Tag Archives: 10k

Hershey 10k 2015 (Race Recap)

6 May

Well hello there!  I realize I haven’t posted in well over a month. That’s because, frankly, there hasn’t been much to say! Since I live in central Pennsylvania I’ve just been running on the treadmill a lot to try to gear up for my spring race plans. But now that the spring is here I’ve got a few race recaps lined up for you! It feels so good to be out running in the running community again. December-March can be a bit rough since I’m a long distance junkie and the weather around those months isn’t very conducive to local long distance running.  I have been pretty active on instagram though so hopefully you follow me over there for more frequent updates/cat photos.

All that being said, here’s my race recap for my first race of 2015 – the Hershey 10k in Hershey, PA!  I have run this race twice before, PRing in 2013, and thenjust taking it easy in 2014.  I love this race because it is a nice size – not to small but not too big, and a quick drive from home for me.  Packet pickup is always a breeze (I do it the night before but I know they have it the morning of too), and parking is never an issue since the start and finish is located at the stadium at Hershey Park – so there is tons of parking, that is free for the runners!

flatrunnerSince this race is in mid-april it usually requires a long-sleeved something. This year I went with capris, a short sleeved shirt and arm warmers so that I could pull them off if I got warm (I didn’t). It was going to be in the mid 40s to low 50s during the race.

The morning of the race I got up bright and early, checked out of my hotel and headed to Hershey Park.

There was very little traffic because I got there about an hour before it started. I’m one of those people that prefers to be way early than even close to late. 😉

I had no goals for this race. My plan was to do 3/1 run/walk intervals since that is how I had been training for my spring half marathons. This was just going to be another training run with a ton of other runners and fun scenery!

Since I have run this race previously I know the course like the back of my hand. It’s a loop around the huge parking lot then up along Hersheypark Drive, behind the outlets next door and then a fun bit through the park itself before exiting the park and heading up the parking lot and into HersheyPark Stadium.

It is a fun course but it is hilly. There are rolling hills almost constantly as well as some longer inclines. Knowing this I planned to take it easy on the uphills and conserve energy, walking if I needed to if I was in a run interval, and then kick it into high gear on the downhills. This is a strategy that I’ve used in the past that really seems to work for me though it may seem a bit unusual. I’m able to make up the slowed pace of the uphills on the downhills pretty consistently.

I also told myself that I wasn’t allowed to switch my watch to see my overall time/pace until I hit the 5k mark. I can sometimes get obsessed with the minute by minute readings and then mentally defeat myself if something isn’t perfect. Since I was planning to do this like a training run and had no time goals I figured this would reduce any expectations.

Before the race started it getting quite windy so I was happy I had my arm warmers. I went to put my headphones in after the national anthem and realized one of my ear bud covers had fallen off at some point, making them too small to fit in my ears. I was bummed out, but reminded myself that with the wind and lack of music I’d just have to go with the flow.

Right on time, we were off. I started up my run/walk intervals and just payed attention to each interval at a time and focused on walking quickly during the walk breaks. At the 5k mark I switched my watch to see my overall time for the first time in the race and realized that I was at about 36:00. I started doing the math and realized that if I kept it up I could potentially PR this thing. But I tried not to get wrapped up in it and switched back to the interval screen on my watch and just told myself to “keep  moving.” Around mile 5 I looked at my watch again – exactly an hour. I know I was going to PR this because there was no way it would take my 18 minutes to do the last 1.2 miles. But I also knew there were some pretty significant uphills coming so I switched back the view on my watch and continued on, taking in the scenery of the park and the weather that was turning into perfect running weather.

At 5.5 I switched back my watch for the final time, to show overall pace/distance. I figured at this point I wouldn’t get in my head and defeat myself since a PR was almost a definite.

Sure enough I saw the finish line, gave it my all and crossed in 1:14:47.



A four minute PR (to the second!) from 2 years ago. I was so thrilled and shocked and happy! I was not planning to PR this race, especially knowing the course and with the wind but it happened!! I decided I HAD to wait in line and get a finishers photo to celebrate the PR!



I am not sure what contributed to the PR but I suspect it has something to do with the GRIT classes I am taking at the gym, honing on a good run/walk combination for myself, and maybe, finally, getting a handle on my mental game when things feel tough.

But whatever the reason, an unexpected PR is really one of the best! 🙂

Hershey 10k 2014 (Race Recap)

28 Apr

On April 13th I ran the Hershey 10k for the second time! (First time recap is here.)

For a little background, in 2011 I ran the Hershey Half Marathon – and thanks to the “fun” rolling hills, it was really rough. I decided never again. However last year when I saw the 10k advertised I decided to give Hershey another chance. 🙂 I trained for it and managed to PR, so overall my experience was pretty great!

This year I signed up for the 10k again. It is a well organized race, that is pretty close to where I live, and super fun.

I drove to Hershey the night before the race to pick up my race packet. This year they had LONG SLEEVED TECH SHIRTS – heck yea! (Last year it was just a cotton long sleeved). Packet pickup at this race is always super easy and parking for it (and the race itself) is a non issue. Then I hit up Chocolate World and the nearby outlets for some shopping before checking into my hotel and falling asleep.

The next morning I woke up, checked out of the hotel and drove to the Hershey Park Stadium for the race. I got there way early (because that’s just what I do..) so I went to the restroom (there are real restrooms in the stadium which is awesome!), ate my Sport Beans, and got a picture with a Hershey Kiss!

Hershey 10k 2014 (1)

Side note: do you know how weird it is to pose with a Hershey’s Kiss? Where do you put your arms since their bottom half is so wide? haha. Instead I just decided to jazz hand it up.

The race started at 7:30, and since the crowd is (relatively) small-ish for this one, I crossed the start shortly there after.

The first three miles are through a parking lot, and the hills hit you right away. I had forgotten how hilly this course was! After the parking lot you head around the outlets, which is a bit more scenic, before heading into the park around mile four. Going into the park totally makes up for the boring first couple of miles. It’s so fun to run around the water park, through back access roads and under roller coasters. The folks working at Hershey Park are all out and clapping and cheering too which is awesome. Though I will say, the hills pretty much continue the whole way though.

Hershey 10k 2014 (2)

The last hill is climbing back up to the stadium to loop around it and enter it for a sprint across the finish line.

Within the first few miles my legs were feeling a bit tired so I made the decision to just enjoy myself. My finishing time was 1:22:58. Honestly I don’t know how I managed to PR last year! Those hills were crazy! But overall, I really enjoyed this race for the 2nd year in a row – PR or not – and I hope to be back!
Hershey 10k 2014 (3)

Hershey 10k 2013 (Race Report)

15 Apr

Happy Marathon Monday! I’m checking in to tell you all about my race yesterday at the Hershey 10k! Spoiler: I PRed!!! And I totally have the new PR glow still today. 🙂

As you know if you’ve been reading a while. 10ks (used to) scare the crap out of me. I couldn’t figure out how to pace myself the right way so I wasn’t in pain the entire time, and I mentally defeated myself when it came to the distance. I’ve run three before, and this year I decided I was going to focus on the 10k, and not only become more comfortable running that distance, but also PR. I know it sounds silly that I would be scared to run a 10k since I have done a bunch of 5ks, halfs and a marathon, but honestly I just never knew how to run it the right way.

My goal race, the Hershey 10k was yesterday. The race started at 7:30am, but not before I got a photo with the chocolate bar. 🙂hershey10k-1

I have run the Hershey Half Marathon before so I was comfortable with running a race in that location logistics-wise. But I was nervous because I had a time goal, and I knew the course would be a little hilly.

As I mentioned on Friday, I used TazRunning.com to figure out my mile splints for a 1:15:00 finish and a 1:17:00 finish. My goal was to finish somewhere in there. But really, anything less than 1:19:34 would make me a happy camper.

Okay back to the race.

Someone said “go” and we were off. I was somewhere in the middle of the cluster of runners, and luckily we were chip timed at the start and finish so my official time was the same as my Garmin.

Mile 1: 11:49. A little fast, I was aiming for 12:01-12:21. But there was a good amount of downhill so I focused on going slower on the flat parts to not tire out.
Mile 2: 12:44, overall at 24:33. Still in my goal of 24:07-24:45. But slow for an overall mile time. This is where the hills started though. The course was also not that exciting at this point (just running through a parking lot and on a road). I continued to focus on going faster on the few downhills (while still trying to let gravity do the work), to make up for my slowness on the uphills.
Mile 3: 12:42, overall 37:14. Still on target for 1:17, but the 1:15 wasn’t going to happen unless there was a miracle. I still felt really good physically and mentally though. When I had doubts, I pushed them out of my head quickly. I stayed focused on keeping my legs moving and focused on the next mile split that I needed to hit.
Mile 4: 12:55, overall 50:09. Starting to lose a grip on the 1:17 and I was getting tired of the hills that just kept coming. But I stayed positive and continued to focus.
Mile 5: 13:44, overall 1:03:53. Yikes. Not the splits I wanted to see for this mile. We were in Hershey Park at this point and again the hills killed my time. But I knew I could still pull out a PR. I just had to keep going.
Mile 6: 13:39, overall 1:17:32.
Last .2: 1:14 (10:55 pace, I hit an 8:02 somewhere in there).

For the last half mile or so I decided to gun it. I WAS going to get that PR dammit. I turned the corner into Hershey Park Stadium, saw the finish and gave it everything I had left.

I finished in 1:18:47! A New PR! And miraculously, my official results match my garmin results to the second!

My splits weren’t what I had hoped, so I’m a little bummed about that. But a PR is a PR! I felt so good and strong during the majority of the race. I’m pretty confident that had the course been a little flatter I could have gotten that 1:17.

Even more importantly though, I have so much more confident in my ability to run the 10k distance now! The training plan provided to me by Jen helped me so much! I can’t recommend her enough!

Who knows, maybe I’ll run a 10k again in the near future. 🙂


Friday Fitness Recap – April 12 + 10k Race Prep

12 Apr

This week was the last week of my 10k plan! It’s hard to believe that race day is on Sunday.

Saturday – 4 miles in Baltimore (54:30)
Sunday –  Rest
Monday – 4 miles on the treadmill (55:27)
Tuesday – 3 easy miles on the treadmill (43:34)
Wednesday – Kickboxing! (1 hour)
Thursday – Rest
Friday – 3 easy miles on the treadmill (41:13)

Total miles: 16
Total time: 4.25 hrs

I’m leaving tomorrow mid-day to drive to Hershey with my friend for the 10k on early Sunday. I’m feeling pretty confident and excited. I created a playlist last night just for the race, and ran the first half of it this morning during an easy 3 mile run to see how it felt.

I also printed out my mile splints for a 1:17:00 and 1:15:00 finish. I used this really cool site – Taz Running which actually lets you find your race and then enter your goal time. They then adjust your splits based on the elevation chart! The Hershey 10k was actually not listed when I searched for it, but I emailed them asking them to add it and it was added within an hour! Super impressive!

hershey10kgoalsplitsA 1:17:00 finish would be a 1:30 PR, 1:15:00 would be a 4:30 PR. I’m hoping for at least that 1:17:00 . 🙂 I’m under strict instructions to push the pace if I feel good, so we will see I guess!

I doubt I’ll be checking in before the race, so I hope you have a great weekend!

A little brag

26 Mar

Just checking in quickly for a little bragging today. This morning I got up at 5am again and got on the treadmill. I felt much more energetic than I did yesterday! I banged out 6 miles with four 1/2 mile speedy chunks at 11:36, 11:34, 11:34 and 11:20 pace. I spent my cool-down mile building up to a strong sprint for the last .2. I really like ending my runs with some fast running and using up any energy I have left.

In the end I did 6 miles in 1:17:41.

ImageWhile this may be slow for some, I was psyched. If I hit that time in the 10k in a few weeks I will get a nice new shiny PR! I feel pretty confident in my ability to do this now. Just gotta keep sticking with my training plan and stay confident until race day!