This year, Broad Street wasn’t about my running my fastest. After PRing in the half marathon this February, I haven’t trained as consistently over the past few months. Life has gotten away from me, and small things have popped up here and there. I am still in shape, but am I in PRing shape? No. That’s okay, and you can’t be in peak performance all of the time.
Anyway, this year Broad Street was about my finishing happy. I DNSed last year because I was burned out. I could have run, but I would have been miserable. I knew I had made the right decision when I spectated the end and had no sadness at all.
This year I was determined to finish healthy, happy, and with a smile.
I did all of that and even had a consistent and solid race.
Each year, both my dad and my father in law come up for Broad Street. Both are avid runners, and my dad has been running far longer than I have. Everything up to race day went without a hitch. My dad got my bib at the Convention center. We got to the stadiums around 6 and made it to the start line around 7.
I was seeded bib F143. I tried to use the “seeded bathrooms”, but the volunteer told me my bib was too high (I.E., I was too slow). There wasn’t really a point for me to be seeded I guess. I started exactly where I did when I ran every other year in the red coral.
I didn’t have time to wait again to use the bathroom, and when you are surrounded by 40,000 other people, there isn’t anywhere to go. I rarely start any race having to use the bathroom, but I didn’t have a choice. I respect that there were faster athletes, but it didn’t make it easier to start a race needing to use the bathroom.
The race started right at 8 am, and we were off. I told myself 1,000 times to run my race. Time didn’t matter, but finishing happy and strong did. I wasn’t sure what I was capable of. I thought faster than the 1:05s I ran a few years ago but slower than my PR of 1:01.59.
My plan was just run my own race. I saw many people I knew storm by me, but I was in my own world. The first mile of Broad Street always gets out fast anyway. I ran a 6:15 and I thought, I think that’s half marathon PR pace but I would not be able to sustain that.
I saw a couple of friends during the second mile that zoomed by me. I thought, dang I’ve run fast in races with them before, and they are just floating by. No big deal though. The next few miles went without much excitement. I ran a 6:15, 6:16, 6:15.
By the time I knew it, we were doing the one turn in the entire race, around City Hall. That is when I saw a few people in front, I knew I was going to reel in. The humidity had started to get to me. It was forecasted to rain during Broad Street but never did. The weather had spiked over the week from 40 to 60 and humid. I wasn’t as prepared for it. It was by no means bad weather, but was it wasn’t whether we were accustomed too!
Around city hall, I saw my good friend and coworker (thanks TJ) which motivated me. The small turn in the race makes mile 5 fly by. I think it breaks up the course well and by the time you know it, you’re over halfway done. I ran mile 5 in 6:19.
During the next few miles, I focused on reeling people in. It gave me the motivation to keep plugging along. I hit mile 6 in 6:10 and mile 7 in 6:11. I didn’t purposely run faster, I just did.
The heat and humidity hit me during the next few miles. I was still enjoying myself, high fiving kids, etc. but I did not feel “on top of the world”. My stomach was in knots because of the heat. I always take Gatorade/electrolyte aid on course for anything more than a 10k. I had been taking the on-course aid.
The last three miles, I traded back and forth with local runner Bryan. I recognized him from other races, and we later chatted afterward. Around mile 7, I told myself, my goal was to run under 63. Not a race PR but still a strong race for me. I just needed to hold on.
The last 3 miles were a bit of a blur. I ran as fast as my legs would take me. My legs never felt great, or loose during the race but they didn’t feel awful either. Finally, we hit the Navy Yard at 9.75, and I began smiling. I knew I was almost home and almost done.
I powered to the finish and actually passed someone! (In case you don’t know, I have the world’s worst kick). I crossed in 1:02.51 and 35th female overall. Apparently, I was beaming after the race and don’t even remember this.
I’m happy with how Broad Street went. It wasn’t my fastest or my slowest, but I was able to run a strong and consistent race. I smiled the entire way. It was nice to see so many friends along the course as well as after. Even in a 40,000 person race you always see someone! Both my father and father in law had great races as well.
Questions for you:
What is the biggest race you’ve run?
Have you ever raced a 10 miler?