Sunday, April 13, 2014

On the Run: Martian Invasion of Races 10K 2014

The martians invaded Dearborn again!  Every year around this time they come flying into the city and descend upon Ford Field park and the surrounding area.  Never fear - these martians are friendly and come to encourage people of all ages and ability levels to run. The Martian Invasion of Races lineup includes a 5K, 10K, 1/2 marathon, and marathon.  It also has a Kids' Marathon (kids log 25 miles prior to race day and run the last 1.2 at the event).

I've run the 1/2 marathon the last 6 years - it was my first 1/2 ever so I always go back for it - but with Boston just over a week away, I opted for the 10K instead. I was excited to run a 10K again and was shooting for a new PR.  My goal was sub-41:00 and with the interval and speed work training I've been doing, I was pretty confident I would hit my goal.  The course is one I'm familiar with, so that gave me an advantage.  It starts at Ford Field and winds its way through Dearborn to Ford Road where it picks up Hines Drive.  Up to this point there were a few slight hills.  I could see my Boston training paying off because I was able to pass some people and gain ground with each hill and elevation change.  

To get onto Hines we ran down a ramp from Ford Road and then things leveled out on Hines for a nice flat out and back.  Then we hit the paved Rouge River Gateway Greenway Trail, one of my regular training routes.  It has a few decent hills that I've been running hill repeats on the past couple of weeks.  I felt right at home on the trail and was happy to pass the 4-mile marker just after the first hill.  I was right on the heels of a guy who was using me to pace him but was determined not to let me pass him.  As we ran through UM-Dearborn I started closing in on a woman who had been far ahead of me for the whole race.  On a downhill I flew past her.  To exit the trail there is another hill.  Not only did I pass the guy I'd been pacing but also passed 2 others as I powered up that old familiar hill and kept right on going without slowing down.

Now I knew all the hard parts were over.  Everything left was easy and flat.  I checked my watch and saw that it read just over 37:00.  I knew there was no way I could finish in 40:00 but I tried to push as hard as I could.  On the last straightaway before I turned for the finish line I saw Brian taking pictures and my friend Megan cheering me on.  Then I turned for the finish and I gave it my all.  I ran it in hard, feeling strong and proud, finishing under 41:00.  

I set a new PR by 2:59, finished 4th in my age group (beat out of 3rd by 1 second!), 10th woman, and 34th overall.  And I got this sweet little glass martian from the Glass Academy in Dearborn!




Don't Save Me / Haim
Rattlesnake / St. Vincent
The Walker / Fitz & the Tantrums
Anklebiters / Paramore
After the Disco / Broken Bells
I'm Shakin' / Jack White
I Love It / Icona Pop
The Innocent / Mayer Hawthorne
Dance Apocalyptic / Janelle Monae
Mallie Chan / Otto Vector
50 Ways to Say Goodbye / Train
E.T. / Katy Perry

I also ran the Kids' Marathon with my 5th grade Girls' Running Club from school.  For most of the girls it was their first race.  They did such a fabulous job and I'm so proud of them! I love being able to help train and inspire young runners who wouldn't otherwise have the opportunity get out and run on their own.  

And here's Megan who ran the 5K and placed 2nd in her age group.  She's amazing! We met at RUNdetroit so we're both representing with our shirts.  We found this nice family of martians who let us pose with them.  Nanu nanu!

Did you run one of the Martian races?  Tell me about it!


  1. I ran the 10k! It was my first 10k so my time was far more than yours (58:17) but I stkll really enjoyed it! I did the breast cancer 3 day walk a couple of years and much of the course was familiar because of that :)

    1. Congrats on your first 10k, Sam! I'm glad you enjoyed it! I'm in awe of anyone who does the breast cancer 3-day. That's an amazing cause and a very long walk! :)

  2. I ran the Half Marathon. I do every year now, because, like you, it was my first Half. I'll be throwing up a recap sometime later today, but it went great. I do think that I wasn't really ready for the heat, given I've been running in such lower temperatures. Also, as always, I wish they had more H2O out there.

    1. You're right, there aren't many aid stations out there, especially once you get onto Hines. It seems like it just goes on forever! After the brutal winter the warmer temps were nice but yes, hard to adjust to. I'll head over to check out your recap!