To PR or not to PR?

Morning, friends!

I got my Thursday started with the usual — a 4.4-ish mile run with my girl Elle!


We met up at 6:30 a.m. and ran our normal hilly loop — it felt great to get out there! I was out late last night (I went to dinner and to see “Bring It On: The Musical” with some friends — SO entertaining!) and almost considering cancelling on the run this morning, but I knew I would be bummed if I did because I won’t have a chance to work out later today. So glad I didn’t bail, as I knew I would be!



  • Mile 1: 9:57 (ridonk endless hill)
  • Mile 2: 9:12
  • Mile 3: 8:25 (hooray downhill!)
  • Mile 4: 8:47

We ran the first super long endless hill a bit slower than usual, but it’s all good. Great run! We chatted away the whole time, as per usual.

Speaking of running — I’m running the Tarheel 10 Miler on Saturday morning!



The Tarheel 10 Miler is a race that everyone said I should do before leaving Chapel Hill — it starts and ends on campus in Keenan Stadium and winds all through campus and the surrounding areas. It’s supposed to be a fun but VERY hilly race. Like, the race course looks like a blanket being shaken out. Given that, I’m debating if I should try to PR or just have fun, enjoy the course and Chapel Hill, and not worry about time. As you know, I just set a new PR at the Tobacco Road Half Marathon a few weeks ago (average pace: 8:20 min/miles), but that race was mostly flat. However — my current 10 miler PR is really old — it’s 1:28:27 (average pace: 8:51 min/miles) from the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler back in April 2010. I haven’t done a 10 miler since, and clearly I’ve gotten faster, which is pretty awesome to see — I feel like speed happens so subtly you don’t really realize it until you look back at your old race times and are like… whoa! How did that happen?! :)

Anyway — what do you guys think? To PR or not to PR? I feel like I should just go for it, even with all the hills… I’m in good running shape right now and even though the Tobacco Road Half Marathon was flat, I still averaged 30 seconds faster per mile in that race AND ran 3 miles farther. So… yeah. Thoughts?


Time to race off to school — I have a presentation to give this morning! But before I go — please go check out my guest post on DailySpark from earlier this week: Fast, Fit, and Fabulous Breakfast Ideas. It may make you hungry. :)

Happy Thursday, friends!


  1. 1

    My vote is PR! You have built up both speed and endurance, so I think you will surprise yourself!

  2. 2

    I see no reason to NOT go for the PR – it’s not like you have a big race in the next few weeks that you need to be cautious about, and you don’t have a lingering injury causing you problems. Go leave it all on the course.

  3. 3

    I say go for it! I think (hopefully this doesn’t jinx you) you’re totally capable even with the hills of improving that time if you’re having a good day. Better to have tried and failed than not tried at all :)

  4. 4

    You can absolutely do it! I would aim for your half marathon pace, but reevaluate at the 5 mile mark and if it feels hard you could cut back, if you’re feeling really strong you may even be able to maintain a better pace to the finish. Good luck! And have fun!

  5. 5

    Go for it! You’re in great shape right now, and you’re used to running in Chapel Hill, so the hilly course shouldn’t be a problem! :)

  6. 6

    definitely go for the PR! show those hills what you’ve got!
    you paid your money, you’re getting swag…make the most of the race opportunity!

  7. 7

    I say go for the PR!! I did this race last year and loved every minute of it. With your training on that hill every Thursday, you’ll be fine for the Laurel Hill challenge. I wish I could do it this year…can’t wait to hear how it goes! Good luck!

  8. 8

    I’m no running expert but I say go for it! Also, this is random but do you have any idea how tight compression sleeves are supposed to be? I have a feeling mine aren’t tight enough and I should have gone for the smaller size.

  9. 10

    I’m happy you didn’t bail too. :) Our runs are one of my favorite parts of the week!

  10. 12

    I definitely think you should go for the PR! Good luck

  11. 13

    I say…you have a 10 mile PR in your future. Go for it. You are feeling strong in your training and I’m sure it will pay off Saturday. I still need to get some CEPs. Eyeing a good deal!! Oh and I made your almond banana breakfast bars yesterday. YUMMY :)

  12. 15

    Go for it! But if you go into thinking you don’t want to PR, you probably will. :)

  13. 16

    Definitely try and PR! No reason not to with your training, and if during the race you just can’t keep the pace up, the don’t worry about it and enjoy the run!

  14. 17

    Start off the first 5 miles at a comfortable pace. One that is quick, but wont cause you to burn out at the halfway point. If you find at mile 5 or 6 that you have some juice, kick it up a nothc and run strong to the finish. It worked on a hilly half marathon I did a couple weeks ago. Ran a comfortable 830-9 minute pace and then put on the burner and ran 8s all the way in. PR’d by four minutes. Have a great race weekend and love it, PR or not.

  15. 19

    I say go for it:) You are in great shape and can probably do it no matter what. When I am trying to PR, I go in with the mindset, though, that I won’t beat myself up if something doesn’t go my way that day and it doesn’t happen! It’s still 10 miles:)

  16. 21

    For these kind of races, I always go in with an open mind and start out with the intent to race and PR. I do pay attention to my body and how I’m feeling and adjust my expectations if needed. The less-pressure approach has worked really well for me in the last few years!

  17. 22

    I say go in with the intention of a PR but willing to adjust your intentions if the hills get to be too much.

    Good luck!

  18. 23

    Go for it and many many good lucks your way. Also, crazy story, I am not really sure how I stumbled upon your blog a while ago, but it is funny that you went to see Bring It On. I actually was in the show when it world premiered in Atlanta in 2010. Small world as in most fitness/health/food blogs I read, no one ever mentions going to the theatre! Break a leg in your race!

    • 24

      No way – that is SO cool! I loved the show – I was really impressed by the combo of gymnastics, hip hop dancing, and singing. Such a fun show!

  19. 25

    And by 2010, I mean 2011…you would think by April I would realize that it is 2012, but alas, my brain is still in last year. Oops!

  20. 26

    I am running the Tarheel 10 miler too! I was kind of wondering the same thing about the race-whether to push myself or just take my time and enjoy it. I haven’t done a long race since my first(& only) 1/2 marathon about a year and a half ago, so I am a little nervous about the race (especially the hills!). I’ve done a couple 10 mile runs over the past few weeks and have been around 1 hr 27 min, but I have a feeling the hills might kill me!

  21. 28
    Lauren K says:

    Just read a great article in runners world about being more of a “zen runner” aka not watching you watch, using headphones, monitoring pace etc etc. Most ironic was when people don’t look at their watch while running and end up going…faster?! I say run by how you feel, and see what happens. I think a new PR is right around the corner :)

  22. 29

    I’m going to be the first person to go against the grain and say don’t PR! I feel like everything is a test (physical and intellectual) and it’s always around the corner! How about for once we just have fun, be present and enjoy the ride/run! Maybe this is about me more than you, but I want a break. I want to just be. So my vote is for you to “just have fun, enjoy the course and Chapel Hill, and not worry about time!” IMO, you have plenty of time to work on your PR and not that much time in Chapel Hill. Enjoy it!

    Thanks for letting me share my two cents!

    Eat Live Move: Intuitive Eating from A to Z!

  23. 30

    Go for it! You will definitely PR. From the course map, I think there’s only one big hill, between 8.5 and 9.5 miles, and it comes after a big downhill stretch. Good luck.

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