Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Shamrock Shuffle 8k 2016

This was my 5th time running the Shuffle- the only year I didn't run it was 2014 when I ran the Knoxville Marathon. (Race recaps here: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015) It's a race I enjoy immensely since it is practically in my backyard (logistics are a dream!), it's well organized,  and because the course is entirely not on the lakefront.

L and I went to the expo on Friday and we ran into Eric. We had our game faces on.

Sunday morning we got ready and scooted over to the meetup for MRC/anyone else who wanted to join us.
I wore my new Mikkeller Running Club singlet, which I had only previously worn for the F^3 half back in January. It was cold out. Like 30's and a little windy. Pretty much exactly the same or very similar to last year.
We took a team #mrcchicago photo before we scampered off to our corrals. I cannot say enough how awesome this running club is.
After our team photo, I dumped my bag at gear check, contemplated using the portapotty one last time (but didn't because of long lines) and got into the corral. While waiting and freezing my ass off in corral A, I ran into Eric and Pete and we chatted a bit. Pete had just spotted Desi, and I tried to look for her doing strides through the fence, but she likely had just wrapped up her warmup.
Going into this race I didn't have a goal. I knew this would be the first year I would not PR either because I've gotten to that point as a runner where you have to do focused training to PR for whatever goal youre chasing. Ive been marathon training and not running much more than 5K pace for speed work. Where as had I been training for a 5K i would have been running speed work 20-30 seconds faster than that. I also didn't want to jeopardize my health for Carmel. I set a loose goal of 36:00-30 but in reality I just wanted to run a nice tempo, whatever pace that ended up being.
Spliz from the race- they are accurate, the distance not so much due to the buildings/tunnel.

I took off and Eric darted ahead, I figured I wouldn't see him the rest of the race- and just tried to settle into a comfy hard pace, which is so hard given that it was cold, and I did not warm up at all beforehand. I knew my garmin would be useless for pace, so I set it to "manual lap" so at least I could have accurate mile splits as long as I remembered to lap the miles.

Goal forever and always is to negative split races, so my plan by mile 3.5 was to start pushing the pace. Of course mile 3.5 is where we were running into a brisk headwind. Oh well. I charged on. Somewhere on Michigan Ave I passed Eric and then we started fartleking back and forth. He ended up out sprinting me to the finish by 2 seconds. I really wish I had tried to pass him earlier since he was 15-20 feet ahead of me the entire race and it could have been fun to push each other more earlier. Next time. Challenge ON!
I ended up finishing in 35:29, which was 12 seconds off my PR. WUT?! I for some reason thought my PR was 34:xx and figured there was no was I could have touched that- guess I should double check my blog stats pre race next time. I felt way too comfortable during the race and could have easily shaved off more time- but I am really happy with how I felt and how I performed for this race.

I was once again concerned about the "Mikkeller Salute" on the back of my singlet, but at least 5 people came up to me during the race and said "awesome shirt" or "I ran fast to catch up to you to tell you your shirt is cool." It was fun spreading our club love out on the streets of Chicago during a race. I hope we have some new folks join us in May.

Official Stats:

Time: 35:29
46 of 2718 AG
211 of 13,527 women
1150 of 23462 OA

Once I finished I grabbed some snacks and stared heading back to bag check when I ran into more MRC folks. We eventually got stopped by a camera man and may be appearing in an ad for the Shamrock next year. "We'll be back.... Next year!"

Our Mikkeller Running club teams came in 14th and 26th places and kicked major ass.
Post race we got our beer flavored kool aid and waited for everyone to show up. We also supplemented with our own hydration before heading to Kaiser Tiger for our celebratory team lunch.

"Can we go drink in the park now?"
After lunch and some additional rehydration we landed at Goose for one final beer. Did I already mention that we have the best running club ever? I'm serious. I had no idea that this run club would turn into so much more than just a first Saturday gathering. 
After a fun day, it was time for puppy snuggles.

  • Ate a powerbar oatmeal pouch thing 2.5 hours pre race + some osmo pre load.
  • Ate a GU 15 min pre race
  • Did not take any water/gatorade at the aid stations since it was a short race.
  • Wore my nike hyperwarm + MRC singlet, felt hot by mile 3.
  • Wore my Track n Field tights + nike lunar tempo shoes
  • Owl head hat FTW

Next race: Carmel marathon next Saturday!



  1. I would love to witness a duel between you and Eric someday when you both are actually "racing" a race. Anyway, it's funny how we both ran faster than our goals at the Shuffle. I went out at a PR pace, but with no real expectations/plan of what I would do after mile 2. Maybe that's the way to run most races?! Can't believe Carmel is coming up so quickly! Woo hoo! :)

  2. Wow, 12 seconds away from your PR? You and Emmers both! :) I have vague ideas about what my PRs are, but don't know them off the top of my head without checking my blog either (although I've also wondered if maybe Anne T's-last-name gets new PRs, in which case all of my races are PRs for a while haha).

    Of course people were commenting on your singlet! When I wore the WRCE shirts (back when we were a thing), I got a lot of comments too. That's cool that people were catching you just to say something! :)

  3. Nice splits! And I think it's good you didn't check the PR so you could just focus on the tempo-ish pace and not PRing. And enjoy it, like you did :) Next year you can PR if you want! :)

    I am not surprised people comment on your shirts. It's a very telling way to tell if someone will fit in in your club, don't you think - if they like the shirts? Keep the squares out! LOL! Hope you guys are in the vid!

  4. This race looks like fun! I would say based off of your time that you are ready for a great marathon. :-)

  5. Great job!!!!! Your running club looks like a great group of people! Good luck next weekend, too! :-)