Something I thought I'd ever do is run in a road race, but after my weight ballooning to 247 pounds in January 2015, I decided to go on a fitness kick. I eliminated a lot of sugar out of my diet and started exercising somewhat regularly and have worked my way to running 5 miles / 8 kilometers. Actually today was only the 2nd time I'd run that distance on the road. Plenty of times had I done it on a treadmill, but only in the last month did I learn the difficulties of running on the road.
Today was the perfect day for the race. Temperatures was cool and I had hoped to get the race done in under 50 minutes. I had also said that I didn't want to be overtaken by anyone pushing a stroller after the first mile (those fit moms can take off early, but after that.....). Starting near the Rec Center on Hawthorne Avenue I made the rookie mistake of trying to keep pace with everyone, and when I hit the first mile in 9:01, I thought I might have a heart attack. My 2nd mile was 9:04, but I'm sure I was boosted by seeing Amy and the boys cheer me on halfway day Greenway Ave. I thought the 3rd mile I struggled, even though it was the long flat run along Vail Ave, but still pulled at 9:18 mile. Mile 4 was the killer. A few hills (minor but this is me) but I wish they had of been earlier. And then it happened. I was passed by my first stroller. I can't begin to tell you how deflated I felt. And then moments later a dad passed me with a double stroller. Bummer Days! Near the end of Kenmore Ave (after a long, slow climb) I finally hit the wall and had to walk a little. Fortunately moments later I turned onto 5th Ave and spotted my family again. This was the inspiration to get me running the rest of the race. As the race came close to an end near Upper Independence Park, I continued at the same pace - you know how you see people pick up the pace as they near the finish line - I call Bullshit!. I had nothing more I could give and was just happy to cross the line (not before another stroller overtook me within the last 100 yards of the race).
My official time was 47:16, so a lot better than I expected and I came 418 out of 804 people. And only 21:10 behind the winner (Ha!). I felt good about the race, but realize things could've been better had I not taken a walk break. Anyhow, I now have some thing to aim for in next years race. I want to get in under 45 minutes and finish in the top half of all contestants. Lets just hope I can keep up the running and get fitter and leaner.