I always thought those embroidered towels were stooopid… but this is different!
It’s ok, you can say it…
I always thought those embroidered towels were stooopid… but this is different!
It’s ok, you can say it…
As usual, I will be dividing this report in two: The Race (bib pick up, amenities, course, atmosphere, etc.) and My Race below
The Mini10K is one of the most traditional women’s races in the world, as it was the first race to cater to women. It was the original girl power event, organized by Fred Lebow in 1972, and had Katheryn Switzer and Nina Kuscik, who you usually see invited to the festivities. Tough course, big names, and always running celebrities and traditions in place, it’s one of the nyc races you don’t want to miss! trust me, you don’t.
For more info and some great pictures, check the NYRR Oakley Mini 10K official page (And you can spot me in the photo gallery!)
Bib Pick Up/Registration. Was a zip as usual. I was excited about the shirt, as every year we get a fitted cotton shirt I can (sometimes) wear to work, but this time, given the new Oakley sponsorship, we got tent tank tops. I call them tents because I got the smallest size they had (an S) and it was enormous for me. It’s on the “give away” pile. Sad. I had liked it!!!!
Start. Was super organized. I always get stuck in lines in these big races but these one felt like a small race..?!?! I had no problems getting to my corral, to a portapotty, all super easy, even if my nerves were expecting all of the opposite. Luckily, my corral (blue) was right in front of the ceremonies so I got to see all the speakers, which included Mary Wittenberg, some triathlete I didn’t know (was just told by my Ironman boyfriend that it was Jenny Fletcher) Desi Davila and…
Who better to kick off the morning than running legend Nina Kuscsik, co-founder of the original “Mini” in 1972 (along with Kathrine Switzer and the late great Fred Lebow)? “Look how far we’ve come,” Kuscsik said into the mic. “It’s great to see you all out here.” Toshiko d’Elia, an 83-year-old masters age-group winner, joined Kuscsik and Mary Wittenberg to wish everyone good luck at the start; she had her 1978 Mini shirt with her.
Chilling. This race always gets to me: Girl Power!!!
Like I said… it’s so friendly in there, at least until the gun goes off and then it’s elbows up. Just kidding. or am? I am! I am!! I saw a lot of my team-mates there, Lora of LVrunsnyc.com, everyone was in there in the blue corral an we were all hugging! We chatted, got excited that all the race elites were a meter away (SO crazy)…
Also, it always smells better in the corral in a women’s race. I wonder…
The NYRR photographer got a pic of Michelle, Elke, and I (gallery here!) and soon, we’d be on our way!
Weather. Well, I’ve done the Mini10K seven times and this was the best ever. By FAR. It’s usually in high 70s or even mid 80s with humidity. Always the humidity fro some reason. It must have been 62 or 64, that is usually hot for me, but for the Mini, that was the best weather in… ever. Sun came out and people said they felt the humidity in the last miles. I was just happy it wasn’t as bad usual 😉 Low expectations help!!
The Course. Well, I think it’s one of the roughest 10ks you can do. Seriously hurtful. Elevation profiles are here if you feel like reliving the pain or wonder if you dare. It’s such a tricky race… you start in a mile long straightaway where everyone usually takes out too fast. I promise you, 94% of the people, are going too fast and WILL fade. Never look around!! As soon as you get in the park, there’s a hill, there another climb, then a mountain, then everest. No, I don’t think I am exaggerating. For some reason, this race didn’t feel too crowded for me. I was running comfortable and usually around the same people. My only issue is that NO ONE around me was running tangents. Ahem girls, seriously? There was some serious cheering on CP West, on Engineer’s Gate and at 72nd tranverse, but most of the park was quiet. Loved it.
The Finish Line. Fun to go through and no crowding. We got medals, flowers, bananas, bagels and water. I was able to meet up with some friends right there and catch up.
The Post Race. There was a line, loooong line, for picture taking?? We spotted Desi Davila in the Oakleys tent!
We stayed for the raffles and team pictures… I won nothing, how is that possible. It was such a gorgeous day to stay in the park so Kirby, Juan and I walked back to the UES. I love this race.
I wasn’t sure how I’d do but having done a 10K a month before in 44:32 I knew I would try to go sub 45. This course was harder so I was sure I wouldn’t PR. Actually, it’s not that this course is just harder, it’s that this race always leaves me weeping. It’s just hard. And hilly.
I woke up already serious and with a will kill you if you talk face so the boyfriend knew to stay out of the way and did a wonderfully supportive act. I had my coffee, nothing else, and took the bus downtown to 57th and walked west. By the time I got there, I found a portapotty, did my thing, had a cup of water, which was ALL the fuel I had in me (plus/minus the coffee I had and already got rid of), kissed him and went to the corral.
I found a lot of people on my way, it was cheery and fun and everyone was smiling and relaxed. Is this not the hardest 10K ever? I guess I was the only one dreading it… Well.
I wore my mizunos sayonaras, as usual, love those shoes. It was in the 60s so just booty shorts and bra, this is too hot for singlet and I really have no shame. I know, I am older and should hide some stuff/care but whatevers, this is me.
I got the the blue corral, got photographed, heard the opening speeches, and was ready to go. I think, for the first time ever, I knew what I had to do: Hold it!!!
Mile 1 is always rough, people go out like CRAZY. Seriously. And I made that mistake in every of each Mini I did before. Focus, stay down: 7:09. Nice slow opening. As soon as we enter the park there is a hill, then another. It gets really tricky and a few of us kept pacing each other: 7:03, so I am starting to warm up. Then we climb and we climb and there is no one to cheer there (other than Helen, thanks for being there and the pictures!)
It starts to sink in: 7:09. This is all great but this is the part where the wheels come off. Always. This time, even if I couldn’t stop it, I held my ground: 7:38. It really could have been worse, I thought.
Now: 1, it starts hurting, and 2, I start pushing. Both, of course.
Mile 5 is 6:58, I got this. I start feeling ok but I know I can’t get excited and mess this up now: it’s too early! Mile 6: 7:03.
And the last bit in 6:49 pace. I guess I had some in there, even up another hill!!!
Finish time: 44:46. Average Pace: 7:13
Previous PR: 44:32. From: May, 2013
Age Grading: 69.25%
Overall/Gender Place: 207 of 5595
Age Place: 27 of 925
Worth noting: I am getting this pacing thing right, I think. A 10k is Central Park is always brutal, in any direction, and I don’t think I messed this one up!
Fun at the finish line:
So, get ready for this. Sit down. Because the Mini is a ladies race, the men in my team have nothing to do but cheer… so cheer they did… Are you sitting down?
Right? I love this race!
(as much as I hate the racing a 10k in Central Park part itself). It’s always a riot. Glad we have nice weather and soooooo much fun on the course. And… get ready, ladies will be cheering this next weekend at this Sunday’s nyrr race… it’s on.
And the Garmin winner to my Guess My Finish time contest is MN Slow Runner, who guessed exactly 44:46, but there were SO many people who were super close!
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I have more background to this race than a race report really: I signed up at the last possible minute and until 2 hours before the race, I wasn’t sure if I’d race it..
Monday, I felt horrible. Horrible. Like I-hate-everyone-horrible. I had slept very little and was in a foul mood. When I got home, I was in such fury, I put my lightest minimalists on (the A5s) and went out. Soon enough I was doing mile reps, because. A bit after I joined the BostonStrong run, did 3 more miles and headed home. While I stretched, I noticed I was stiff. I bent my foot as I always do, and CRACK. Something.
I kept my foul mood all night and said nothing hoping it’d go away.
Tuesday, it did not go away. I finally told Juan it was hurting. I always think that if you don’t say it outloud, it’s not happening. I ❤ denial. So he bent it around, nothing’s broken. Then he went to town on my foot. I screamed, cried, bit socks, made a huge raucous, kicked, and felt like I was dying. He had said it would hurt. He also said he’d make it better. And for some reason, I believe him. No running. I still decided to sign up for the 4 miler on Sunday. Should I sign up? oh well, I’ll sign up!
Wednesday it hurt. No running.
Thursday it hurt. Little 6 sloooow miles with pain. I shouldn’t race.
Friday it hurt. No running.
Saturday, it hurt a little less. Should I even get up on Sunday? Will I make it worse? Ugh.
Sunday. No pain.
What? Yeah. No pain. Okay… maybe I’ll go, take it easy, and drop if it starts hurting.
Five blocks away from home, I realized I left my motoactv. No GPS, no mile splits and no music, UGH. I panicked for a second. Then I decided I’d be ok. I can pace fine but I’d miss the music and wondered if I’d get bored. Also, I breathe really loud and it’s annoying. Oh, well. On On. I was mostly excited to try out my new Mizunos Sayonara; I had loved them on Thursday’s run and didn’t even think twice about racing in them!
Security in NYRR races now is a big deal. You need to put your stuff in a clear bag to leave it at baggage. You need to show your bib to get into the race area. You need to show your bib to get into the portapotties area. Lots of security.
I understand it, 100%, but it takes a bit away from the experience. I always felt safe in the park, even with the assaults and other stuff that has always happened. This makes it a bit more real, but no complains!
Met my team, pretended to warm up (I don’t warm up!), and headed to the corral.
Weather was nice, 53 and sunny. I wondered if I should have dropped the singlet and race in my bra, I knew it’d hot soon.
The gun goes off, I count the seconds until I pass the start mat, just in case that’d help with the clocks. Approximately 25 seconds. I felt like everyone and their mother was passing me. No watch, I was going blind… I had no idea if I was going too slow. I DO love to start slow (on races!).
Clock on Mile 1 read 7:35. Uhm, was that a 7:10? Who knows.
No watch, no music, I felt I had more control on my speed. Mile 2 said 14:45. Or something like that.
I did get hot soon. There is two kinds of weather for me: Winter/Cold, and sports bra weather.
The whole way I felt super comfortable. Easy and Controlled. The foot wasn’t hurting and I was happy. I never felt out of breath, or like I was going too hard. I wondered if I was going too slow. I smashed all my doubts and kept at it. Legs were moving fine. Mile 3 came and went, and by the time I reached the top of the last hill I started sprinting. For the first time in a while in a short race I felt like I had a sprint. I passed a lot of people in that last half mile. I was running all out in my last 300 meters. Fierce face and all.
Ben Ko: thanks for the photos! You’re always everywhere! PS: keep in mind these were in the last half mile.
Finished, with no clock to stop, with a 28 something. Yey, I thought! PR was 28:09 so I knew I wasn’t too far. Good.
Foot doesn’t hurt: I am HAPPY. That’s all I cared about.
Then I saw it…
– A PR
– An Age Group placing
– And a AG over 70%
I just love how every run and every race always have such unexpected results. CRAZY.
Finish time: 28:00. Average Pace: 7:00
Previous PR: 28:09. From: September 2010, OMFG!
Age Grading: 70:23%
Overall Place: 568 of 6,998
Gender Place: 50 of 3,457
Age Place: 3 of 500
We hung out a bit at the finish, it was such a nice day to stay out in the park all day…
Well, it was huge surprise, breaking a PR that was over two years old, placing, foot not hurting (thanks J) and yes, mostly excited for the month ahead… I am still not sure if I am doing the NJ Half this weekend or the Japan 4 miler. We shall see. And… Brooklyn Half in two weeks!
They fit amazing. I am beyond excited. They are in a fight with the Saucony A5 right now, but these are brand new and rested so…
10 hours later:
okay, just got some info (and woke up!). They are replacing the precisions -not the elixirs (elixirs will be available until January it seems from a thread on RW so buy a few pairs NOW). the sayonara is AMAZING, seamless, super light (around 7 ounces for a size 8 and SUPER narrow in the middle of the shoe and huge in the front. huge. they feel amazing. and light. having a shoegasm! available July 5 for purchase.
4 weeks later:
Well, I’ve used this shoe for every race I’ve done, including a 10k, a 4 miler, and a half marathon. they are amazingly comfortable and I just don’t want to race in another shoe. they have enough cushioning for the ones who are not ready to go to a lighter shoe and this would be a smart transition, but they are very light, wide and comfortable. They’re my go to shoe now. Haven’t run them in trails though, and not sure I’d do most of my mileage in them but they’re a perfect in between and definitely my right hand shoe for races (though I’d probably still wear the TypeA5 for a 5k and under). Love them. Want another pair!