Sunday, April 05, 2009

Cherry Blossom 10 Miler: PR!

Picture yourself in a phone booth with 50 of your best friends, trying to run.

That's kind of how this 12,000-strong race felt.

My speed development coach had warned us that the course would be tight for the first mile but would clear out after that.

Um, no.

I started in the last wave, and was immediately boxed in. There was literally nowhere to go. By mile 4 when there was STILL no sign of any clearing happening, I was getting grumpy (shocker), despite the absolutely perfect gorgeous weather and beautiful cherry trees and scenic...scenery. It FINALLY cleared out a little by 8 miles.

See what I'm sayin'?? Like this, pretty much the whole way! Photo courtesy D.C. Rainmaker, who somehow managed to miss me.

(Sidebar/Rant: Is there some RULE that whenever I have a race my neighbors must throw a party the night before? And not in my honor? After listening to it for 1 1/2 hours I finally banged on their door at 10:30 and asked them nicely to please keep it down. Then I yelled out my window at them, cuz their balcony is RIGHT NEXT to my bedroom window. A basement apartment will totally be a step up.)

Anywho, I was hoping for 10 minute miles.

I was hoping, actually, to positive split this thing, my usual way: Run all out for the first 7 miles or so, and then, you know, die. Well, mission accomplished! Sort of. Except for the all-out running part. Still, happiness reigns!

mile 1: 10:40
mile 2: 10:31
mile 3: 10:24
mile 3.1 1:05 (5K=32:41)
mile 3.9: 9:34
mile 5: 10:22
mile 6: 10:21
mile 6.2 2:50 (10k=1:05:50 PR)
mile 6.8: 8:49
mile 8: 9:58
mile 9: 11:14
mile 10: 11:16

1:47:02 Min/mile: 10:43

The course has changed since 2006. In 2006 it included a nice 2-3 mile downhill at the end. Now it's pretty much all flat except for a slight incline around mile 9.

Other than dodging walk/runners and people who drop their FULL water cups right behind them (yes, I'm looking at you), the race was uneventful.

I managed to avoid walking except for a few (OK many) seconds at water stops 4 & 6, so that was a personal victory.

Cherry Blossom 10 Miler, 2009
Jeanne McCann, 52 Bethesda MD
Gun: 2:02:42
Net: 1:47:02
Min/Mile: 10:43 <----THAT'S MY 10 K PACE. WOOT.

The Army "We Ran Out of Water at Mile 4" 10 Miler, 2007 (Recap)
50, Bethesda MD
Gun: 2:23:53
Net: 2:02:41
Min/mile: 12:16

The Cherry "My Maiden 10 Miler" Blossom 10 Miler, 2006 (recap)
49, Bethesda
Gun: 2:06:46
Net: 1:57:50
Min/Mile: 11:47


Runner Susan said...

WOOT! Great pace, Jeanne!! Congrats on the PR.

Old School Runner said...


Well done! Sorry I missed you in a field of a million runners. I agree with you--it was very tight, pretty much through mile 8 as you said. Part of it was the narrowness of some of the roads and the two ridiculous hairpin turns. Why can't they design a better course? Still, the weather was nearly perfect, and the cherry blossoms were at their peak.

Susan said...

AWESOME! I'd say that speedwork stuff (what a concept!!!) has paid off. Go Jeanne!

Jon (was) in Michigan said...

Nice job, Jeanne! And wow! Look at the difference between gun and net time. Good grief. You could have gone and gotten some lunch while waiting to move to the start line.

Kelly said...

Uneventful? You PRed! Yay! Congrats.

And I've never been in that crowded situation... but I can imagine it. And in my head, I'm extremel pissed off.

Neal Carlton said...

Congrats! I hope you were able to find some DC Tri Clubbers for brunch afterwards.

peter said...

Is this another huge PR? I thinks so! Congrats! And in a pace-challenged race to boot (a narrow bottleneck race in effect). Wow.

Nancy Toby said...


Guess what? That's not your 10k pace any more. :-)

LBTEPA said...


Lesser is More said...

Whoa - massive PR! Congrats! Plus, you rode your bike "hard" on Saturday, so that makes it even more amazing! I noticed a sub-10 minute split in there. I'm sure you'll see a lot more of those by the end of the year ;)

Sunshine said...

Phone booth description is priceless.
I do have to say that is magnificent scenery for a phone booth though.
And Congratulations.

FMRC WS-100 Aid Station said...

With a great race like that however did you end up comparing yourself to a dick? no comprende but the race was great! Congratulations. Your speed development program seems to be working after all.

21stCenturyMom said...

oops - that would be me who signed in as WS-100 aid station (only I didn't) - WTF, Blogger??!!!

Rhea said...

That's excellent! One reason why I haven't run the Cherry Blossom again since the 2005 race (my 1st and only) was b/c of the crowds. And b/c someone threw a bottle of water at my head and narrowly missed.

Dori said...

Wow, you at you Ms. Speedy Gonzales. You are getting faster with age! That looks like a beautiful race, if crowded. Come run the Wine Country half with me next year. The field is so small, you can't help but place in your AG.

David said...

Your net time in the Army Waterless (very anti-Navy, I think) 10-Miler was one second better than your gun time in the Cherry. What's that mean? You were in the Air Force (flying!).

P.S. You never write or visit. I am sorely disappointed.

a.maria said...

NICE PR LADY!!!! you're getting too fast for me to run with anymore.

you suck.

Rainmaker said...

You rocked. Those speed workouts are indeed paying off. Imagine what it will be like by fall? You'll be kicking ass on that half-iron.

Btw, I think next time you ought to take your full water cup and just randomly throw the water up in the air behind you. Would be prety hilarious.

Jack said...

Great job, congrats on the PR! You, grumpy, no way ;-)

ShirleyPerly said...

Jeanne, you PR mad woman, you!

Indeed, those speed workouts have paid off. And I'll bet you would have been able to go even faster had there been fewer people blocking you in. But why spend all your PRs at one race? Spread them out and enjoy. CONGRATS!!!

Vickie said...

Great job! (and yay to me finally getting a computer upgrade so I can actually comment without my internet crashing).