Saturday, June 23, 2012

Race Report: 2012 Dreaded Druid Hills 10K

I guess I talked a little too much smack after the Dreaded Druid Hills 10K last year, because they made the course tougher this year.  Well, that and I'm running half the mileage if that I was running at this time last year, but mostly I'm sure it was just that the course was tougher.

Of course, it's all fun and games at the start of the race:

(The two druids were hilarious.  And they can have their stinkin' hills back.)

(Do you like my sexy compression socks?  Yeah, I don't particularly like them, either.)

(And we're off.)

(Do you see me near the front of the pack?!!!
Well, except for all the many, many other people ahead of me that aren't in the picture.)

(You can see the druids running. One of them, at least, disrobed during the race.) 

And then...the pain.

I've never taken a walk break in any race shorter than a marathon, but I took three today.  There's a really disheartening point in the race at about the 2.5 mile mark (I tried really hard not constantly look at Garmin) where I had climbed a big hill and was running down a very long steep incline, and volunteers said "Stay the left".  Yup, we had to go back up it.  The course was more of an out-and-back compared to last year, but I got to about the four mile mark feeling pretty good, and sort of died.  I also made my classic mistake at the beginning of the race:  I started out in Jackass Mode, weaving through the crowd and passing people.  In this case, it probably wasn't the difference between having to walk a little and not having to walk, but I need to get back my feel for pacing and I especially need to be smarter if I run this one again to take a more conservative approach at the beginning of the race, which is hilly compared to most local races but nothing compared to the toughest parts of this course.

I credit the race directors, Falls Road Running, for a tougher course this year, but still most of this bonkage is on me:  much less mileage and a lot less hill work put in.   All things considered, I'm pretty happy with my 1:00:34.  I was hoping for a little better, but anticipating slower.  From here, I can see that I need to decide my running strategy for the rest of the summer, but that's another blog post. But know this, today the Dreaded Druid Hills got the best of me, but I will be back again next year, hopefully coming off another marathon finish and ready to improve on this showing.

(The finish line is always a welcome sight.)

(Sadly eating my post-race watermelon.)

Thanks to Chris for all the pictures, and for driving us home while I whimpered pathetically.  Now it's my turn to put on m spectator hat (It doubles as an Orioles hat) and cheer her on in tomorrow's Baltimore Women's Classic.


  1. There's nothing better than watermelon after a tough hilly 5k. Well done, sir...even if it wasn't your fastest, you knocked out a 10k on a hilly course...better than sitting home not doing it :).

  2. Ahh yes the post race watermelon! Glad you survived I was contemplating doing this one, but considering the name of the race I decided not to! Great job running in the heat this weekend!

    1. It's a fun race, it really is, but not a good one if you're coming back from injury, or like me, just kind of slumping. I really liked the shirt design, though.

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