So why do I show up? Think of the children . . . and how much fun it is to rub it in the face of a bunch of punk teenagers trying to run fast to impress the girls. But I digress . . .
My parents were nice enough to pick up our packets on Friday. They were both going to do the walk, but my mom had to pass on account of her heel.
The weather was dryer this year, but also colder. It was about 32 degrees at the start. It was just me and my 14 year old son running the race. My wife and younger son opted out. They didn't have as many people running this year. There were just 140 registered this year, and there were over 300 last year. I think the age group breakdown that they do kept a bunch of regular runners away. Some of the people that came just to do another road race didn't show up when they heard that all the adults were lumped into one 16 and over age group.
|All the stuff in the bag|
So everyone huddles in the gym until right before the race starts. I mean they don't leave the building until about 3 minutes before the start. I did get in a little warmup and some striders in. I had been pretty sore all week from playing basketball on Tuesday night. We played adults versus the kids with my son's 6th to 8th grade team. 10 minutes of basketball and I was hurting the rest of the week. It's tough getting old. But today was yet another opportunity to school some more punk teenagers.
I positioned myself near the front with my son and a couple of his friends. As the timing guy yelled "Start" I just kinda strode out pretty easily and slowly built up to pace in the first couple hundred yards. Not much competition as just after the 1/4 mile, I took the lead from 3 kids. As I passed I heard, "OK, we're dead."
|Initial Out and Back|
So then I just tried to keep my stride and my pace. I've rode this road hundreds of times on my bike, but haven't really run it. This first mile is basically a slow gradual uphill the whole time. About a half mile in, I felt pretty tired, but thought "this is what it's gonna be like" so I just went with it. I started feeling less sore as I went. I guess I was working the kinks out, so my stride started to feel smoother.
I was glad to come though that first mile with a 6 flat split as it was mostly uphill. The second mile had several ups and downs in it. I didn't do so well on the 'ups'. When I hit the end of the lollipop of the course I tried to lengthen my stride and push. Seeing all the people on their way out certainly was a pick me up.
So I tried to length my stride that last mile. Again, when I passed people, I kinda got a boost of energy. That was especially true when I passed my Dad who was doing the walk. I came down near the turn for the finish and went up that last little hill. I was glad to put a good last mile in at 5:52 to make up for that 6:09. I just tried to push that last little bit for the finish. I crossed the finish line first to very little fanfare. The RD congratulated me on a good race. I told him it was a course record (that's a joke).
|The Boys after the Race|
I got some bagels and bananas and something to drink. I waited for everyone else I knew to finish. One of my son's friends that I've known since he was born came in second just ahead of his principal. I went outside just in time to see my Dad finish the walk. He said he enjoyed it quite a bit!
|My Dad Finishing|
|Ann, Thomas, Ransom, Jake, Kary, and Me|
|Winners, Winners, Chicken Dinners|
Our friend Kary won the women's 16 and up. And Thomas, who was second overall, obviously won the 13-15 age group.
|Always Representin' Big Sexy Racing|