What’s up? I’m still here, still running! This weekend I ran the MCM 10k, the 10k event that goes hand in hand with the Marine Corps Marathon. If you remember back to last year, I needed a chance to redeem myself. It wasn’t the full marathon, but it was still exciting to somehow be a part of all the action. I was lucky enough to score a bib from the folks at Aetna who sponsored the race, so thanks to them for this opportunity!
This year, they moved the race expo over to the National Harbor, which is outside of DC. For the people who drove there, the traffic was pretty bad and parking was tough. I took the metro instead and it was really easy with the free shuttles. There was no line at bib pickup, so that process took 2 minutes. The expo floor was a different story; it was totally anxiety-inducing from being so crowded. My priorities were to get my IT band taped at the KT Tape booth, and stop by the Aetna table for my team shirt. Once that mission was done, it took me a long time to make my way through all of the fun stuff.
The nearest metro stop to the starting line was the Pentagon Station, but once you got off the train, there was still a very long walk to the official start. I actually ran my Garmin watch during the walk to the starting line and it was over a mile! Once at the start line, I was really relieved to see more port-a-potties than I had ever seen in my life. But then I panicked when I realized almost all of them were out of toilet paper!!! These are the same bathrooms that the marathoners had to use before us, so they used all of the paper. For next year, you might wanna consider bringing some backup toilet paper. You runners know that’s no joke.
The new 10k course didn’t go into Washington DC at all, it was just through the suburb of Arlington. There was only one section that went through a park and was actually scenic, the rest was boring streets and highways. The first half of the course was a steady gradual uphill but the second was mostly downhill. I ran negative splits, clocked mile 5 at 10:36 pace so yay!
My official race time was quite slow because I logged 6.7 miles due to all of the bobbing and weaving through the crowds, but I’m really happy with my Garmin time. This was my first time participating in the MCM events, so seeing all of the cute Marines was fun. They are lined up on both sides of the finish chute clapping for you the whole time, and then they put the medal actually on you. I kind of felt like I didn’t deserve al of that for only running the 10k. By the way, I saw everyone else taking selfies with “their Marine” so I had to do it too, haha.
I was doing this race solo so I grabbed my beer, ate my snacks, and hustled home. I tried to catch my marathon friend going through the Pentagon area but was too confused about the way the course zigged back and forth and missed her completely. Spectating the race takes so much planning!
I finished this race feeling strong and with no pain, so hopefully I can keep up this training through winter and finally have more good runs.