Race: Lifeline Ohio's Dash for Donation 5K
Distance: 3.1 miles
Date: July 13, 2013, 8:30 am
Finish time: 28:40
What sets this race apart: The Team Challenge and the stories
A friend of mine, Fred, that runs with my large running group received two life saving organs from a complete stranger in 2001. Each year, he runs this 5K as a tribute to the donor and the donor family. In recent years, he has participated as part of the Team Challenge for the event. This year, our team, Team Superman, had 81 official members! We ordered Superman tech t-shirts and went out to run the race in support of Fred and Rob (his donor).
|Me and Fred pre-race|
After soliciting opinions from all of you, and with the hiking and mountain training taking it's toll, I'd decided that I was going to run this 5K for fun. A no-stress kind of race. My friend Sarah met me at my house to drive down together. All week it had been rainy and humid, making the "fun" choice easier. That morning, it was cool and dry as we drove to the race. During warm-up, I briefly considered racing it, but mentally I had already committed to running for fun and I was enjoying the complete lack of stress.
We did manage to convince my friend Sarah that she should try for her sub-30 if she felt good. My running wife and I agreed to pace her and distract her. I could completely relate to her pre-race nerves, and tried to help keep her distracted and grounded as we watched the kid race, complete with mascots, and the 1K fun run/walk.
|Sarah, me, Laurie and Lynne enjoying the pre-race atmosphere|
The second mile had both up and downhills as the course went around the Scioto mile area. I told Sarah the "chugga-chugga" trick for getting up the hills, and I think everyone around us wanted to know who brought the crazy chick out to the race. I think somewhere in this mile is where I took Sarah's handheld from her and carried it for her. See - proof I can be nice too!
The third mile was more of the same as we wound through downtown. I talked Sarah into pushing up the hills and allowing herself to recover without overdoing the speed on the downhills. She kept TALKING about calling me all kinds of names, but I think she talked about it more than she actually did it. That's love right there.
As we got close enough to see the finish line, I picked an arbitrary point and told Sarah that we were sprinting when we got there. Even though a sprint wasn't necessary to get her the sub-30 at this point (that's how amazing she was doing), I told her "let's set a PR that will be hard to break." Maybe I should go into motivational speaking? LOL.
Throughout the race - I tried to walk the line of making Sarah smile, but not laugh (so as to not make things harder). I may have even called her ass cute at one point. What did this mean for my race? I had the MOST fun that I have EVER had at a 5K. After Sarah rocked out the finish with a blistering sprint and KILLED her previous PR by almost 5 minutes, I was on an emotional cloud nine. It was as though I had run some kind of crazy PR or something. I smiled, laughed and was giddy about it the rest of the day. I don't think I can truly share how incredibly happy I was for her. I knew she could run a sub-30 5K, but to be at her side as she crossed the finished line in 28:40??? Perfect, just perfect.
Even though I only ran 6.67 miles for the day, it's been one of my favorite running Saturdays all summer. I mean, she KILLED it.