Holyoke St. Pattys Day 10K Race Report

10K Race Report
I'll start off by saying I've raced this before, its a HUGE local race. Everyone who runs does the Holyoke St. Pattys day race. Plus it has a reputation of being a killer course with practically all hills the first 4 miles or so. In 2009, Shelley and I ran for a 1:10:11 finish, conquering the hills and running the entire race. Unfortunately this year we had a later race start at 1pm. I am NOT a fan of a late race start. My body likes to run in the morning. Plus, against me, I haven't been doing much hill work lately.

Shelley and I picked up our bibs & t-shirts friday night before the race to avoid race morning hassle

I had my regular breakfast, then prior to race time had my usual pre-race food. Toast with peanut butter & banana, washed down with riptide rush gatorade.

I packed a cooler backpack with beer for after the race, and a post race bag with a sweatshirt and snack for me, and Kevin and I headed off to the race. I had a few friends running, my speedy trooper friend, my NYC friend and Shelley was my pace parter. I managed to catch up with everyone before the race start, and a little before 1, Shelley and I lined up. We had our matching Tutus, our green New Orleans tech tees, and our matching hydration belts. We decided to go without music, I'm kind of getting used to it now.

As you can see, the hills are pretty brutal, especially for someone who hates uphills. I wish every race was downhill!

We started off pretty good, but as soon as we hit the first big hill after mile 1, I really started to feel it. I was exhausted, and had to stop for a walk break. I went a little more, then a little after mile 2, I sent Shelley away from me. I could tell I was slowing her down, and she wanted to fly. I was getting side stitches, and knew I would be fine if I was able to incorporate some walking into the race. 

I struggled through the next mile & a half or so, then the downhills came & I took off. Obviously since my mile 5 clocked in at a 9:46 pace with a 12:15 pace the mile before. One awesome part? The shout outs that people loved the Tutu, random hi fives from kids and guys who were along the course. The crowd support is definitely the strongest point of this course. People are lined up through the entire thing, even if they are drinking and offering you beer & shots. There was one more uphill about a half mile from the finish, then a slight uphill finish, then I was done!

Heres the splits

I knew going into this race that I wouldn't PR. Its an extremely tough course for me, and I just wasn't feeling it. I did however want to beat my time from 2009, and I did by about 2 minutes!

My least favorite part of the race is the post race confusion. The finishing chute is not blocked off for runners, and there was no water immediately following the finish. I couldn't find the water because there was so many people in the way. Another big negative, NO FREE BEER! I think for a St. Patricks Day Race they should at least give you 1!
Me & speedy trooper

After the race, I found a drunk Kevin, who offered me beer, and we hung around the big park drinking with some of our friends until we were ready to go.

I saw these guys after the race, and immediately it made me think of EMZ, I had to get a picture.

Official Stats
1743/2384 overall
1045/1398 female

Hopefully next year I'll be in better shape & a little speedier!


The Green Girl said...

Love the bibs and your outfit, too cute, girl.

Wells L said...

I live in super flat IN and hills just scare me to death. My May half will have some hills and I'm petrified. Great job beating your 2009 time. I think your time is fantastic and it sure looks like you have a blast!

Lisa said...

Good job on a tough 10K

chris mcpeake said...

No free beer!!! outrageous.
congrats on the race

Suzy said...

Congrats on the race! Your tutu turned out great.

Penny said...

You did great with all of those hills. I hate hills and dont know if I could of done that good. Love the TUTU. My ST.Patrick race April 3, I know it is not as hilly as yours. Congrats on your race you did great.

Carly said...

Nice. I really want to do a 10K this year.

Trish said...

Love the tutus!!

Kirstie said...

Love the tutu. I need to get a pink one myself. Congrats on a tough course. Hills are never easy. Pat yourself on the back for this one!

LauraElaine said...

Great job! Love to tutu outfits!!