Memorial Day Veteran’s 10K

It’s been a quiet summer thus far; no injuries, no trips, and best of all…I’m not training for anything.

Since the Eugene Marathon in May, I’ve run one race, a 10K on Memorial Day. I put it on my calendar because it fell 30 days after Eugene and it’s a great race for a great cause, local Veterans.

That race was pretty fun and a good reminder that when you put me in a competitive crowd, I’m going to be competitive! The morning of the race my plan was a nice easy run. Just finish I told myself. As I arrived I ran into my friend Gail. She ran Eugene with me and also had a similar race plan.

The start of the race is pretty spectacular, the National Anthem via a single trumpet player with a fly over of three historic war planes at the end of the Anthem. The war planes made two passes then the count down began.

As the race announcer started the count down I heard Gail say “What are we doing at the front of the race?” 2, 1, Go!! And we’re off, running at a totally unsustainable pace.

Start of the race that we had no intentions of racing...but did!
That’s us in the middle at the start of the race we had no intentions of racing…but did!

The first mile took us across the US-41 bridge. A hill, something I hadn’t practiced in a month…no worries, legs are rested right? On the other side of the bridge we did a short loop around, then it was back across the bridge putting us on the other side just before mile 3.

At mile 3 Gail began to pull away from me and my goal became stay on her heals. The last three miles was an out and back along the Punta Gorda Harborwalk, nice and flat, but can I say I hate racing out and backs! Right around mile 4 I spotted a woman ahead. She had good running form but I could tell she was losing steam. I also thought she might be in our age group. As I passed her, a man behind (we later learned her coach) yelled “go get her!”. She didn’t.

In the last half mile both Gail and I picked up our pace. Gail finished 1st in our age group and I finished 3 seconds later in 2nd place. The woman we passed was in our age group and finished 3rd.

That me on the left, Gail on the right, and the woman we passed in the middle
That’s me on the left, Gail on the right, and the woman we passed in the middle

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