity at the start and it was miserable.  I was sweating buckets after the first few miles and my calf was store at least through mile 3.  The first few miles weren’t bad, but at mile 3 we came down a huge hill.  The mini marathon (3.5 mile) runners then had to go right back up that hill and we all laughed. Until we got to later in the race.

As the race went on, we went through Ohio City, other parts of Cleveland and parts I’m pretty sure I’ve seen on A&E’s The First 48 (a show investigating homicides).  The humidity felt like it was increasing despite no rain and about 5 miles in my clothes were drenched and there was no way I was coming close to a PR.  We weaved through Cleveland and between mile 7 and 8, we crossed one of Cleveland’s bridges to Polka music.  We then hit some parks of Cleveland and got hill pay back for laughing at the 3.5 milers around mile 10.  More cursing ensued for sure.  We also had miles 9-13 that were off for some reason (like 1/3 of a mile off), but it eventually made itself up.  After dodging pot holes, wishing for rain to break humidity and taking water at every water stop, we crossed back over the polka bridge and had 2 miles or so to go.  Seeing the Cleveland skyline was a good sign that’s for sure.  Seeing First Energy Stadium and the Q was even better.  However, not being able to see the finish was a tad obnoxious.  Even more obnoxious? Hearing the finish is ‘just around the corner.’ Five corners later…

I finished, that’s all I cared about. 2:16:31 and I blame the humidity.  I picked up my medal, grabbed some food and 2 things of chocolate milk and waited for my parents to come in.  They started about 5 minutes behind me.  Humidity got to them too during the race.  By the time we met up, we were all spent.  Luckily I drove because I was the one who could still walk and who wasn’t getting any sort of foot, calf or leg cramping.

RnR Cleveland was ok.  Not a fan of the course or the hills it involved.  Part of it has to do with some of Cleveland’s roads being less than ideal.  I think for the money we spend on it, they could do more at the expo and at the end of the race.  I did it because I needed a long run, but I don’t see myself signing up for another one any time soon.

Looking for results, finisher’s certificates and pics?  Head over here

Random Musings of a new Clevelander

I’ve recently moved back to the midwest and to the mother state of Ohio.  I’m still finding the running places to go and the stores that people like around here (let’s face it, I have no idea what running stores are good or not).  So far, I’ve found a Second Sole store a few miles away from me with a running group on Saturdays (maybe?) and  Fleet Feet in Pepper Pike.

My first running group experience was over a week ago at Fleet Feet (they meet on Mondays at 630).  I had no idea I was running with 2 women who were at the 2012 Women’s Marathon Olympic Marathon trials.  That was mildly horrifying and yes, at 930 min/mile, I was the slowest one there.  See ya back at the store!!  At least with both Second Sole and Fleet Feet I was able to find some good races to look into in the area and now that I’ve found out my schedule, I can plan my minimal social life.  Any suggestions on places to run and stores to utilize are appreciated!!

In other running related schinanigans, I’ve found some deals:

  1. Chicago 10K (Chicago, IL August 11, 2013): $10 off with FLEETFEET10K
  2. Conquer the Bridge 5 Miler and Half marathon (San Pedro, CA September 2, 2013): Active members get 15% off with conquer15bdg
  3.  MAD Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K and 5K (Idaho Falls, Idaho July 27, 2013): Active Members get $10 off with  13mad10mar
  4. 5K Dance Party: Check out their Living Social deal for various Cities!
  5. Newly Added: 20% off City Sports with RWB1776.  One full price and select clearance items through Monday

Enjoy!

Cleveland Marathon or Bust! [And I Busted :-(]

What. A. Weekend.  I was signed up for the Cleveland Marathon and had every intention of running all 26.2 miles of it.  However, it wasn’t meant to be.  On Friday after work, I ended up driving about 5 hrs of my drive to Cleveland and ended up in Monroeville, PA.  I decided I didn’t want to do 7 hrs of driving the day before a race and wanted to make sure I got to the expo in time and get into my hotel, etc.  I got to Monroeville around 11 pm and was able to find a hotel right off of I-76.  It was there that I realized I had forgotten a few things when I packed- like long running tights, Body Glide and Advil.  Some of this was no problem as I can find some at an expo or CVS.  Saturday Morning, I checked out of the hotel and made it to Cleveland by 9 AM.  I tried to check in early, but the hotel was still booked from the night before.  I headed over to the expo and volunteered at the number pick up until 2.  I was finally able to check into the hotel but had to change to a smoking floor because no non smoking rooms were available.  I went to take a shower and realized I only had 1 pair of underwear.  How, I have no idea.  I bailed on the shower and ended up going into Cleveland (since I was staying 20 min or so away) to go to mass at the Cathedral.  It was nice because it was said by the Bishop of Cleveland who said a prayer for the runners.  I was able to find a store to get some underwear and then headed to find some dinner.  Lucky me, enter Steak n Shake!!  Now, PA for some reason doesn’t believe in Steak n Shake.  Don’t know why- when I lived in Chicago, there were some and there were at least 7 on the way from Chicago to Lancaster, OH.

Anyways, after taking dinner back to the hotel, I went for a quick 2 mile run in the hotel fitness center which was ridiculously hot and humid.  Got my shower in and got my stuff together and laid out for the next day.  I got a phone call from my mom who said she was going to drive up from Lancaster (yay!) to meet up with me for the morning.  Apparently my dad was going to be mulching and planting all day and seeing me was more fun (and, they had missed me when I attempted to see them in NYC after the Broad Street Run).  I laid down to bed around 11, but never got a real good night sleep.  The walls were thin so I heard the neighbors talking the whole night and I never really felt like I fell into a complete sleep.  5 am rolls around and I get up after hitting the snooze button a few times.  I headed into Cleveland and parked in a garage about a 10 min walk from the start.  It was also where I realized I forgot my wallet which had cash/credit cards in it (apparently you need cash to get out of the parking garage- who knew?).  It was cold and misting the entire weekend and today was no different.  The start/finish was at Browns  Stadium so we at least had indoor bathrooms (wait time: 4 minutes).

I made my way to the start and we were off at 7 am.  I was doing ok and keeping with the 4:30 group but my foot felt off and something was nagging at my knee.  The first 3 miles were on Highway, not in Cleveland at all.  4-4.5  miles in I decided to switch to the half.  I just felt so off and was cramping up and didn’t want to suffer through another 22 miles.  (It was also a hint to get higher than 14 miles on training runs).  The main goal was to just get through it.  I saw a Team in Training Gorilla, a guy outside a bar dressed up like a hot dog and a few other costumes.  One of the better signs I saw was “The Kenyans are behind you!”  I was able to make it through and turned off at the 1/2 marathon split around mile 12.5.  I appreciated the marriot hotel bell hop out giving high 5s in the middle of the road.

After finishing, I met up with my mom who got to the finish right before I came across.  We walked to her car and she drove me over to where I parked (after we got on the right street) and drove to my hotel.  I was able to shower and then we relaxed for half an hour.  I was getting abdominal cramps due to that time of the month (one of the times I hate being a woman) so I was sprawled on the bed for a bit.  We checked out and headed to IHop for brunch and caught up on Lancaster OH news.

By 1, I was on the road back to Philadelphia.  It rained the whole time! I felt like I was in a fight with my windshield wipers the entire time.  At one rest stop (which I was stopping at every 65-100miles because of what long runs due to your bladder), some Pittsburgh Marathons were there and we all knew what each other were thinking.  I pulled into my apartment a little after 7 and managed to collapse on the couch for a bit.  I checked this morning and found I spent $51 in tolls round trip.  It doesn’t help 90% of drive was tolls…it’s murder!

Cleveland=bust.  Maybe it’s a sign I should run the Columbus Marathon where I can at least stay at home

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