Pacers First Down 5k & Combine Race Report

Superbowl?  The only things I know about the Superbowl would be what I hear on WTOP to and from choreography jobs.  You all should be impressed I can tell you who was playing, the Seahawks & the Patriots, and no I didn’t google it.

So what does one do on Superbowl Sunday if they have no vested interest in anything having to do with sports?  Run a 5k of course!

And this was not any 5k.  Pacers had this little cross training challenge at the end which was optional for all runners: 20 push-ups, 20 jump squats, 20 sit-ups, and 20 yd walking lunges, hence the name First Down 5k & Combine.

Based on the ease I had picking up my packet the day of the Fairfax Four Miler also run by Pacers I decided to try my luck again and do packet pick-up right before the race.

This would be my first race in DC proper and since metro didn’t quite open early enough to trust it for a 8am start I decided to drive in.  Luck for me I live just across the river and within 15 minutes of leaving my building I had found free parking on a side street about half a mile from the start line.

After two easy pre-race packet pick-ups in a row I refuse to chalk it up to luck and fully credit Pacers with awesome organization and efficiency combined with spectacular volunteers!



The only thing I didn’t plan for was what to do with my nifty race tech shirt that I got.  Well the cold temperature solved that for me and I put it on over the 4 layers I was already wearing.  I am cold my nature so my outfit for the day included two pairs of socks, running tights with windbreaker pants over, sports bra coved by tank top covered by long sleeve cold weather tech shirt covered by long sleeve Wine & Dine tech shirt covered by running jacket, gloves and hat.  You may start laughing when you hear it was 32 degrees but I was only slightly warm for the race.  (Next time I will skip one of the shirts.)

My cold self was thrilled to see they had hot apple cider available at the start & finish!  I also enjoyed watching a man juggling three full size footballs.  I would later see him running the whole race juggling them! I also saw one of the Nats presidents ready to run, I guess he is in training for when baseball season starts.



The race was a beautiful flat out & back course with a water stop about half way through. I even saw my apartment while running along the river!



I stuck to the 5 minute run/1 min walk intervals I had set on my Garmin and ran a pretty even 10:10 pace.  Considering I had basically taken a week and a half off any training due to life I was amazed every time I looked down.  I felt good but figured I must be going slower than usual because there were times I was basically alone on the course.  It never occurred to me it was just a small race field, for this area at least.

I crossed in 32:41 and after waffling the whole run on whether to do the combine or not made a “game time” decision to give it a try.  I am so glad I did, it was fun!


I completed each station and got a mark on my bib from the referees to prove it and then headed across the last finish line.


Little did I know they would be throwing me a miniature football as I ran across.  Then something amazing happened: I CAUGHT IT! I have the worst hand eye coordination ever but I caught it.



I did have trouble finding water after the race, but I am chalking that up to me being so short I couldn’t see what was probably right in front of me.  No hard feelings though because I wanted some more of that apple cider! They also had bananas and Nature Valley bars available.

I was feeling good and decided to take a stroll around the reflection pool before heading back to my car.

IMG_2335 IMG_2334

It’s easy to forget how cool DC is sometimes.

I got home to lounge around a bit and discovered results were already posted and I had a new 5k PR!!! Talk about a shock!



Thanks to Pacers Running for another awesome race experience!  Next year I will need some kind of football jersey to sport during the race.

Keep it fast & fierce!

-Little Red

Have you ever had a surprise PR? What was your favorite part of Superbowl Sunday?


Virtual Reality

The calendar may be leading up to Christmas, when most people take a break or vacation.  For me the calendar is also leading up to the Rock ‘n’ Roll DC Half Marathon.  So while I may be on break from work, my training days keep popping up on my calendar.

I’ve found that one of the most successful ways for me to ensure getting my workout in is to have a calendar alert go off at the beginning of the day.  Luckily all of my apple products make that an easy task, so I have a separate Fitness based calendar exclusively for my various healthy exploits.

Today while out on a training run I was listening to the Mickey Miles Podcast (seriously this podcast rocks even if you don’t plan to run disney) and it happened to be an episode where they had Jeff Galloway on to answer runner questions.

Awesome dinosaur lights I saw on my run.  They pretty much win christmas.

Awesome dinosaur lights I saw on my run. They pretty much win christmas.

Well in addition to the questions, which he is awesome at answering, he also had a little plug for a new race series the Jeff Galloway 13.1 and the Barb’s 3.1.  While the inaugural races just took place in Atlanta they are offering an opportunity to be an inaugural runner by participating in virtual version of the races.

I was intrigued and definitely checked out the website.  I’m thinking I will probably do the virtual 5k, since that is an easy training run for me, and maybe drawn to the 13.1 because really its an inaugural race, and Jeff Galloway, and why not!  I’ve never done a virtual race before so this will be an adventure for me.

Keep it focused & fierce!

-Little Red

Have you ever participated in a virtual race? What running podcasts do you listen to?


Trying To Take On Everest?

The email!!

The email!!

Did you get the reminder email today?

The reminder to sign up for the final run of runDisney’s Expedition Everest Challenge.

I’ve always been curious about this one as it looks like pure fun: a 5k through Animal Kingdom Park at night, plus some fun obstacles, a clue solving mission, add an after-hours party in the park, the ability to run as a team, and of course a dose of Disney magic… who could resist.

I’m 99% sure I’ve convinced my dad to be my teammate.  It was a lot easier to do after I assured him this on was only a 5k, not the 13.1 miles he ran with me for the Wine & Dine Half Marathon.

This is all assuming of course we can get in! Being the final run ever of this event it is bound to be popular.

You can find all the details here at runDisney Expedition Everest Challenge.

Are you planning to register? Will you be waiting at a computer at 12noon on the dot? What runDisney event are you most curious about?

Fingers crossed for dad & I to get in, I’m off to think of a team name!

Keep it fierce (just like the Yeti).

-Little Red

Back In The Game

First off my apologies for the weeklong or more absence.  To say I was a little rattled by the fainting episode is an understatement.  I decided to give myself a full week off of Insanity or any exercise in order to be absolutely sure it wouldn’t happen again.  Especially considering the air conditioning in my building was not working and they think heat might have been a trigger for the collapse.

But here I am back to it.  Man I forgot how hard Insanity was.  How does one forget that?  Well I was at a point where I was feeling strong and ready for the daily challenges.  Now I feel weak and ill prepared.  But I have faith my strength will come back and I am still completing the workouts and burning a ton of calories, even if I am taking more breaks and breathing heavier.

I had an amazing 5k this past Sunday at the Girls on the Run Taste of Arlington.  Not time wise but feeling wise and I sincerely have Triple A to thank for that.  It was my first workout of any effort other than walking and so I was running by feel, a bit of a forced situation as my HR monitor was acting up.  It felt so good to be out moving.  We had some great conversation and it was inspiring to see all those girls and family members finishing a goal! (I am so behind on recaps but I promise soon).

So as I contemplate the ability of standing after Max Cardio Conditioning I leave you hoping you find your inspiration to finish your goals whatever they may be.


Keep it fit & fierce!

-Little Red