Race Recap: Yeungling Shamrock Dolphin Challenge – Part Two

I know what you’re thinking – it’s about time Megan wrote the next part of the race recap. Okay, probably not, but I’m definitely thinking it! So let’s get on with it and recap the 8k!

This was my first time running back to back races on different days. I have run the Irish Double at the Bay City St. Patrick’s Day races, which is an 8k followed by a 5k in the same morning. The Dolphin Challenge is an 8k on Saturday and half marathon on Sunday. Just like I do with the Irish Double, I had been thinking about a strategy for how to tackle these races for weeks. Did I want to try to PR the 8k, since it is super flat, and I didn’t really have a time goal for the half marathon? Or did I want to take it easy on the 8k and save my energy for the half, maybe get a PR there, or at least make sure I’d get my goal – to run the race without run/walk intervals? I told myself and everyone else that it would be a game day decision… and it pretty much was.

One thing I did know about the 8k is that I was going to costume it up! My friend Jenny was planning on doing a rainbow/pot of gold costume and I was going all out St. Paddy’s green. I ordered the Equality liquid lipstick bundle from Jeffree Star cosmetics so that I could give Jenny a rainbow lip and so that I could use the awesome green color in it for my lips. I must say… our looks turned out awesome!

The sun was rising on a beautiful race day. The weather was awesome – in the 50’s, partly cloudy with a little bit of wind. As we approached the start of the race, the four of us running together agreed that we would take it easy. We agreed on doing run/walk intervals and set our watches for 90 second runs with 30 second walks.

We took off and quickly what was supposed to be a “take it easy” kinda race turned into an actual race to me. The girls were running the run intervals at a pretty good clip. I hung with them until about the halfway point of the race. At that point I couldn’t keep up with the running and walking paces, so I decided to just run out the rest of it on my own. I ended up maintaining my pace pretty darn well and even pushed it for the finish! I ended up with a final time (per my Garmin) of 53:27.1 for 5.02 miles – 10:38/mi pace; my official time was 53:25 for 8k – 10:45/mi pace. My 8k PR is 52:32 – I was only 53 seconds off my PR time! Again… so much for “taking it easy”!

After the race we hung out at the post-race party for a while. I had so much fun hanging out with my new friends! We of course enjoyed awesome lunch and dinner that day to prepare for the big day ahead of us – the half marathon. At dinner I talked to Tammy, one of the girls that ran with us at the 8k that morning, and we agreed to run the half together. She was training for her first marathon (which she has since completed and did amazing!!) and didn’t mind taking it easy running with me. The rest of the story is coming up in the third and final part of this race recap – I promise you’ll see it SOONER than LATER!

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