Race Recap: The Charles Street 12. AKA: “Chuck” because we’re on familiar terms like that.

I’m baaaaaaaaaack. Did you miss me?

Sometime in the middle of last week I realized that I REALLY needed a vacation. Like not an actual go-someplace vacation, but just a break from the stress of my job vacation. So I took off work and for the past 4 days my fingertips have touched nary a keyboard and it has been glorious. I was still hanging around on Insta and Facebook though because obviously fun doesn’t REALLY happen unless you document it someplace for everyone to see. I had a LOT of fun over the weekend. Maybe you saw. I RAN IN A RACE.

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The Charles Street 12 was the final event in Charm City Run’s B3 series and I was going to finish this thing if I had to drag my bad foot behind me all the way to the end.

Charles Street is a historic road that starts up near where I live in the county and travels down to the Harbor and probably beyond that too, but I don’t feel like traipsing through those neighborhoods to find out where it stops. The course is advertised as being DOWNHILL!! Like here’s the elevation chart from the website:

elevationLooks easy, right? It’s kind of deceiving. This downhill consists of a lot of rolling hills, some of which are pretty rough especially right at the beginning. I considered running it last year when my longest run had only been 7 miles and now I’m kind of glad I didn’t.

All deceiving downhill aside, the course is an absolute blast to run on. Being from Baltimore and traveling this route thousands of times in my life, it was so much fun to run along where I would normally be in a car though maybe not so fun for all the people that were stuck in their cars waiting for us all to run by. People were pissed. It’s like they had no idea this would be going on, which I find strange considering that there were a couple thousand participants and it’s not the first time this has ever happened.

Being that it is a point-to-point, Charm City Run kindly organized a bus service for all the runners. We could leave our cars at one of the many parking garages right near the finish, take a free bus to the start where there would be a bag check, and then our bags would be shipped down to the finish for us to pick up when we were done. It was very well organized, there was no wait for a bus at all (at least not when I was down there) and I easily collected my stuff at the end. The only thing that could have made this more awesome is if I didn’t live like a 5 minute drive from the starting line. Waking up at 4am to drive downtown, drop my car, then taking a bus basically back to my house only to run downtown again to pick it up was a little weird. But at least I got to ride the bus with AMBER!

meamber

If you have never read Amber’s blog, I suggest you visit her immediately. I suspected she would be one of the nicest people ever and was not disappointed.

The race started at 7:30. I had received an email from Charm City Run to meet at their tent at 7am for a photo with a bunch of other runners from my area. That’s how I randomly ended up in the same picture as Stacey and we somehow didn’t know who each other were. My excuse is that I was still half asleep.

Photo courtesy of Charm City Run. She's in the pink headband literally RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME.

Photo courtesy of Charm City Run. Stacey is in the pink headband literally RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME. So many great running bloggers live near me!

Right at 7:30 they began the usual pre-race announcements and singing of the National Anthem. As tired as I was, there was so much great energy out there and the weather was absolute perfection; sunny and 68 degrees. I had been walking around on my tip toes for about 20 minutes before the start in the hopes of loosening up my foot. I figured I would take the first mile nice and slow because I was expecting it to give me problems. And it did. But also just as I expected that mile was really all I needed to get it warmed up. I bid farewell to my friend Trish who I had been running with and picked up my pace a little bit.

With no time goal in mind I was so relaxed and having such a good time. During mile 3 I ran into my friend Mikey who lives in Virginia and I haven’t seen him in like a decade! Awesome!! So I ran with him for most of that mile and we chatted it up. I had never actually run in a race with friends before and now I see why people enjoy it.

After I left Mikey, I was solo for the rest of the time and still I was having a blast singing along to my music, smiling at all the familiar places I was passing and at handfuls of people cheering along the way. I was actually kind of surprised at the lack of crowd support on the course. There was some, but I guess I was expecting more people out there since Charles Street is a major road. The ones that were out there were definitely enthusiastic though as were the volunteers at the many well-stocked water stations. Carrying water would not have been necessary. (Good thing because I didn’t have any.)

Everything was going great. My foot felt good. My splits were good. Then I hit 9 miles and I could feel that my eyes were kind of glazing over. I had FINALLY picked up a pair of running sunglasses on Friday and I was so happy that I had them on because I’m sure I looked like I was in pain. My longest distance since May was 10 miles and I was hoping that I would be able to hold it together for just 2 miles past that, but as it turned out…not so much. I totally bricked on the last part of the course, which was mostly flat but felt extra challenging after dealing with all the hills. I walked a little and at first I was really disappointed in myself, but then I remembered what I had set out to do that day anyway and that was just to make it through. I wasn’t walking because my foot hurt; I was walking because I was just mentally not all there and that was 100x better than being in pain.

The last mile passed through Harborplace which is one of my favorite places on the planet to run. I noticed all these people in crazy costumes and at first I thought I might be hallucinating, but then I remembered that the Otakon anime convention was in town. At this point there were lots of spectators and I’ll be damned if I’m going to finish a race walking, so I dug down deep for whatever I might have had left. My finish time:

watch

I’ll take it! It’s way better than I thought I’d do going in. And you know what else I’ll take?

photo 1

Bling bling thank you very much! The Charles Street 12 medals are amazing (and sparkly!) and that’s my B3 medal for completing the series.

In addition to the medals, this race and series had great premiums:

premium

An awesome UA logo HeatGear jacket and that sweet backpack that is now my gym bag. Thank goodness because my other bag was getting gross.

It was time to party! I love Charm City Run’s post-race parties. As is my tradition, I grabbed a beer and then proceeded to only have a sip of it because I hate beer. Then I met up with Amber, Trish, and Lisa! Lisa rocks and if you don’t already know her blog, you should! Trish doesn’t have a blog yet. I’ll have to work on that.

photo 3

L to R: Trish (who needs a blog), Amber, me, and Lisa!

My lovely sister-in-law was watching Betty for the morning so I had a little bit of time to hang out with friends – and drink some wine – before heading home. It was really the perfect day. Fun course, the best weather ever (it seriously feels more like early October than August which scares me a little for what is to come this winter), awesome people, and great post-race festivities that included boxed lunches and live entertainment. The only thing I might have changed is having volunteers right at the finish handing out water because the moment I crossed that finish line, all I wanted was water and I had to walk for a bit before I found anyone that had it.

Will I run this again next year? YOU BETCHA! I’ll be signing up for the B3 series again too because between all the races and swag you get, it’s totally worth the price. If you live anywhere near Baltimore, you should run it too!

Here are my recaps of the other two races in the series:

Kelly St. Patrick’s Day 5K

Sole of the City 10K

Did you run or race this weekend? I want to hear about it! I have so many blogs to catch up on…I’ve missed you guys!

xo,
Salt

Oh and PS…Sweaty Bands giveaways ends TONIGHT! Click here if you haven’t entered yet!

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76 thoughts on “Race Recap: The Charles Street 12. AKA: “Chuck” because we’re on familiar terms like that.

  1. txa1265 says:

    Awesome job – funny how you have trained yourself back up to a certain level and once you hit those limits it is like your own ‘wall’. Good to see you pushed through and got to meet up with friends!

    We had another college tour – and trip to Providence RI and Boston MA, which was awesome (except for the many, many hours of driving!).

    Good for you taking a mini-vacation!

    • runsaltrun says:

      Haha I had no idea that a 12 mile race would have a wall, but I definitely plowed into it! I still had the best day though. I’m just so thankful to have been out there. 🙂

      I’m glad you had a great travel weekend! I would love to visit either of those places!

  2. SuzLyfe says:

    I am so happy that you were able to run this, and even though, sure, it was difficult, I think that the fact that it was so made you just the little bit happy–made you feel like you were a part of it again 😀 And we all need a mini vacation–I seem to be taking them on basis that is less that conducive to productivity, but hey, you know what? If you can, you should–we do so much on a regular basis that we deserve to give ourselves the benefit of a chill time when we can.
    And I told Lisa this, but I am so jealous of the meet up!

    • runsaltrun says:

      I totally agree. The only time I’ve had off from work lately has mostly consisted of doctor appointments which obviously is no fun. It felt so good to just have a couple days to get things done that needed to get done. Like I organized Betty’s toys. Totally not exciting or glamorous, but it needed to get done!

      COME TO BALTIMORE!!!!!

  3. samantha couch says:

    you are amazing! i was supposed to run 12 for my half training this weekend and hit a wall at ten, my hips were killing me so i just decided to call it a day. i ran 10.17 in the SAME amount of time you ran 12. sheesh, lady. you’re on fire! so happy you felt good and you pushed through the wall.

  4. missadventuresinrunning says:

    I think you did awesome at your race considering everything that has been going on! You are amazing! I am glad you were able to do the race and finish the series. It is extra cool that you got to meet up with other bloggers!

  5. Sweaty Mess says:

    Great recap and great finish! I’m so happy that you were able to power through it and the foot didn’t make it too hard on you. That is some great swag and I am definitely doing this race and probably the series next year.

    Trish – you should totally blog! Lauren pressured me into it too. 🙂

    Glad you’re back! Hope you enjoyed your mini-staycation!

    • runsaltrun says:

      Thank you thank you!! I SO enjoyed it. It was very necessary. 🙂
      Definitely do the series. It was totally worth the money and maybe (hopefully) they will have a Living Social deal again. I am so proud of YOU with your 9 miles over the weekend! Well done!

  6. Piper's Run says:

    Great job Salt! How cool is that to meet up with a bunch of bloggers! I ran 10k on the treadmill this weekend (long run) and managed to get through it – sure hoping I don’t have to do all my longs runs on the treadmill – yikes!

  7. Sun says:

    Congrats on your race! Sounds like you played it super smart and just as you planned. Glad to hear you were able to have fun during the miles and had some company along the way. Seeing a running pal on a course is the best 🙂

  8. Hailey says:

    Yay! Fantastic job. I’m so glad you were able to finish this race. I’m sure not that long ago you weren’t thinking that wasn’t even a possibility with your foot, so I sure hope you’re extremely proud of yourself! I can’t believe how much stuff you got! A back pack, long sleeve, and all that bling!? I think I’m picking the wrong races 😉 haha. I did have a race and it was the last of my summer series. My time was exactly the same as my first race in the series and the elevation wasn’t too fun at the time, but overall still a fun day! 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      Thank you! OMG you have no idea. I was starting to think the half in October was going to be impossible and now look at that…I just trained for a half. 🙂 Plus I have a couple months to get faster now!

      The premiums for all of these races were awesome. I ended up buying a Living Social for the series and it was even more worth it. Even if they don’t do that again next year, I will totally pay full price. 🙂

      I’m glad you had a great race this weekend! I demand a recap! 😉

  9. Eat Pray Run, DC says:

    awesome! i’m so happy you finished strong and with a great time to boot! looks like a bunch of great gals ran this one. speaking of…when is the next time we are running (and drinking) together? i’m ready for a reunion! 🙂

  10. Elizabeth says:

    Sounds like a blast! One of my good friends ran this race this weekend and liked it as well. This is definitely on my list for next year.

    Congrats on finishing the race! And for completing the B3 that is awesome!

    • runsaltrun says:

      That’s so awesome! I don’t think I’ve spoken to one person that had a bad time. Everyone was in such a great mood! Thank you so much. It was cool to add a couple more medals to the collection!

    • runsaltrun says:

      I never realized that until now. I run downhill a lot in my neighborhood, but nothing that goes on for miles and miles like this one. My lower back is definitely feeling it today. Epsom salt baths for me!

      Thank you. It is good to be back! I needed a break. 🙂

  11. chasingchels says:

    Way to go hun!!! That is a killer finish, especially when you think about all the stuff you’ve been through in the past two months! Love all the swag you got, too. I was sad the race I did this weekend didn’t have any…couldn’t wear a race tshirt post race since we didn’t get any 😦 we did get cool oak medals, though, so that was something!

    • runsaltrun says:

      Thank you, friend!! I actually ended up getting a logo racerback for the race and putting it in my bag so I could change into it after (my shirt I wore for the race was too gross). It’s always lame when you don’t get a shirt. I’ve been there.

      I was definitely pleased with the outcome. 🙂

  12. Chaitali says:

    Yay, great job pushing through and finishing the race! Charles Street sounds like it would be fun to run down but I am surprised that there weren’t a lot of spectators. I’ve heard people complain about the delay during the Marine Corps Marathon too and it happens every year plus they always publish the list of closures in advance! Oh well.

    • runsaltrun says:

      People just like to complain I guess. 🙂 But yeah I was def surprised that there weren’t more people out! Although I guess it was before 8am on a Saturday. If I didn’t have to be up, I probably wouldn’t be either. Thanks, lady!

  13. DarlinRae says:

    Yeehaw! Congrats on finishing 12 in spite of not feeling 100%! That’s some seriously cool bling. I wish my area had more challenges like this–looks like such a blast.

    • runsaltrun says:

      The medals were totally kick ass. The yellow part of the Charles Street 12 one is actually glittery. I’m in love with it. (Also I didn’t realize I would be getting a finishers medal for that race until the day before so BONUS!) Thanks, friend! It was a really fun time.

  14. Michele says:

    Great job! Sounds like an awesome race even with the struggle at the end. Glad you weren’t in pain at all, that’s huge!

  15. fitfoodiemama says:

    Wow! That race looks awesome, wish I was closer so I could run it!! Congrats on your finish and your bling- it was well earned!!!

    Ps. I thought I missed a bunch of your posts because the email that I subscribed with to received notifications stopped working but I am glad to read that you were conveniently on a stay-cay while my email betrayed me! Happy you’re back to posting 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      I wish you were TOO! Thank you so much, friend!
      And yep…I just needed a little time to unplug. It’s good to be back, but man I feel like I missed so much! I never realized how many blogs I read and love until I spend a couple days offline!

  16. Amy says:

    So glad your foot hung in there for the whole 12! Also, awesome jacket and bag. I’ve never run a race series before, but all this extra swag I see has planted the seed. 🙂

  17. Mar on the Run! says:

    woohoo – rock on woman!! I may have to do this series next year. LOVE all the swag!!! I ran this weekend and my recap is coming tomorrow 😉 but also I’ve had a ton of beach time, yeah… 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      YES you do. And you may feel free to crash at my house the night before the races so you won’t have to drive. 🙂 I was just about to start reading your recap in about 30 seconds! Next time I visit out west I need to find a cool race to run.

  18. northernambitions says:

    We’ve miss you too!! Although a break is good every once in a while. I’m so proud of you and I love your determination. You rocked that even with the foot, even with the smart choice to take a walk break, you still ended strong and are one amazing lady. I’m so glad you got to party with a group of awesome people afterwards. I hope the live entertainment also involved a glass of cold water and a glass of wine 🙂

    • runsaltrun says:

      Ugh the water was WARM (but I drank it anyway because I was so thirsty). But the wine? ICE COLD. Delicious. 🙂 Thank you so much, friend! It was definitely a necessary break.

  19. kristenk says:

    This race sounds like so much fun! I would totally have run that if I still lived in Philly. I hardly ever got to go to Baltimore but it’s worth it for a fun race and swag like that! And I’m really glad your foot didn’t hurt either!

  20. piratebobcat says:

    Awesome! Way to get through it and pain free (well, except for the mental pain)! I’ve never run a 12 mile race…I’d love to do that. I bet it rocked not having a .1 at the end! Congrats on the bling. I loooove race bling!

  21. sarahdudek80 says:

    You are awesome. I am so glad you got yourself a break! Everyone needs it especially this time of year. We are with our family this week for a vacation and I am happily neglecting blogging. Great work on that run!

  22. Run Colby Run says:

    I missed you!!! Truthfully? I’m glad you were on a time-out. I was too. 🙂 Congrats on the race!!!! So happy you’re back in action. Nice way to flex your mental toughness. And….SWEET BLING!!! 🙂

  23. ambertherunner says:

    That elevation chart! It’s so deceiving. Which makes me all the more glad I DIDN’T look at it before the race 🙂
    It was so much fun hanging out & meeting your friends- B3 is a must next year!

  24. Nicole@TheGirlWhoRanEverywhere says:

    Great job girl! I’m so proud of you!! Way to dog deep and bring out your true runner self! Lol I love how you say the flat parts felt challenging bc of all the hills you has been on-I have never experienced that and hope to god
    I never do LOL!! That is some awesome swag that you got!!! I love
    Races with good swag. I mean…if I’m spending all this money…I want something gooood!!!! Xoxo so proud of youuuu!!!!

  25. afastpacedlife says:

    Yes, we did miss you! But we all know that live takes precedence over blogging, so good for you for taking yourself offline.

    That race you did looks like fun. Baltimore isn’t too far away from NYC. Maybe I should go down and race one day.

  26. The Pinterested Parent says:

    Good Morning Salt, I know I have nominated you for these before, but I just love you & you have inspired me of course to have run my first race this year. I have nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blog Award. Details are on my page.

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