Seebo's Run

A running commentary on my training and whatever else emerges from that.

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Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Resurrection Run - LBRR

Greetings from Clear Lake TX, site of installment #3 of C's "5k a month in 05" initiative. Except for the first one, which we all ran on New Years Day, the others have been on the last weekend of their respective months. This being Easter weekend, the pickings were slim, but this being the buckle of the Bible Belt, there was the Christian themed "Resurrection Run" sponsored by a Lutheran Church, complete with free packages of Peeps with the church's Easter service schedule on the label. There was also prize money offered for the top overall and masters finishers, and was spitting distance from NASA, which we planned to visit after the run.

So C and I got our two grumpy, groggy kids into the car at 6:15 to drive clear to the other side of the metro Houston area and get ready to race by 8:00. This had all the trappings of your typical neighborhood 5k, with about 400 folks participating on a flat course that wound through the subdivisions surrounding the church. I had fun trying to guess who the studs were, and which of them looked over 40. For once before a race I felt relaxed, as I had so many excuses why I would not run well this morning that I actually came to believe them. One of them is a little known product from Shiner, TX which I always enjoy when I'm down here, perhaps a bit too much last night. So, inspired by yesterday's workout, I resolved to take the first mile easy and see if I could simultaneously negative split and reel folks in as the race progressed.

True to my resolution I went out easy and got in with two 40+ looking guys, with 3 other younger looking folks ahead of us. Mile 1 passes in 5:36, just where I want to be. Now I just need to pick things up. And I thought I did this in mile 2, putting about 50 feet between me and the two guys in my pack, but pass the marker with a split of 5:43. The #3 guy is a ways ahead of me, but I'm careful to keep my lead over #5. With this in mind, I run mile 3 in 5:37 and finish fourth in an uninspired 17:35.

In what now becomes a ritual, I cool down by running the course backwards until I run into T at about mile 2. He's walking, and is dripping with sweat. The humidity is intense already at 8:25 a.m. in March down here, and he alternates between running and walking the last mile before sprinting for the last .1 to pass about 5 people to finish in 40:27. C & M come sauntering in about ten minutes later, and race against each other the last 50 yards or so to finish in a dead heat. They then recounted how they amused themselves by checking out flyers from several houses that were for sale along the way and plotting how we could all move into one that was going for $2 million.

By the time the family was in the results were posted and the number 2 guy was over 40, so I missed my payday. All goes to show that how well you do depends on who shows up. This guy must have been twins with KF and separated at birth, as they'd be about the same age and this guy was in full Mexican regalia. He ran about a 16:30, and there was no way I could have pulled out that kind of a time this morning. So I had to feel good about winning my age group, which got me a pair of newfangled cushioned socks.

I forgot how people in Texas are a lot less inhibited about coming up and just talking to you. Several folks after the race did this, including one guy who said he was in his 80's, that this was his God knows how manyeth race, and although he had to run it pretty slow on account of his pacemaker he just couldn't stop racing. At this point I started to feel very uncomfortable listening to him and excused myself, which I realized later on was likely out of the fear that that could one day be me.

The 5k was but a beginning of a marathon day that included breakfast at Denny's, all day at NASA and then the evening in Kemah, a bayside town nearby known for its entertainment district and not getting back to Katy until 9pm.


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