Run, White and Blue 5K: Not my fastest time, but a fun time

Vanessa Junkin holding cup of cookies 'n' cream ice cream after running.
I enjoyed this delicious ice cream after the Run, White and Blue 5K. (Vanessa Junkin photo)

For my third race of four in an eight-day span, I headed up to the Delaware Technical Community College Owens Campus in Georgetown for the Run, White and Blue 5K. This was my sixth year in a row participating in the event, including last year’s virtual run.

For the first four times I did this race, I received a free entry in exchange for blogging about it, but this year, I didn’t ask about it and just paid the affordable $25 entry fee. The race benefits scholarships for veterans and first responders at the college, so I am happy to support that cause.

One of the things that always stands out to me about this race is the wide array of food offered afterward, and again, that didn’t disappoint.

The race was held the evening of Thursday, Sept. 9. It was much easier to park than the last year I did the in-person race (the race was smaller than usual, and there was an election going on at the school the same evening in 2019), and I got my bib and shirt. I saw my Eastern Shore Running Club friends and we got a photo with the American flag before the race start.

The course is two loops around the campus, with the first loop a little longer than the second loop. It’s flat and not a difficult course. It wasn’t as hot as it has been lately, but it was humid. Looking back, my Garmin has the temperature at 70 degrees with 100% humidity and light rain. I know it was raining before the race, but I don’t think it rained while I was actually running. The humidity might have impacted me, though.

Five runners pose by an American flag in a selfie.
ESRC selfie before the race start!

I wanted to come in under 30 minutes, and ideally beat my fastest 5K of 2020, which was 29:10 for the Virtual Zoo Stampede 5K Self Challenge. That did not happen, but there will always be other opportunities.

I ran the first mile in 9:37, which is about where I would have wanted to be for the rest of the run — a little faster to beat 29:10. I skipped the first water stop, but I got water at the water stop that was about halfway through the course. I ended up struggling with coughing problems (not COVID-related), and at one point, before the third water stop, I almost felt like I was going to throw up, so I slowed to a walk and got more water.

Each mile got slower, as I ran the second mile in 10:30 and the third in 10:57. I was able to speed up a little at the end and run the last 0.11 in a 9:54 average pace. My watch had about 3.08 when I crossed the finish line, so I went till it said 3.11. When I neared the finish line, I heard a shout-out for the Eastern Shore Running Club, as I was wearing an ESRC singlet.

I ended with a time of 32:12 on my watch (with the little bit of extra running) and 31:58 for my official time. While it was far from my fastest 5K, it was my fastest one since April, when I ran this year’s virtual Zoo Stampede 5K in 29:24.

I wore my pair of the Brooks Hyperion Tempo for this run, which I’ve worn for some of my fast miles and two-milers this year. They felt great!

Post-race food: chicken, cole slaw, roll, pizza, bag of cheese curls, banana and can of beer.
This race always offers generous amounts of food.

My first stop after finishing was the Vanderwende Farm Creamery ice cream truck, where I got a delicious free serving of cookies ‘n’ cream ice cream. After finishing that, I continued inside to enjoy dinner with my friends — chicken, cole slaw, a roll, pizza, a can of Dogfish Head beer, and a banana and cheese curls that I brought home. I appreciated that they had volunteers serving the food and food boxed up, and people wore masks inside aside from when eating. There was also live music.

I always have fun at this race, and this year was no exception. It was a great way to spend a Thursday evening!


Mile 1: 9:37
Mile 2: 10:30
Mile 3: 10:57
Last bit (.11): 1:06 (9:54 pace)
Total on watch: 32:12/10:21 pace; total on race results: 31:58/10:19 pace

Blue T-shirt with green text along with black Hyperion Tempo running shoes on brick background.
Here’s this year’s race shirt and the shoes I wore for the 5K.

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