Capital City Classic 10K Race Report- {Officially} Breaking the 40 minute mark!

Capital City Classic 10K Race Report- {Officially} Breaking the 40 minute mark!

I went into this race with a very specific goal- to break 40 minutes.  I ran in this race two years ago (actually just a few  days before I got pregnant with Ashton). At that time I my goal was to beat my 10K PR- one I had set when I was 17 years old- 41:42.  I finished in 41:43 just 1 second shy of my goal.  The Capital City Classic course is fast, flat and I knew I had a good shot at breaking 40 based on my recent unofficial 10K track run in February.

Pre Race:
Going into the race I had a pretty light running week.  After my 15 miler last Saturday I stepped back on the mileage.  I really wanted to PR and that doesn’t happen on tired legs.  Now that I’m not in marathon training mode I don’t feel guilty about mileage weeks in the 30’s or 40’s.  All week my runs ranged from 6-7 miles.  I know, doesn’t sound like much after months of marathon training but my body has welcomed the lower mileage. I did 6 x 800’s Tuesday for my speed work and that was it.  I also took yesterday completely off.  My legs were ready to race today!

I wanted to get to the course by 7:15 so I’d have time to pick up my number, warm-up at least 2 miles and use the bathroom.  We live a good hour away from where the race was located in Little Rock so when we didn’t leave our house until after 6:30 I knew we were cutting it close! I know I could have gone on my own but John really likes making my races a family event when at all possible.  John and the kids can’t go to every race with me but when it’s within an hour from our house we try to make it work.  It just takes a while loading up 6 people with jackets, snacks, diaper bag, etc.  I put the kids to bed wearing the clothes they would be wearing today so that helped a little.

Anyway… John dropped me off while he found a parking spot.  Parking is crazy there and it took me a mile to jog to the registration table to pick up my number.  Then I found a port-a-potty and put my number on while I waited in line.  I was able to run a little more before lining up.  I only did 1.5 mile warm-up instead of 2 but that was all that time would allow.  The race did not use chip timing so I made sure to get as close to the front of the line as possible.  The race director announced that this was the biggest crowd they’d had in over 10 years.  There were over 800 runners, including a few elite runners so I knew the competition was going to be tough.  I tried to block out all the people and I focused on pacing strategy.

The Race:
Mile 1- 6:22.  Perfect.  I didn’t want to start out too fast. I knew it would be a fast start but I wanted to be conservative the first half.

Finishing Mile 1 and smiling at John with 4 kids in tow cheering for their mama

Mile 2- 6:28.  A tad slower than I would have liked (needed to average 6:25) but I knew I had to get in the groove.  Mile 2 is almost always my slowest mile.

Mile 3- 6:22.  I passed the 4th place female at this point and I was feeling really good.  At the 5K mark I was at a 19:50- something. Half way done!

Mile 4- 6:21.  Passed a few more guys but never saw the women in front of me. Still feeling strong and in control of my race.

Mile 5- 6:19.  My body was starting to get tired and I hoped I had enough kick left to maintain a sub 6:30 pace.  I knew it would be close since my Garmin mileage was a little off. Don’t you love doing the mental math at the end of a race?!

Mile 6- 6:18.  I don’t know how this was my fastest mile.  I was worried it would be too slow so I kept picking up the pace.  This race has a great finish stretch so I imagined myself doing my 800’s at the track and I told myself I could do this. I just counted down the laps of the track in my head.

Mile 6.27- 1:36 (5:54 avg.). I passed one more guy on this last stretch and sprinted as fast as I could! I saw the clock read 39:xx and I wanted to get it in under 40.

Kicking it in to the finish line!

I crossed the line at 39:48.  (Official race time.)  I did it!! Thank you, God!!! My race average was a 6:25.  (My Garmin had my average at 6:21 but you know how that goes… I was prepared for the time difference since I am not so good at running tangents.)

I was the 4th woman overall.  Next year I am going for Top 3! I will need to break 39 to do that.  Seriously.  The overall women’s finishing time was 34:58.  Second place was 36:21 and third was 39:01.  I did win first in my age division and I won a pretty cool prize.  The race director’s daughter had painted a canvas and had prints made.  Pretty cool!

Great picture!

Post Race Thoughts:
All in all, great race! I am happy to have executed my racing plan.  I think I will be a little more aggressive in my next 10K and not hold back so much.  My splits were pretty even but anytime I negative split I wonder if I could have pushed myself just a few seconds faster. I am not planning on racing a 10K until July so I guess we’ll have to wait and see…

This does make me want to race another half soon.  According to McMillan Pace Calculator (yes, I’ve already punched in today’s race times!) I should be able to run a 1:28 half.  I am really ready to break 1:30 this year.  This race actually moves my marathon time to a 3:06 which sounds CRAZY to me but I know I’ve got potential to improve.  I know I just need to keep working hard and it will pay off when the time is right.

Next up… Race pics by Abi.  This is what happens when daddy hands the camera to a 7 year-old.  I am actually quite impressed!

Pretty day in Arkansas
Making his I’m-not-so-sure-about-smiling face
View of Anna by the finish
It was a gorgeous day!
Up close and personal with Anna
ASHTON!!!
My official race photographer. ๐Ÿ™‚

25 thoughts on “Capital City Classic 10K Race Report- {Officially} Breaking the 40 minute mark!

  1. Tia! Way to go!! So inspiring. I also love what you said about not feeling bad about logging 30-40 mile weeks. I feel like I may need to downshift after my next marathon (6 weeks), but I am feeling a tad guilty. Good to know that other “faster” runners do it and do fine.

    Cute pictures of your kiddos too!

    1. It is hard to adjust once you’ve been used to logging in so many miles. It took me about a month to get over but I am focusing on speed and some shorter races and it’s actually kind of nice. I figure I might as well fine tune some of my other distance events since I’m not marathon training… ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Hot DOG!!!! That is impressive!! I always have mental math troubles with the 10k, hence not breaking 40 yet. You, lady, have done VERY well. Not surprised after your track time trial performance, though. It must feel great to get the official time on the record ๐Ÿ™‚

    I have a VERY strong hunch that that sub 1:30 half is yours soon! And I bet you’d be under 3:10 for a flat marathon too, Tia.

    Little Abi took some great photos. Happy Easter!

    1. Thanks Raina. You are so close! I actually re-read through some of your old posts from late summer when you were racing 10K’s. I am probably wording this all wrong but I liked the part of one when you said you would love to pursue racing even more but not at the expense of family and your faith. Do you remember writing something along those lines. Basically, we are at a time in our lives when our family needs us and running is something we enjoy but not our lives. I know you will break 40 soon but I admire you for keeping your priorities straight and for your great attitude even when you fell just a few seconds short of your goal.

      I will need to take some pointers for breaking 1:30 in the half! That is my next big goal!

    2. Aw, thanks. My eyes are watering now. ๐Ÿ™‚ Oh, yes. I remember.

      I know you’ll break that 1:30 – probably in the next shot. I think course makes a huge difference. It helps to run a course you know already. At least it helped me. Honestly, I think you have it NOW.

  3. What a great job you did with your pacing. And how fast are you!!! Sub-40 is smoking. Can’t wait to hear about your half marathon plans.

  4. Wow, Tia! What an amazing race! 10k’s are my least favorite distance… those last two miles are killer. Congratulations on breaking 40 minutes and your first place in your age group!!

    1. Thanks Kathy! I know you can do it. Keep training hard and stick to a realistic pacing strategy. Pacing right has made all the difference for me in my last few races.

  5. So awesome! Just found your blog and I’m already inspired to try and be speedier. How tall are you? Just curious because you’ve got some serious kick in that picture. I always blame my short stride on my shortness (5’2″), but I might need to rethink that.

    1. Hi there! I’m actually not that tall. I’m 5’2 1/2. So sometimes I just round it up to 5’3″! I married a man 6’4″ so maybe our children have a shot at being tall… : )

      Thanks for checking out my blog!

  6. I just discovered your blog a few weeks ago. Wow you are wicked fast! I’m also a runner who loves running and racing. I gave birth to my son in January of 2011. I didn’t realize how hard it would be to train during that first year. You are a stud! Thank you for giving me a reality check that it takes hard work to get back into shape.

    1. Hi Dolly! Our boys are the same age then. Aren’t they into EVERYTHING right now?!! ๐Ÿ™‚

      You are right about the hard work. I spent most of the summer and fall getting myself back into shape and it was VERY humbling! Anyway… thanks for checking out my blog!

    1. Thank you! Finding the time is probably the hardest part of it all. I definitely have the will but it’s arranging my runs around my husband’s schedule. Fortunately, he is very supportive and had a little bit of flex time early in the morning so we make it work.

      Thanks again!! ๐Ÿ™‚

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