St. Patrick’s Day 8k {race report}

The St. Patrick’s Day 8k was my one race before Boston.   The one to test my fitness level; the one to see if my training was paying off.  An 8k was not my ideal distance for a marathon goal-race but with work commitments and expos, it was the only race I could run (pre-Boston).  And while I was hoping for a shiny new PR, my real goal was to run a perfectly executed and smart race. 

I did everything right the night before: ate a healthy meal, opted out on wine, changed (most of) the clocks in the house, laid out my race outfit and pre-race meal, prepared a water bottle, called the cab, made sure my iPhone would auto time-change, set 2 alarms, and went to bed early.transition areaI set my alarm for 7:00am (with a 7:10am back-up) and arranged for the cab to arrive at 7:45am.  That would give me plenty of time to digest my food, check my bag, stand in long (porta-potty) lines, warm-up, and not feel rushed. 

I woke up at 7:57am.

Damn you, Daylight Savings Time (especially on race morning)

I woke-up feeling mad, upset, and rushed.  Thankfully, everything was prepped and ready to go.  I prefer a less-rushed morning, but I got ready in 7 minutes and still managed to get out of the door by 8:04am (the time my friend originally wanted to leave).  

The cab ride was quick and we were downtown in less than 15 minutes.  I was still a little anxious and flustered, but kept thinking “this is not the goal race, Boston is”.  (That helped a bit).  I ran into Capital Area Runners and started to feel better – I was ready for this race, even if my morning didn’t go quite as planned. 

I didn’t really have a “plan” for this race, but was thinking I should start out around 6:40/6:30 pace and see how I was feeling.  From there, I could pick it up (that’s what I was hoping for) or keep it steady at the current pace.  I felt really strong after the 1st mile – I was comfortable pushing the pace a bit – and decided I could run just a little bit faster.  It also helped to have people pushing me (my training partner, Dan) and people cheering me on (Coach George, Cheryl, Jessica and Dash).  Add another 6,000 runners, a lot of awesome St. Patrick’s Day themed costumes, and great racing weather to feel good enough to run a perfectly executed race.

Mile 1: 6:22
Mile 2: 6:32
Mile 3: 6:35
Mile 4: 6:24
Mile 0.96: 6:07Capital Area RunnerThe race had a lot of twists, turns, and tight corners (races in DC are crazy) – but I ran an 8k PR (by 3:30 minutes) and I couldn’t be more excited!  More than anything, I felt confident with my fitness level/abilities.  I felt strong and fast – a great feeling heading into my final weeks of marathon training.   

Pacers and Capital Running Company put on a great race, it was really well executed, planned and staffed.   In addition to personally having a great race, most CAR members ran PR’s, too (with a handful of AG wins!).  It was an awesome day!

Time: 32:02 (6:27 pace) + New PR
Place: 131/6000
Female: 21/3571
Age Group: 11/1039

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  1. GREAT RACE!!!!! I think you are more than ready for Boston!

  2. You had an awesome race!!! Congrats on the new PR miss speedy!

  3. Awesome!! Congrats on such a great race. I wanted to tell you that right to the end, you had amazing running form!

    PS. Sorry about the blurriness of some of the photos, I realized too late that I needed to have switched a setting on my camera to make up for the lack of sunlight on that street. 🙁 next time!! 🙂

  4. Way to go!!! You certainly sound ready to ROCK Boston!!!

  5. Awesome to read Melody! I have a 10k coming up to use for the same thing…a test to see where I’m at. I think 6:40 start would be smart but I always end up going out faster so I’ll have to try a bit here. Love your outfit. I need some Brooks arm sleeves. And what shirt are you wearing?? I might wear my green silence but I’m a little iffy about racing in them when the flows and launch are working so well…don’t want to mess with a good thing at this point in training. Hmmmmm…. Great job girl! Is anyone doing a meet up in Boston? I haven’t seen any.

  6. Congrats on the PR! You’re super speedy! Hope to see you in Boston! 🙂

  7. Holy cow! That was a fast race Ms. Speedy McFast! Nice job!

  8. yep, you are ready! congrats on the PR!

  9. great race Mel! You are going to crush Boston, seriously – great pace!

  10. Geez your time blows me away! Im over the top because I hit 9 minute mile this week!!! Erica

  11. Congrats on the PR!

  12. Wow! Congrats! You’re getting so super speedy!

  13. Congrats on your PR!!! You are ready for Boston!!

  14. I should NOT have read this post! I am ALWAYS worried about sleeping through my multiple alarms on race day and I will seriously probably have nightmares about this now after reading this! 🙂 so glad it all worked out and you still made it there okay AND were able to absolutely ROCK IT! So incredibly speedy! Congrats!

  15. Love your sunglasses! You’re so ready for Boston! I went last year and loved every second of it. Good luck!

  16. Hi! I just came across your blog and had to comment – what a great race! You are so speedy and really know what you are doing – very inspiring. I run, but I don’t know what I am doing most of the time;-) I am not running Boston (this year), but I am running the Gansett Marathon that weekend and am definitely feeling it closing in! I look forward to reading more of your blog:)

    • Hi Katie! Thanks for reading my blog – looking forward to reading more of yours too 🙂 Good luck with Gansett Marathon – 4 weeks (ahhh)

  17. Despite the rushed morning, the race turned out great with a PR no doubt. Congratulations on that! I hope that Boston proves as much the same. Cheers!

  18. Great run! Sorry I didn’t keep us slower on that first mile. Oh well. Weather was perfect, and I was glad you got settled down before the start and then just ran. Hope to see you on Sunday now that I’m back in the USA. Not anywhere near enough running this week for me. 🙁

  19. You look so speedy and fit in that picture! I love it 🙂 can’t wait for Boston – it’s going to be SOOOOOO much fun xoxo


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