Richmond 8K 2019 Race Report

My action shots from MarathonFoto are so awful, so there aren’t many photos to share. But I had a really great race, despite it being only my 2nd in the last 9 months. The others were Al Gordon in February where I was sick, then a tuneup 5K last weekend. And of course, many months of being injured in between. I’m so glad this was my comeback! I was hemming and hawing about doing the half in Richmond but knew that I wouldn’t PR and didn’t feel extra ready for the distance as my long runs had dropped off since mid-October. Plus, by the time I signed up, the half cost $100 and the 8K was only $40. Done!

After flying in Thursday night and going to bed at the late hour of 11pm, I skipped doing a shakeout on Friday. After picking up my packet, I ate way too much at ZZQ, Richmond’s new Texas-style BBQ joint. Then I had some pasta for dinner and slept poorly until my 5am wakeup call. The 8K went off right at 7am, so I hopped out for a 1 mile warmup and settled into the corrals. Times under 48 minutes were Corral 1, and I was shooting for 43. My previous 5 mile best time was 43:28 and I was pretty sure I could get this under an 8:43 pace.

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Those Splits tho

I met a fellow NYC-er in the corrals and we chatted for 5 minutes, then we were off! I took it out a smidge too fast then got concerned on mile two (plus that mile had the most elevation increase). Then after the turn onto Mulberry and move to Grace Street came the cobblestones. At one point, my foot got temporarily lodged into one and I stumbled. That was a real adrenaline rush and I recovered then was able to speed it up on the fourth mile. Then came the real downhills. I remembered the finish from running the Richmond Marathon two years ago and loved it again.

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Flying downhill

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PR Victory!

I was done by 7:43 and met my parents at the post-finish party. I rang the PR bell, ate a banana and my Dad kindly purchased me some Richmond gear to warm me up until we got back to the car. My pockets are bulging with the snacks I took at the end, though I skipped the Papa John’s pizza this time.

Then I met up with college girlfriends and we ate amazing food at Perch.

If my lottery entries for Berlin and NYC in 2020 are both no-gos, then I am strongly considering running the Richmond full again. I recommend their race series to everyone.

Richmond 2019 Training

This post originally titled Richmond Half 2019 Training and was supposed to cover everything in September, but then I never published it in September. Or October. My running has been pretty good (some weeks higher in mileage than others) but I’ve kept my weekend long runs right around 10 miles for the most part.  Essentially, I feel like I could run a half at any time, but I couldn’t hit a PR. I got medical clearance from my doctor and PT to run a half this fall/winter (but not a full marathon, which is fine). But the consistency of training never really happened. So I’m just going to do the 8K in Richmond on 11/16/19.

I moved out of Brooklyn in September and have been exploring Central Park a lot more. There are so many paths and trails and things to see (namely waterfalls) off the main 6-mile path. My goal is to run them all, plus run the entire perimeter of the park on 5th Avenue and Central Park South/West/North. It’s a lot easier to get to the many NYRR and other races in Central Park now, so I’ve popped by to cheer on friends or pace long runs.

In late September, I did a Tracksmith-sponsored long run in Rockefeller Park State Preserve and loved hitting the trails. The hills were killer, but I stayed steady and on the slower side. Obviously I wore Tracksmith.


I went to Chicago in mid-October to spectate the marathon (for the third time in four years) and see friends from across the country and eat deep dish pizza. I ran a Nike-sponsored 4×800 race at Soldier Field and was pleased enough with my time. If anything, it made me want to get back to the track a bit more. In my injury-prone state, I haven’t been doing much speed work. Also, our team met Colleen Quigley!


Fall by the numbers:

Longest long run: 11 miles

Fastest speed: I hit 10 mph (a 6:00 minute mile) for maybe a minute during a Barry’s Bootcamp treadmill session and didn’t die or fly off the treadmill

I ran my first race since February, a 5K on Randall’s Island in 26:26, about 90 seconds off my PR.

I ran in Saratoga Springs NY, Chicago IL, and San Juan Puerto Rico.

Plus, I went to a driving range for the first time in over a decade, got into sourdough bread baking, am a happy owner of a Theragun, and kept up eating delicious stuff all over town (and other places).

Lunch specials at Cho Dang Gol
Piña colada and red snapper in Old San Juan
Deep dish pizza and the best salad at Lou Malnati’s in Chicago
Apple cider donuts upstate
Waiting for seafood boil

Week 5 of NYC Marathon Training

This post is late because I was attending a work training for 2 days. I now have a White Belt in Lean Six Sigma and actually have thought about how to apply some of my newfound process improvement skills toward marathon training (namely, morning runs). Look out, world!

Monday 8/15: Red-eye back from Vegas was rough, so I slept until 11am then napped in the afternoon. Meant to get a run in but didn’t. Still had some desert sand on me from the hike.


Tuesday 8/16: My usual snooze struggles were coupled with a touch of jet lag. I brought my running gear to the rock climbing gym but ended up just climbing for several hours. I completed my first 5.7 (and then my second) and tried a couple of 5.8s that I did not summit.

Wednesday: The final Al Goldstein Summer Speed Series 5K. I wanted to try for even splits of 8:20-8:30 but had some digestive unrest for the first mile, so hit 8:55 (this mile has the big hill, too), then sped up to 8:15 for the second (mostly downhill) mile and was feeling great. I saw some teammates ahead and hung back for a while before passing them in the last 250 meters then sprinted it in for a barely sub-8 final mile. I don’t think I’ve seen a sub-8 mile on my Garmin since I raced the Fifth Avenue Mile last year. The last 0.1 was sub-7, so I guess I have some untapped sprinting speed in me yet. I did a warm up and cool down mile as well to bring it to 5.3 miles for the day.

Thursday: Quick run-commute jaunt to book club, picking up some duck liver mousse and buffalo cheese on the way for tartines. 2.5 slow miles with my running backpack on. I contemplated running home but had some wine and a lot of tartines, so enjoyed a leisurely walk.

Friday: Off day.

Saturday: 8ish mile long run to celebrate Summer Streets. The last time I crossed the Brooklyn Bridge was on a run was last September and it was rough; my Achilles were acting up and I got water on the Manhattan side of the bridge then turned around to shuffle home. This time, I was loving life. Endorphins all over the place. We took a few moments to appreciate the views at the top, then paused at the start of Summer Streets for free coconut water. My Garmin got confused after the Brooklyn Bridge and gave me an extra mile (at a blistering pace). I peeled off the route at 59th St. and got a Sprinkles cupcake and some blue Gatorade before taking the subway home. I wish Summer Streets was every week (in the summer or otherwise) and Citibank replied to my Tweet about those sentiments.

Sunday: France Run 8K plus 2 miles warmup and 1 mile cooldown. I’m not giving either race this week the full race report because I’m trying to focus on the marathon. But I’m inclined to agree with whoever called this the France Swim. The rain began right as we were still in the corrals, then intensified in mile 1. I took my glasses off and put them in my pocket (yay for my Lululemon Speed Track shorts and their ample pocket space) and tried to take the Harlem hills as best I could. I stopped for water only after mile 4 because I had foolishly eschewed it before. Overall, my pace sped up just a touch from Team Champs 3 weeks prior.

I later visited the Museum of Ice Cream and mainly got my money’s worth in candy.

total: 23.8 out of 26-29 total recommended. Not bad but I do wish I had squeezed in a few more Thursday night or you know, made my Tuesday workout happen.