Race Report : CWRRC Spring Classic 5K

A little house keeping. I meant to have this posted this morning, now with the events of Boston I fear it’ll look insensitive to post. However, I think there’s a compromise of sending love and prayers to those effected and not allowing fear to stop and overtake what we all work so hard for each and every day. I will post my race report, because in a small way I want to prove as a community we won’t be broken.

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Sunday was the Cleveland West Road Runner’s Club (CWRRC) Spring Classic 10 miler and 5K road race. The CWRRC hold a fall and spring race at Bonnie Park in Strongsville, OH every year. I believe this was the 41st annual! It used to be a 5K and half marathon for both, but the 1/2 slowly became less and less popular in the spring and it was eventually switched to the 10 mile option. I like the spring race because they sponsor countless Cleveland kids to come run and I LOVE listening to them all. They encourage and push each other with such great spirit. Watching the kids I remember what it is I love about this sport and it always takes me back to the basics. Many people complain because the race field is “littered” with kids, but I have found my way around, through, and next to them over the years.

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I parked at the RTA stop about a 1/2 mile up the road and walked over to the pavilion. I ALWAYS forget the one MAJOR downfall of the events is despite being pre-registered shirts are first come first serve and I have lost out on a great shirt time and time again. This year they were white and short sleeve, Race Ready brand, with a picture on the front of green and yellow flowers. Pretty, but nothing I’m losing sleep over.

I wore my white Zensah socks, my Saucony Guide 6s, Zensah compression shorts under my Running Skirts pants, an UnderArmour racer-back bra, Champion C9 shirt and Asics jacket. After stopping at the bathroom and walking around a little I stopped for pictures with Gale and of Gale and Kristin.

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They were both running the 10 miler. I don’t know if Kristin is training for anything, but I know Gale is working toward her 2nd Mohican 50 Miler next month? Or maybe it’s June. At any rate she’s going after miles wit every fiber of her being. It’s impressive and scary at the same time. At 900 they moved over to the start line and I snapped a few more pictures before and as they were taking off. It was a little chilly, which is often perfect racing weather. The Classics are very flat and fast courses, but they are also very boring to some. The 5K goes out about a mile before turning into a parking lot area (The Chalet) then turns back on itself in essentially an out and back. The 10 miler goes out the same way then keeps going on a few more miles before heading back to make a 5 mile loop and then repeats the process.

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Then it was time for my event about 15 minutes later. I prepped my music and tucked my phone into “God’s pocket” aka my sports bra and readied myself for whatever would happen next.

As the alarm went off I began to jog. To my surprise everything felt good. I kept a quick turnover and my legs directly under me as best as possible. I tried to concentrate on my posture and foot strike. Mile 1 went by just under 11 minutes and I was still feeling good. I tried to speed it up a little, but didn’t want to go out too hard. My only goal was to finish pain free. Around mile 1.5 there was water and I enjoyed the coolness way too much for my own good. I walked slightly at this section, then picked it back up to catch up with the backs I was previously so familiar with for the last 15 minutes.

I was feeling warm, but couldn’t risk slowing down to mess with my jacket. Counting paces in my head and trying to focus on the music was getting more and more difficult. I made mental checks on how my leg/hamstring/whatever felt and knew it wasn’t too painful. My feet were going numb, but I knew it was a combination of tight muscles and my shoes are becoming well loved.

People behind me were starting to prep up for the final mile as we went past the marker for mile 2. I heard one say to the other “We have a choice to make. Do we want to let tutu beat us?” referring to a very tall woman up ahead of me in a sparkling purple running skirt (not a tutu though). I rolled my eyes to myself and kept my mouth shut. For me the kick in at the end is always the most difficult. It’s tempting to start walking and it’s often hard to claim your spot on the walking track section. I could hear the finish line cheers, since my headphones had fallen out. I couldn’t spend any extra energy to fix them though and kept pumping my arms. There was a group of us fighting for the end and I out-kicked a few people (including “tutu”, who I thought was cute and doing a great job). When I saw my final time was under 35, but over 32 I was both happy and bummed. I’d love to get back under 30, but since my 5 by the 5th was what 45 or so I was thrilled with the time of 34 minutes!

Official time 34:18.  8 of 13 females age 25-29. 144 out of 298 total.

I ran up to the woman who punched it better than I could and said “I have to know your age group!” She laughed, as did her friends, and her bib announced she was 44. Phew. Safe.

I didn’t place, but I did have an AMAZING time. I stuck around a few more minutes to get pictures of Kelli, Gale, and Kristin as they passed their first loop of the 10 miler. Then I ate a really crisp and juicy and cold Red Delicious apple on the way to my car.

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How was your weekend?

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