Race Report: Pints to Pasta 10k (The one in which I surprise myself)

I surprised myself this weekend.  I ran the Pints to Pasta 10k on Sunday and managed to pull out a much better performance than I had anticipated.

Kudos to anyone who recognizes what my tattoo is.

Looking serious before the start. Kudos to anyone who recognizes what my tattoo is.

I say that because I have not been ‘officially’ training for this race.  I’ve been focusing very specifically on building my weekly mileage at the expense of any real speedwork or fine-tuning for any performance peak.  I plan to add more variety (including speedwork) back to my training techniques once I’m comfortable averaging right around 40-43 miles per week on a consistent basis.  I signed up for this 10k knowing full well that was my plan and, as such, I expected that my pace would be slow, but I still wanted to participate in the event regardless.

But, I repeat, I surprised myself.  I ended up finishing several minutes faster than I expected and even had (what I consider to be) a decent showing in the final rankings.  Here’s how it fleshed out:

  • Finish Time:  50:44
  • Average Pace:  8:10
  • Overall Finish: 299 out of 1738
  • Age/Gender Group Finish:  18 out of 203
Reuniting with Mr. Move Eat Create after the finish.

Reuniting with Mr. Move Eat Create after the finish.

This was my first 10k race, since I jumped right from 5ks to half-marathons and then the full marathon in my running, and I will say that I was pleased to see how much I enjoyed racing this distance.  The route was quite enjoyable, too.  We started in North Portland, headed South, crossed the Broadway Bridge, and then headed further South along the waterfront.

Yes, that’s right, we crossed a bridge.  This is another reason that I surprised myself.

Let me explain.

I am TERRIFIED of water and, by extension, bridges.  While various things may freak me out to some extent, this is my major fear.  I don’t know how to swim (no triathlons in my future!) and deep water really unnerves me.  I cross the various Portland bridges by car or bus almost every day to commute across town, but crossing one on foot felt even scarier to me.  I was definitely intimidated by the prospect, but decided to look at it as another challenge to conquer.  I even managed for a short time to look out over the side of the bridge at the Willamette River below without getting overwhelmed by the watery aisle of terror and death that flowed beneath my feet, and without hesitating in my stride one bit.

Shannon = 1, Scary Water = 0

Fun Morning!

Fun morning!

Another thing that stands out for me about this race was my prowess on hill inclines.  Now, this race was not very hilly at all, but where hills did exist, I was quite happy with how I took them.  I managed to gain some solid momentum on the elevation increases and passed quite a few other runners in those key spots.  Living in a hilly neighborhood is paying off!

Overall, this 10k was a big win for me.  Beautiful day, fun course, and to top it all off, with today’s race I have now logged over 1000 miles for the year

Not bad.

28 comments on “Race Report: Pints to Pasta 10k (The one in which I surprise myself)

  1. I feel your pain in running across bridges; I’ve been working to conquer it this summer to help mix up my running routes. I recently learned of a 10k in Astoria where the route goes over the bridge there (I think it’s called the Columbia Crossing 10k). Now that seems scary – that bridge is so long and so tall… Something for the running bucket list!

  2. playfulpups says:

    Great job with a great time!! I am terrified of bridges if I am in a car…for some reason, I think of water pressure building up around me, and not being able to roll my window down, so I always drive over a bridge with my window down…just in case. 🙂

  3. pauldburton says:

    Well done, indeed. Good result.

  4. Way to go! That’s awesome that you faced your fear!

  5. TartanJogger says:

    Well done, great result! 🙂

  6. Super! Great time! I think 10K is a great race distance. 5K’s are fun, but 10K’s feel more “real”.

    • Absolutely. I really like going long. I definitely see myself as more of a marathon girl, but this distance was a great way to race without having to invest quite as much time/energy in the event. Plus, I never really hit my groove until after 2 miles anyway, in a 5k, I feel like I’m just getting started when I hit the finish line.

  7. Falyn says:

    Love the tattoo:). Way to go on the race!

  8. Sounds like a great event for you! I liked the photos because you look like you really enjoyed it. I am wracking my brain trying to think of what your tattoo is but I give up!

  9. Alaina Maeve says:

    Fantastic, Shannon! You are super speedy! Pints to Pasta is one of my all-time favorite Portland races (used to be my Absolute favorite when I ate pasta and drank beer, but that is in the past), and this was the first year I did not participate! P2P s a race I have always done on my own, and had a wonderful time. Congrats on the time and the bridge crossing. 😉

    • Thanks, Alaina. Sorry you missed it this year – though I’m sure it’s for the greater good of the training plan! 🙂 It was a great event and I definitely think I’ll run it again next year.

  10. Congrats, Shannon! What an amazing day for you. It looks like all of your hard work is really paying off.

  11. Joanne says:

    Whoa!! Way to face your fears AND run an awesome race!! You totally rocked it!

  12. nancytex2013 says:

    Congrats on an awesome job both running the race in great time AND facing your fears! Very inspiring!

  13. Excellent 10K time. Great that running over the bridges and being in that mental space to get you across without fear.

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