Review: Run Mag Mile 10k 2019

Disclaimer: I’m reviewing the Run Mag Mile 10k as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

BibRave was kind enough to give me an entry to the Run Mag Mile 10k on Saturday September 7, 2019, so I could run it for the first time! 🙂 I know I’ve lived in Chicago for 5 years and it’s a little sad I have not run it, but if you are a long time reader of Black Bean Queen you know that I have spent my fair share of those years injured… Anyway, let’s discuss the race weekend!

Packet Pick-up

As is tradition for most Chicago RAM races, packet pick-up was at Fleet Feet Old Town. I went on Friday late afternoon, since I did not have class and was already in the area. It was a little crowded, but I was in and out quickly. It was a little confusing when I showed my race registration to claim my bib and they told me my bib was already picked up…but this little snafu was solved quickly. I just had to go to a different spot of the store to grab my bib since all the elite bibs were pulled ahead of time apparently. Which bring sme to my next point, I was seeded as an elite for this race and that offered me some cool perks that I was not expecting, such as a separate bag check, an elites only tent, preferential placing in the start corral, and snacks/beverages! I was also a little surprised to be seeded as elite because I consider myself to very much be an aspiring sub-elite runner at this moment in time.

Pre-Race

I live within a mile of the start line of the race, so I decided to jog over with my husband who came to spectate for moral support. I was not as early as I wanted to be because I had to ummm….go to the bathroom before I left, but hey, better at home than a porta potty when given the option, right? 😛

Anyway, I quickly ran to the elite tent to check my bags and ditch my layers. I could not help, but feel out of place. All these legit athletes were with their coaches talking race strategy, changing into Nike Vapor Fly or Next %’s and here I was by my lonesome checking that my Saucony Kinvara’s were laced up tight enough…But I reminded myself that I belong there and it’s not a fluke! I am getting faster! And I did run competitively in college and never reached my potential due to injury and burn-out, so why not now?

I made my way to the start corral to do some strides and drills. The weather was perfect, not too hot or cold and hardly windy! I felt decent considering all the 50 mile marathon training weeks on my legs leading into this race. This race was just for fun and to change up my training, since the Chicago Marathon is the goal race! I did not taper for it whatsoever, so going into the race my legs were quite tired. 😛 My goal was a sub 40 10k because that’s been a goal of mine for a while and because my workouts during marathon training indicated this was possible. Read more to see if I reached that goal!

I loved that I got to start at the very front of the corral as an elite, because start lines stress me out. Especially after my experience at the Boston Marathon 5k where I lined up at the proper spot, but no one else did…and then I ended up weaving in and out of slower runners all race. I prefer to be as close to the front and by the least amount of other runners as possible, but I know that is a wish most of us share 😛

The Race

I did a race recap on Instagram, so here’s a slightly longer/more detailed version of that recap:

-Miles 0-2: Woah, I’m going low 6 pace- this could be bad…or good 😂 But I feel strong. I am glad I saw my friend Elin cheering (& congratulated her on her engagement the night before 💍) & later my hubs because they both gave me a boost ♥️ Plus, my husband snapped some cool running photos without me having to ask him (see below)! He’s a true IG husband through and through :P⠀Around this point a few corral A runners, mainly males began to catch up to me.

-Mile 3: Okay, with a 20 flat 5k, a sub 40 is possible, but I need to negative split 😬 I was hoping to be under 20 minutes, but because I took out the race a little hot this did not surprise me at all. More corral A males were gaining on me and the top elite female group was 1-a few minutes ahead of me and then the rest of the elite females were behind me at this point.

-Mile 5: Woah, I’m tired & basically alone. Can I still push? You’re falling off pace Amanda- get it together…😑 ⠀

-Mile 6: So tired 😓 Keep that dude from corral A in your sight…Oh man a 6:35 mile… now you need to basically sprint to have any hope of sub 40.

-Mile 6-6.2: I saw the clock say 38:25 at mile 6 & I knew it would be close 🤞🏻 I think I was a little aggressive pace-wise in the beginning of the race. But I gave it everything I had the last 0.2 miles. My husband apparently saw me when I made this realization and start to kick it in because I took two more photos (below)…

I ended up at 40:20, which was 21 seconds over my goal and an nice positive split of 20 flat for the first 5k and 20:20 for the second 5k , but I’m still proud of myself for this effort on tired marathon legs! A 3 minute 10k PR on tired legs gives me hope for future races! 🏃🏼‍♀️

Post-Race

My good friend and fellow Heartbreaker teammate Emily also ran this race on tired marathon legs and earned a PR, so naturally we took a photo together!

Then, they had beer, canned Moscow Mules, and other goodies for us post-race. I went to find my warm-ups because I was surprisingly chilled post-race. The weather on this late summer race felt more fall-like than today’s weather to be honest, but we are only two days into fall, so I guess we need to give it time.

Overall, I cannot wait to run the Mag Mile 10k again. It was flat, fast, and fun! 🙂 Have you run the Run Mag Mile 10k before?!

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Motivational Monday #6 & post-collegiate running

Good afternoon friends and happy Monday!  🙂 For those of you who have not run yet, but are planning to (myself included) I have some Monday running motivation coming your way!

Before starting this post, I had just gotten back from 3.5 hours of nutrition classes and as I laid out all my human anatomy notes to start a study session I thought to myself “I wish I was running now instead of studying, I feel unfocused anyway”. Now, I was planning for today to be a rest day as lately my goal has been at least 3 days of running per week with 1-2 days of cross training and rest days as needed. After yesterday’s run I thought I’d need a rest day, but today my body is telling me just the opposite. I am craving a good, mind clearing run down by the lake and through some crunchy leaves. So I am going to listen to my body today! I know that I will not have a productive study session unless I run first. This quote I found on Pinterest shares what I am feeling today more eloquently than what I just said above. Maybe it will also inspire some of you wanting to run right now to just get up and GO! I will be doing that as soon as this post publishes. 🙂

motivation3

what running is like for me now after 4 years of collegiate XC running

It has been so weird this year to not have a college cross country season to train for and instead of running 50+ miles per week I am lucky to run 15-20 miles per week now. I’m in such a different place than last year with harder classes, a commute to and from class, and a part time job, but I will always be a runner. I think I just thought I would continue to run a lot of races post college and have more time to train than I do right now. In college I just had to attend class, study, go to mandatory cross country practices, and work 10-15 hours per week (but it was on campus work study so I could do my homework). Also, I was not expecting to get such a nasty case of IT Band tendonitis after my first half marathon in June. Since my injury healed in August, I feel like I have been struggling to get back into long distance shape for the last two months (but again this is coming from a girl who was used to running 5-10+ miles at 6-8 min/mile pace nearly everyday in college).

I have so many running goals that I have yet to achieve and I do not want college to have been my prime running years! In fact, yesterday, my boyfriend and I were even talking about how we’d like to run the Chicago Marathon next year if possible even though we will both probably still be working part time jobs and still in school. I think since we are volunteering at the Chicago Marathon this Sunday and watching his mom run that will really inspire us to pursue the goal of running it in 2015! It would be my first marathon and my boyfriend’s second. Regardless I cannot wait for Sunday!

Right now, though, I just want to stay healthy and IT band tendonitis free. I had four wonderful years of injury free DI college cross country running (although track is an entirely different story- a lot of injuries there) and for that I am grateful! For now my running goals are simpler and that is ok. I just want to get out there as much as possible. Currently, I run for the stress relief,  a break from studying,  beautiful scenery, and the fresh air. I will jump back into the racing scene later this fall or next spring at the latest.  Well, have a great Monday everyone. It’s time for me to lace up my shoes and run. 🙂

What are your current motivations for running (or working out in general)?