Category Archives: 10k

2014 UAE Health Kidney 10k

May 10, 2014
New York, NY
Event website

I have a lot of running this week. The weekend is two NYRR events then six marathons in the next week for the New England Challenge. I’d rather not run these right before a bunch of marathons, but my calendar doesn’t have many openings for the nine events I need to run for guaranteed entry into the New York Marathon. I’ll take it easy today.

This run is sponsored by the Consulate of the United Arab Emirates. Instead of a camel, one of the booths brought a camel-like dog, which is as New York as Central Park gets on a weekend morning. By the time this race is done the park will be full of dogs getting their first pee of the morning. Read more »

2012 Morton Arboretum Arbor Day 10k

April 21, 2012
Lisle, Illinois
Event website

2012 Bermuda Triangle Challenge 10k

Bermuda Flag

January 14, 2012
Hamilton, Bermuda
Event website

After last night’s decent performance in the mile, even though I missed my goal by seconds, I was a little too confident today. On the taxi to the start area, Thom Gilligan of Marathon Tours and one of the people responsible for the Bermuda Triangle Challenge, says this is the toughest 10k course he’s ever run. There are some monster uphills. It’s not the uphills that killed me and made this one of my most embarrassing efforts ever. I have to run a marathon tomorrow and I barely made it through this dinky 10k. It’s barely worth the time it takes me to write this. I got beat by a guy in a full on bear costume, as well as almost everyone else.

The sun didn’t even come out today. It was overcast, which is normally the sign of fair weather for running. It almost burnt through the clouds before the start.

Almost some sun

Bermuda may sound like a paradise, but it’s not this weekend. It’s overcast and windy, and as pretty as the beaches might normally be, they are completely unattractive in this weather.

There are some hills

The race started at the sports stadium and went downhill for two miles. I ran these at my usual 10k pace, somewhere just above 8 minute miles. At the two mile mark I realized I was in some serious trouble though. I was overheating. It’s warm here, but also very humid. I’m not at all acclimated. I needed some water. I slowed my pace, but the problem with overheating is that even a slow pace is still generates heat. Once that happens, my respiration rate freaks out. I wasn’t even three miles into what should have been a leisurely run and I was walking.

The course, flat on the east-west lines and hilly otherwise

I wasn’t that concerned about the 10k. It’s embarrassing to walk in any event, and the shorter the more embarrassing it is. If this were just a 10k, it’s not a big problem. With a marathon the next day, it’s a big problem. However, I have to remind myself that I had to walk part of a 5k two weeks before my Goofy Challenge. Sometimes you just have bad days, and when you have bad days you know there will be more of them. The more you have the more you know you can survive them and that they don’t necessarily mean that the next day is going to be bad too. I thought about Graeme Obree, who didn’t break the hour indoor cycling record on the day he booked the track. He only missed it by a single kilometer. Instead of going home, he drank lots of water throughout the night, stretched every couple of hours, and came back early the next morning to try again. But, I also have to remind myself that I’m not Graeme Obree, or any other sort of athlete at that level. I’m barely even a runner.

I got to the first water stop at 3 miles and chugged a couple cups of water and some Gatorade. I got myself running again. Or, I was shuffling. I wasn’t recovering as fast as I wanted. I made it past Mile 4 and walked some more. I alternated running and walking, feeling really warm. Around the Mile 5 marker, a guy in a bear suit passed me. He had the head and everything. I was dying from the heat in just shorts and a shirt, and he was doing better than me.

The hill at mile 5 was a killer. It was moderately steep and long. There was another hill just before the finish, and I could see the Bear guy start to walk. I thought maybe I could catch him, but after a few steps he was back to running. He finished ahead of me by a couple of minutes.

I got beat by this bear.

I finished in a pace that I wouldn’t be satisfied with in a very slow recovery run. I like that the medal says “Finisher” explicitly. I finished. I also ran, as they say. I merely made it from one line to the next before the organizers went home.


Now I need to regroup, refuel, and plan for tomorrow. I’m going to need to take it a lot slower and manage the heat. The time cut-off is seven hours, and I hope I don’t need all of that. I’m going to set a maximum pace on my watch and try to keep to that no matter how I feel. Under these conditions, I’ll be satisfied with anything under 5 hours. I just don’t want to pass out from heat exhaustion.

2011 Run in the New Year

December 31, 2011
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
5k GPX 10k GPX
Event website

I don’t get a New Year’s Day run this year. I’ve never been to Milwaukee despite living not so far away—an easy drive, so I decided to celebrate the New Year there. Once I had already made reservations at a hotel I started looking for runs; there weren’t any in the area on January 1st, but there was a double event on December 31st. I could run the 5k starting at 11:30am then the 10k at 12:00pm. I’ve done this once before with the Heroes of Hope run. If I run the first one fast enough, I have some time to get some water and almost catch my breath before the next start.

This race, put on by Racers Against Childhood Cancer, is part of the Great Lake Running Series. Run at the Wisconsin State Fairgrounds (next to an Olympic Training Center), the course is a big mess of intestines wrapping around on itself, using a couple of the parts of the course in both directions. Read more »

2011 Berbee Derby

November 24, 2011
Fitchberg, Wisconsin
Event site

I was in Madison for Thanksgiving for friends and I’ll get a chance for a different Turkey Trot. I’m always up from running in a new place.

Just a bit over freezing and overcast, it was perfect race weather, and once again I’m surprised that all of my favorite cold weather gear is black—compression tights, my Team Ortho Monster Dash hoodie, and Lululemon gloves and hat. I have plenty of long-sleeved shirts in orange, bright green, yellow, white, and other non-black colors that would probably be just fine, but when I’m waiting to start and just after I finish, I haven’t found anything more comfy than the Team Ortho gear. Read more »

Running in San Francisco

Running in San Francisco in the summer (or any time, really) is preferable to almost anything in Chicago. I’ve found that I like running in the cold much better. Several people told me that Mark Twain had remarked “The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco., and even though he never said that, it wasn’t even true this week. It was warm and pleasant. It rained one day, causing the locals much concern. “It never rains in July!” they said. Read more »

2011 Team Ortho Polar Dash

Jan 1, 2011
Minneapolis, MN
Event website

It’s the first run of the year! It’s going to be a tough one too because it’s bitterly cold and it snowed last night. It snowed a lot. There’s a lot of snow on the ground and even the locals are cold. But, this is the land of Garrison Keillor and the bachelor farmers, where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the runners are above average.

This is the first run in my Team Ortho Challenge. Each run gets a medal that’s a pie piece that fits together with the pie pieces from other events to form a giant Thundercat of a medal.

I dress up with all my winter gear: my ski jacket, ski googles, tights and wind pants, and the rest of the snivel gear I need to keep warm for the half hour before the start and in which I’ll overheat during the run.

There’s quite a bit of standing around for this run as they ensure the course is safe. The roads are a mess so the police want to take extra care. That gave me time to look at all of the start banners; one per state flag.

The run isn’t so much a run as a test to survive the event. People won’t be setting PRs in today’s run. I wonder if I should have signed up for the 5k instead of the 10k.

The road is slick with snow that won’t melt but also has no other way to go. The runners keep moving it around, but it’s not going away. It’s more like a lump of bread dough that gives when you push it but springs back.

This makes everything very slippery, so my strides are much shorter. If I try to push off, I just slip.

The end is the worst. It’s almost over but that finish line is so far away as I trudge through the snow to get to it. It’s just like running in soft sand.

But I do finish and get my first pie piece.

2010 Heroes of Hope 10k

2010 Chicago Lung Run 10k

2007 United Run for the Zoo

June 3, 2007
Chicago, IL
Event website

My first 10k and I get to run through a zoo to do it! I can’t remember much about this run other than not much of it was actually in the Lincoln Park Zoo, which is actually better since it’s narrow and slippery in there.

I finished, so now I’ve done a 5k, an 8k, and a 10k.