Race Report: IBM Uptown Classic

October 19, 2008 at 3:26 pm | Posted in Product Review, Racing | 12 Comments

Time of Day: 8:00 AM

Weather Conditions: Almost unreasonably perfect

Distance: 10K (6.2 miles)

Chip Time: 40:13 (BAH! So close)

Finish Place: Overall-102/1588; Females-9/722; Age Group-2/55

Notes: First of all, thanks so much to all of you who wished me luck. I expect full race reports from all of you who raced this weekend! Good job, Justy2003 (read her report in the comments section). Now that I’ve collapsed for several hours, had about four cups of coffee, and am recovered enough to write this….HOLY CRAP I FORGOT HOW FREAKING FUN IT IS TO RACE!

Like I said last night, this was my first race in about a year, which was a half marathon last November. I haven’t done a 10K in at least a year and a half and had no idea what to expect from myself. Also, this is the first race that I have attended alone. I thought this might throw a few curveballs at me, but I dodged them by parking close enough to be able to leave all my stuff in the car. I did, however, miss my mom, who is the only non-runner I’ve ever met who actually enjoys watching races. Good job, Mumsly!

Speaking of stuff, here’s what I brought: race bib, safety pins, and map (of course), Gatorade and water, Snickers Marathon bar for before, Myoplex bar for after, Nano for warming up (didn’t use it), extra socks (a habit leftover from cross-country), and chapstick (God forbid I have dry lips!). Also, a carefully chosen long-sleeved t-shirt for warming up. I chose one from a half marathon to intimidate the other runners. I also brought a sweatshirt from college cross-country, also in hopes of intimidation. I didn’t end up warming up in either of them, so I flexed my biceps extra hard instead while I jogged (about 1.5 miles).

Pre-race fuel: I can’t have much in my tummy before a race, so I ate the Snickers Marathon bar in the car on the way there and then switched to liquid calories (about half my Gatorade) upon arrival. The Snickers? Most delicious candy energy bar I’ve ever tasted. Basically, a Snickers chocolate bar with added protein and vitamins (and less saturated fat!).

I got to IBM an hour and 15 minutes before the start to ensure good parking. There were lots of people there already! I also hit the port-a-potties early, and was thankful that I did so when the line stretched across the road right before the start.

In typical Jess fashion, I competitively pushed my way to the front of the start chute. Move, people, these elbows are pointy. Of course I belong here! Do you not see these biceps? I want to stand by the skinny men wearing racing flats and sponsorship shirts. Oh hey, there’s Chris Kimbrough! I’ll move aside for her…I guess…like an inch to the side. Not Governor Rick Perry though. Nope.

The first mile was awful. My body is just not used to running at a sub-6:30/mile pace. Bah! Why do I not do speedwork!? But, my lungs suddenly expanded after the first mile and I started passing people. I’d say that very few people passed me after the first mile and I ran a nice, even pace (6:25/mile for the first half; 6:28/mile for the second half).

I was just over 20 minutes at the 5K mark (20:02). Nice! That would have been a good 5K time for me, once upon a time. My thoughts, and likely the thoughts of everyone else: “Why don’t I just run 5Ks? I would be done now.”

In a 10K, I start really hurting around Mile 4. No exception today, but I held on and found another female to chase. I passed her in the last mile.

But then she passed me back. 😦 Her legs came up to my shoulders, but I’m not going to pretend that height matters that much in distance running. Luckily, she wasn’t in my age group. That would have been really upsetting.

My stomach hurt at the finish. Also, my left bicep (too much flexing?). Knee and foot were both fine! The tall chick gave me a Pity High-Five. She held her hand at waist level; I had to stretch up. She looked lovely and fresh; I was red and my bangs were waving at spectators.

I’m only semi-pleased with my finish time. It’s a good time, but I can’t help wishing I’d pushed it at some point to make up those 14 seconds. I recovered really quickly at the finish line, which is a sign that I could have gone faster. I guess I should be happy about this, considering I have a half marathon in just two weeks(!). Also, I just really wanted to finish without hurting my foot, and so far, so good. I slammed the Ozarka handed to me and jogged for about 6 minutes to cooldown. My stomach felt gross. Possibly from attempting to run immediately after drinking an entire bottle of water.

After cooling down, I went on a hunt for Race Swag and free food. One of the sponsors was Michelangelo’s, maker of frozen lasagna. The food tent was full of their (cooked) products. Sooo not what my upset tummy wanted at 9 AM. Besides, I already know what Michelangelo’s tastes like: burned on the outside, frozen in the middle. Poor Mumsly, she had to make Michelangelo’s a staple convenience carbohydrate as she attempted to fuel a distance runner, a distance swimmer, and a soccer midfielder. We fought over those evenly cooked pieces, darn it, and then wash them down with Little Debbie’s. Instead of lasagna, I grabbed some orange slices and another free t-shirt. I do, however, have a coupon for Michelangelo’s in my race packet. I intend on using it, and this time I will get all the evenly cooked pieces! Do you hear me, Midfielder and Swimmer!?

Because they were supposed to be soon, I decided to stay for awards and use the time to stretch. I do want to be able to run again someday, after all. I also walked to the car for my Myoplex and the rest of my Gatorade. The awards were a good 20 minutes late, but Chris Kimbrough was STILL cooling down and so her FOUR CHILDREN accepted her 1st place award in her stead. Yes, four. Age guesstimates: 3-7 years old? Seriously. Superwoman. And I was so proud of making myself for my 6 minute cooldown too.

So what does 2nd place in the 20-24 category get? A trophy? No. A medal? No. An IBM thumb drive? Of course, what else? Weirdest race prize ever. I think I’ll buy it a chain and wear it around my neck.

And now I’ve decided to stop talking about myself *gasp!* and proclaim that IBM did an amazing job of putting on this event. The course was great, well-marked, and well-managed. The race packet contained plentiful Swag. There was plenty of water and plenty of port-a-potties. If you’ve raced before, you know the port-a-potty situation can make or break an event. In addition, the race raised over $45,000 for the Central Texas Red Cross.

So, if you ever want to participate in a race in Austin, TX, this is a good one. There’s also a 5K.



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  1. Yay! Congrats on getting back into racing! And awesome time! Way to go for getting 2nd in your age group!
    At the 5k I ran yesterday they had pasta, too! In addition to fried chicken, cookies, etc. At 9 AM?! I was confused by that. I found fruit and bagels there as well, thank goodness. Who can eat pasta/fried chicken at 9 am?? Is that a normal thing at races? I was confused.
    Loved the race report…can’t wait to see more! 🙂

  2. Fantastic run!!! You’ll make up those 14 seconds next time, enjoy your 2nd place!! 🙂

  3. EXCELLENT race! and, a super-fun-to-read race report 🙂 i enjoy feeling vicariously fast through reading your blog!!!

  4. Thanks everyone!
    And yes! I’ve seen burgers and beer too! And people actually consuming these things. They should serve pancakes and coffee.

  5. Way to go speedy!!!!!! that is AWESOME, it must feel sooooo good to have come in and raced so well!!! esp after not racing for so long:) and the time is super!!!! so even tho you have the goal for 40 min, you can def be happy where you are and still have something to work for 🙂 i think a 40 min 10k is my goal, too, altho you don’t find as many 10k races as 5ks or half marathons. anyway… HEY!!! yay:) CONGRATS! and what the heck is a thumb drive?!

  6. congrats on the run! i know what you mean about how it feels good to race again…i have a 10k that i’m training for on thanksgiving so i hope it goes as well as yours!!!

    and awesome that you got second, but thumb drive? wear it with pride baby! hehe!

  7. A thumb drive, huh? How practical! 🙂
    Congratulations. It sounds awesome!

  8. dear seejessrun,



  9. Thanks all!
    MizFit: I will so be your running “accountability partner.” 😉

  10. CONGRATS!!!!!!!! you are so freaking speedy!! awesome job on a great race and a #2 AG finish!

  11. Your race stories are great! I really enjoyed reading this one… you’re a funny lady!!

    Congrats on a great time and a (weird) prize.

  12. […] IBM Classic. No DRC […]

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