Lake Union 10k Race Report – Ping S

Race: Lake Union 10k

Runner: Ping S

Race Date: 08/11/2019

Location: Seattle, WA

Results: 39:38; 3rd in AG; 50 overall

3 Bests – What aspects of the race did you like the most?

It’s a great local (to me) race with easy parking that attracts a sizeable crowd and some good runners. The course is one I run all or parts of somewhat regularly so I know it reasonably well, and the early morning weather in August is usually good for a 10K.

Not so much – Aspects of the race that didn’t do it for you

Just this particular one – I get that pacers are (usually, unless you’re Eliud K) unpaid and doing the “job” as a general favor to the running community and so I’m always thankful they do that. However the 40:00 pacers on Sunday went out super hot – 6:00 for the first mile (versus 6:25 pace for 6:40), and they continued that hot pace with a 6:15 2nd mile and roughly that for the third (I had decided to let them go somewhere around here). One of the two pacers ended up falling off the pace somewhere after 5K, and the pacer who continued on finished in ~38:58, so over a minute faster than the prescribed pace, which to me, for a 10K, is a pretty big miss. Like I said, I can’t be too critical of a guy doing a solid for other runners but just a word of caution to make sure you also run your own race and don’t just blindly follow a dude holding a sign.

Weird factor – What’s the weirdest thing about this race?

French toast breakfast for after-race food? Not sure if anything is really that weird…

Highlights of your race – What did you do well and enjoy about your race in particular?

Glad I backed off that pace early, and super happy I PR’ed – shout out to Coach Matt for getting me in this shape. Also ran a 5K PR over the first half of the race.

Lessons for others – Share your pro-tips on the race to help the next runner

The race is flat-ish; there is a slow incline just after mile 1 onto the Fremont bridge, then a decline, then a slow incline onto the Univ bridge, then a decline, but around mile 4.5 or so there is a really steep (like climbing stairs steep), but really short set of two hills that really knock you off your rhythm if you aren’t ready for them. Being mentally prepared makes a big difference.

Lessons you learned that will help you next time around

I should probably try to run more even splits – 19:17/20:21, not terrible, but probably not the easiest way to run a 39:38.

Most important course specific knowledge to know about the race

Those short and steep hills at ~4.5, be ready.

Aesthetics – Is it a pretty course?

For a short race like a 10K, it is a nice course, along the lake, and with views of the Seattle skyline.

Difficulty – Is it a tough course?

Not really.

Organized and well run – Did it feel like a well-oiled machine or were they flying by the seat of their pants?

Well run and organized.

Competition – Is there a strong field?

Always depends on who you are – if you’re Lopez Lomong, there’s no depth. For a high 30s runner, plenty of depth. I think the winning time this year was ~32:xx.

Logistics – Does it require a special handshake, registration a year in advance, hotels all booked? Give us the low down on the nuts and bolts of making the race happen.

Mostly locals and nothing special to get in.

Aid Stations – Standard fare or anything special to know about the aid stations in terms of what’s available or when?

~2 aid stations with water and Nuun, I believe.

Weather and typical race conditions

Low 60s is typical, sometimes overcast.

Gear – Did you need anything special or is there anything you’d recommend for the next guy?


Spectators – Is this a friendly course for your friends?

Sort of – it’s a loop course.

How’s the Swag?

Typical / average. The medal this year had a stack of french toast on it, which is a first for a race medal, for me.

The Overall Score – How many stars do you give this race and do you recommend that others run it?

5/5 if you’re local – no reason not to run it if it fits in your schedule.