It’s almost time for my Labor Day Weekend tradition races: the Mike Sterling 10K and Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach!

Here I am at last year’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon expo.

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find and write race reviews!

Ever since 2012, I’ve run the Mike Sterling 10K every Labor Day Weekend, and in 2017, I added the Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon.

I’m looking forward to my third weekend of my own little challenge, with the 10K on Saturday, Aug. 31, and the half marathon on Sunday, Sept. 1.

I’ve hardly raced at all this summer, which is pretty common for me. I don’t do well in the heat and humidity, and there aren’t that many races offered, anyway.

I ran the Baltimore 10 Miler on June 1 and the Naylor Mill 7K on Aug. 2. While I did try at the Naylor Mill 7K, the terrain is so tough that I couldn’t get anywhere near my usual race pace. So I haven’t tried to race for speed in a while.

Mike Sterling 10K

At the Mike Sterling 10K in Crisfield, Maryland, I’m hoping for an average pace between 9:00-9:15/mile. Of course, I’d love to be faster, but I’m setting what I think is a reasonable goal. Last year, my time was 58:36, a 9:27/mile pace. Of course, the weather will play a big role, and I will listen to my body rather than do whatever it takes to get a somewhat arbitrary number.

Here I am finishing last year’s Mike Sterling 10K.

The race is celebrating its 40th anniversary and has a 1979 theme this year. I am excited to wear my 1979 running outfit! Stay tuned to see it!

If you’re interested in signing up, use my referral link. I have the opportunity to get some money back, and you’ll get a referral link when you sign up, too!

Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach

At Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach, I’m thinking I will see if I can hover around a 10-minute mile. I wasn’t able to do that at the St. Michaels Running Festival Half Marathon once I got to the second half, but that was when it was just starting to get hot out for the season. Although it’s been tough, I have been running regularly in this heat and humidity as I train for the Marine Corps Marathon.

Plus, the race starts at 6:30 a.m. I am definitely not a morning person, but I’m excited about this start time because every bit will help when it comes to avoiding more of the heat. Again, I’ll listen to my body and will put safety first.

My time last year at Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach was 2:18:15. According to an online pace calculator, this was about 10:32/mile, although my mile time was probably a little faster on my watch since I had just over 13.1 miles logged.

Here I am during the last mile of the 2018 Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon.

For both races, I’d like to try to stay relatively consistent mile-to-mile. I feel like this is something I’ve improved upon since I started pacing races, but sometimes I end up dropping off toward the end when I’m running my own races (not pacing). Usually I can pull off a somewhat-fast last mile because I know the race is almost over.

If you’re interested in running Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach, you’ll need to sign up sooner rather than later. Online registration closes this Sunday at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time, which is 2:59 a.m. Eastern Time Monday.

You can save $16 on the half marathon with code 19RNRBRP16, or $6 on shorter distances with code 19RNRBRP6. Rock ‘n’ Roll race weekend also includes a 5K and one-mile race on Saturday, Aug. 31.

Check out the shirts and medals for each of the distances here. There’s also the opportunity to earn additional medals — if you run races both days at Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach, you get a Remix medal, and if you run all three races, you’ll get a tumbler. And if you’d like to run Rock ‘n’ Roll Savannah in Georgia later this year, there’s an additional medal — in addition to the ones you’ll earn there.

Rock ‘n’ Roll Virginia Beach Half Marathon runners also get access to the full American Music Festival, with headliners Lee Brice, 311, +Live+ and Dashboard Confessional. The Sunday night concert, which 5K runners have access to, includes +Live+ and Dashboard Confessional.

There will also be plenty of bands on the course — 13 stages! — along with The Deloreans by the finish line, according to the Rock ‘n’ Roll website.

In addition to the live music, I’ve also appreciated the cheer groups and supportive residents along the course — they will help get some pep in your step!

The expo and race schedules can be found here.

Want to register? Click here — before Sunday, Aug. 25, at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time — and remember to use the discount code!

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