Races – Going Twice the Distance, I Ran the Salem 10K

This is a blog about running 5Ks, and as I wrote early on, that is my preferred distance. But this past weekend, I went twice the distance when I ran the Salem 10K.


But why?

Well, because it was part of the Cambridge 5K race series. Since it was included in my package of races, I decided to go long for a day.

I did prep by doing some longer runs to make sure that I could cover the distance. I wasn’t particularly worried, but it is good to test yourself a little bit and make sure you will be able to cover the new amount of ground before jumping into a new distance.

This, however, does not mean that I have a new passion for longer distances – and you will not see me running a marathon. It was a chance to try something longer, but I won’t be seeking out 10Ks to run. This was good enough for me.

Going into the race, I had two goals:

  1. Finish – check.
  2. Finish in under an hour.

In preparing, I read the 10K chapter in The New York Road Runners club Complete Book of Running and Fitness. In it, elite runner Grete Waitz noted that:

“Ten kilometers is about six miles, and more people can walk that distance comfortably at four miles per hour. Therefore, even walking all the way, you could do it one and one-half hours. Think of this way – any improvement on an hour and a half is progress!”

My net time and gun time are shown below.

Salem 10K results

I just barely made it, but number 2, check!

A 10K is twice as long as a 5K, and so you see some interesting things, especially when the route is through Salem, Massachusetts.

For example, you get spectators like this.


And you have places like Derby Joe’s handing offering cinnamon rolls to runners. I was on the wrong side of the crowd to grab one, so I went back later.

There was also an ugly road kill along the route. To the woman running alongside me – I hope you didn’t step in anything yucky. I would have tried to move over had I noticed before we go to it.

The race was sponsored by Notch Brewery. They make a fine Session Pils that does a great job as a recovery beer.


Finally, I need to give my thanks to the City and people of Salem. They are nice to put up with and support the race. On the way to the start line, a guy in a truck stopped and told me about how he felt like there was a race every weekend and that he’d have to say something to the mayor. He was nice about it, but you could tell he was a little over random streets being shut down. I hope that the disruption was not huge and that people got a little business and fun out of watching the runners.


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