Since every successful running team needs someone to run the anchor leg, I am officially declaring myself the PikesPeakSports.us Triple Crown Runners anchor man because I run as if I’m dragging an anchor. I don’t know what teammate JT did while he was waiting around for me and others to finish (read a book, had breakfast, drove to Denver and back) but I sure appreciated his support and encouragement as I approached the finish line. It’s great being on a team, especially with such classy people.
Actually I was very pleased with my run, completing the 10-miles in 1:48:20 or about 10:50 per mile. I probably could have pushed harder but it was a good, consistent pace, very comfortable, never labored or felt tired. In fact I was having such a good time, enjoying the beautiful morning that I had a big silly grin on my face for the first couple of miles. Until that 8-year old went zipping by me as if I was in a rocking chair. Naw, he just made my grin broader. Thanks to Tim Bergsten's "Podium Coffee" (guaranteed to make you a winner) for the jump start at 5:45 a.m. It had a long lasting effect, as I was still chewing on the grounds at mile 5 (no, seriously Tim, it was mighty good). Finished 24 out of 39 in my age group (that would be the Paleozoic to Pleistocene group). Checking results I could've moved up about 3 places by being just a couple of minutes faster but as my Daddy always said, “If wishes were horses, beggars could ride” so I’m going to take pride in and enjoy this accomplishment. I had never run this far in an organized event and never thought I would. I was a little over 3 miles into the run when I saw the leaders coming back. According to my "on the run" calculations, they were reeling off miles of about 5 and a half minutes. I just laughed at them. "Boy are they going to be tired," I thought. How silly to run that fast instead of my nice, measured pace. I found it to be a huge benefit to have run the course 3 times in training. There were no surprises, you know where every hill is, what’s around the next bend and you know that once you’ve covered 7 miles there aren’t any real significant hills left, there’s a fair amount of downhill and you basically have just a 5K left.
Speaking of the 5K, props to teammate Sharon’s son Mike who took first in his division in the 5K. Imagine rolling out of bed at that hour and clocking a 22:15 in the 5K. Ahh to be young again. As George Bernard Shaw wrote, “Youth is wasted on the young.”
Many thanks to my "coach" Mark who had me well prepared for this run, who showed up to support me, and take the photo above at the 7 mile mark. Many thanks also to all of the wonderful volunteers who give of their time to support these events and help make them happen. Most of all thanks to the sponsors of the PikesPeakSports.us Triple Crown Runners for letting me be a part of this fun and memorable adventure: Tim Bergsten, Ron Ilgen of the Pikes Peak Marathon and Mike Mazzola of Mountain Equipment Recyclers.
Best t-shirt of the day: Early in the run a guy passed me and the back of his shirt read: "If you see me passed out, please pause my watch." I’m sure many of us can relate. Took a day of rest to revel in my accomplishment (and let one knee loosen up) and now back to training for the Summer Round-Up.