Shamrock Shuffle: a disappointing PR

The last few years the Shamrock Shuffle 8K has been my first race of the year. It marks the unofficial start of the running season in Chicago, so it seems fitting.

I like running it because each year I PR which makes me feel good about the training I’ve done in the off season. I finished the 2011 Shamrock Shuffle in 46:56. It was my biggest PR, 4 minutes faster than 2010! FOUR MINUTES!!

This Shuffle I of course set a big goal for myself. I wanted to hit 40 minutes.

I felt off from the second I started yesterday. My legs didn’t seem to want to move, my knees felt soft and I just couldn’t seem to shift myself into high gear.

The weather was perfect, I was hydrated, ate well and did my warm-up as prescribed by Coach Jen. So There should have been no excuses as to why I wasn’t going faster.

I hit the first mile in 8:49, it wasn’t on target but in the back of my mind I thought MAYBE I could speed up and get close to 40mins.

At the 5K marker I was at 28:12… there goes my goal. It was then I remembered Jen’s note in Training Peaks… “Suffer like a pig!”

I wasn’t sure I could PR at all at this point. Still feeling subpar, I tried to pick up the pace as best as I could. After turning the corner on to Michigan Ave I was fighting to keep a 9 minute or better pace. Finally turning on to Roosevelt, up that stupid hill and on to Columbus I was as “suffering pig-like” as I could be.


I PR’d by 1:04.

I was really disappointed. The whole race felt like a failure and immediately got me wondering how Florida 70.3 was going to go if I couldn’t destroy an 8K?!?!

I’m still confident I can PR at the 70.3 distance. Florida is flat unlike the Mooseman 70.3 couse I raced last year!

With 55 days until race day, its just time to focus and train HARDER! So if you’ll excuse me, I need to get on my bike!

2 thoughts on “Shamrock Shuffle: a disappointing PR

  1. Well, Phil, you need to keep it in perspective too. I am not training you to “peak” and PR in an 8k! I am trying to get you ready for Florida AND ultimately the bigger races later this year. it is a process and a PR is a PR…..sure, we all want to go faster all the time…so pull your self up and get back to sleeping right, training well, eating even better and keep your eyes on the prize!

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