Boston Run to Remember 5-Miler

Hope you all enjoyed the long weekend!

As promised, I’m back  with a recap of Sunday’s Run to Remember. This race consisted of a half marathon and 5-miler, both of which took you on a nice tour of downtown Boston. A coworker of mine had connections to the race organizer and was able to get us some free entries in exchange for volunteering. I knew it was a little close to Delaware to be hopping back into a half marathon, but I figured I would be more than OK doing 5 miles.

Boston Run to Remember 2016 | 2 Generations Running(They had this really cool photo station set up with the back-drop of Boston at the expo)

Of course, then I strained my hamstring on Thursday… I spent the days in between icing, taking ibuprofen, and resting my leg. By Sunday morning, it seemed to be feeling much better. It didn’t bother me at all walking, which was a definite improvement from Friday. I figured I would start the race conservatively, see how it felt, and potentially push the pace a bit from there.

I was glad the 90 degree temps we experienced the day before were gone, but it was actually a little chilly at the start! The race begins and ends at the Seaport World Trade Center in Boston, so there was quite a breeze off the water.

Boston's 2016 Run to Remember | 2 Generations RunningI lined up towards the middle of the pack with a few of my coworkers who were doing the half marathon (it’s a group start). Right at 7 am, we were off!

If I had really wanted to race this, I definitely would have needed to line up closer to the front. There was quite a bit of congestion as we wove through Boston’s narrow streets. I was probably running around 9:50 through that first mile, and that was just because I couldn’t find the room to go faster, even if I’d wanted to!

2016 Boston Run to Remember | 2 Generations RunningI felt really good through the first mile, so I decided to pick it up a bit. In an ideal world, I would have loved to have aimed for splits just about 20 seconds slower than my 5k pace, but I didn’t want to risk it. As it was, my competitive nature had me running faster than I probably should have.

Now, my Garmin seriously struggles with maintaining a satellite signal running in Boston, so I don’t know how accurate my mile splits are for this race. For example, at one point, I looked at my watch and it was telling me I was running a 4:45 minute pace. LOL. There’s no way in hell I was running that fast.

Mile 2- 8:22 (maybe).

Boston Run to Remember Course MapCourse Map courtesy of the Boston Run to Remember website.

Right by the Boston Common, the half marathoners split from the 5-milers. It felt like the first time in a REALLY long time that I was one of the people doing the shorter distance! Normally, I love the half marathon distance, but on Sunday, I was pretty psyched to be only doing 5 miles. I kept running, soaking in the feeling of being able to run in the middle of the streets that are normally so jam-packed with traffic when I see them during the week. The course took me through some parts of Boston that I know really well (near North Station, and around the Financial District), and then other parts I was much less familiar with. Mile 3 – 8:06 (again, not really sure I believe that).

For the last 2 miles, I tried to pick up the pace even more. I could feel my hamstring – it didn’t exactly hurt, but it wasn’t normal either. I focused on runners up ahead of me and just concentrated on picking them off, one by one. Maybe I had just started too far back in the pack, but I definitely had a lot more speed left in me than the runners in my vicinity. Mile 4 – 7:00 according to Garmin, but this was in a section right around the Financial District with some seriously tall buildings, so I’m guessing that’s 15-30 seconds off from my true pace.

In the last mile, we headed back into the Seaport District, with a nice downhill. There were a decent number of spectators along this stretch and all the cheering was a nice change from the rest of Boston which was extremely quiet on this cool and cloudy Sunday morning.

Boston Run to Remember 2016 I could see the finish line and all the American flags in the distance, and I continued to push hard, passing some more runners in the last half mile. Mile 5 – 7:32 by Garmin, 6:47 by Strava, so maybe my true pace was somewhere in between? Either way, a solid effort for my last mile.

After crossing the finish line, all the runners were funneled back into the Seaport World Trade Center where they had TONS of post-race food, vendors, and bag check. Considering it was such a cool morning, it was kind of nice to be back indoors where it was warm. They had a great variety of food and my absolute favorite – chocolate milk!! Haha, I was so happy to have it especially since I never got my chocolate milk after Delaware. It’s definitely the little things in life. 🙂

I hung out for a while, and finally checked my results. My official time was 41:25, which comes out to an average pace of 8:17/mile. I was also 31 out of 499 runners in my age group! If I had been 100% uninjured, I think I could have done better, but given the circumstances, I’m happy. I think this gives me a good sense of my baseline and how I can work to improve for the half marathons I have coming up later this summer (*Hint – my mom and I have another state planned!!!)

Boston Run to RememberThe medals were also really cool at this race – The circular piece in the middle is actually a “coin” that is magnetized to fit into the medal itself. They had different coins to represent Police and Fire.

Overall, this was an awesome race – very well-organized, great expo, and a cool course that did a great job highlighting the city of Boston.


Looking Ahead

Happy Tuesday everyone!

I am feeling really optimistic and excited about this week. Something about the weather finally warming up and having the flexibility to do all the workouts and runs I want. I liked the structure of my marathon training plan, but it got to the point where I almost got sick of doing the runs because they felt forced. Like I had to try to stick as closely to the plan as possible or else. Now that Delaware is behind me, I’m excited to play around with some speed work and really get back into cross-training.

I also have a few shorter races already on the calendar!

Run All the Races Meme(Current mood.)

First up, is the Boston Run To Remember 5-Miler this Sunday. I’ve never actually run a 5-mile race before, so yay for an automatic PR!!! I’m looking forward to pushing myself on this one(within reason – no more trips to the ER anytime soon!). I really want to work on my speed this summer, so I think this could be a good race to just gauge where I’m at.

The following weekend, my mom and I will be running the AIDS Walk and Run 5k Boston. The course is right along the Charles, in an area where I sometimes run after work. It’s a really beautiful area, as evidenced by this photo I took a few months ago.SunsetAnd then of course, there is the Runner’s World Classic in July!!!! I know I mentioned that I would be running the half marathon here a few weeks ago. Well, surprise!! I’m actually doing the Hat Trick! For those of you who aren’t familiar with Runners World events, the Hat Trick refers to running all 3 of the races they offer over the weekend – the 5k and 10k on Saturday, and then the half marathon on Sunday! This will be my first time ever trying the whole 3 races in 2 days thing, and I’m psyched. I have to admit though, I don’t think that this will realistically lead to a new half marathon PR, which I had originally been hoping to go for. I haven’t really figured out what I want my strategy to be for the weekend – Do I try to race the 5k or the 10k? Or should I take both of those easy and be more aggressive on the half? Thoughts, anyone?

My mom and I are also toying with the idea of a race in late August that would cross off another state for us… We haven’t finalized any plans there though, so I’ll keep you posted. 🙂

Couple of reminders – If you’re looking for a new hydration belt for summer, I highly recommend the SPIBelt H2O Venture Series (Read my review for all the details here). Use code nora10 at checkout for 10% off and free shipping from spibelt.com!

If you’re local (or even if you’re not) and interested in running the 5k, 10k, or half marathon at the Runner’s World Classic you can still sign up! Use code RAVE at checkout for 10% off.

Have a great week!