Will Run for Pancakes!

Gulf Winds Track Club holds a mile track race each August, accompanied by pancakes, and punctuated with the “Hamstring 100” race.  I was fortunate enough to participate in all three this year:  the mile, the pancakes, the 100 (not in that order!).  As a souvenir, each of us got this sticker, which reminded me of this recent blog, which questioned whether a “3.1” car sticker had been sufficiently “earned.”  I can only imagine how the writer would feel about a “1.0” but I love mine!

I had hoped to make a quantitative amount of progress between last year’s BOT and this year’s BOT.  Here’s last year’s time:  11:20.61.  Here’s this year’s time:  11:14.91.  An entire year’s worth of intervals, training runs, and cross training for a measly 5.7 seconds of improvement.

Hmmm…..

This summer, which started off with me vowing to work so hard I would look spent, has ended up with me limping in to the figurative finish line.  Right around the time I started doing turnover drills in early July, my plantar fasciitis started to act up.  Weeks later, a chiropractor who eventually said “go get different inserts at the running shoe store” after sucking up several copays for ultrasound treatments, and many ice packs/heating pads later, finds me without any drastic improvement to brag about. 

But I do have this great memory of yesterday’s mile:  finishing neck and neck with my son (he was so psyched to have found used racing flats at Play It Again Sports):

photo credit: Fred Deckert

and this great memory of being invited to participate in the club’s annual “Hamstring 100 Invitational” (I still don’t grasp the math/logarithm that got me invited but it was a thrill to participate, to come in 4th (yes #’s 5 and 6 are in their 70’s but let’s not split hairs here!)), and a lovely bouquet of roses (the male competitors in the Hamstring 100 get hams). 

photo credit:  Fred Deckert
Lastly, people who don’t know her story won’t know what a big deal this was, but my friend “K,” who was brutally attacked in her front yard, in daylight, several months ago, made her re-entry to running at BOT yesterday.  In the pictures taken yesterday, you can see joy on her face — what a testament to the restorative powers of running (and friendship). 
Another takeaway from this last half of summer, dealing with heel pain, is that I have branched out in my cross training, which used to be walking.  I have pulled the bike out of mothballs and gotten some swim coaching from the fabulous Revolutions Triathlon Coaching.
Is my goal still a sub 30:00 5K?  You bet.  Am I bummed that I made so little progress toward that goal this summer?  Yes.  But I’ll get there — I have told too many people that is my goal and they’re all helping me remain accountable to myself. 
Once I do, I may just have to get myself a “3.1” sticker.  I’ll know why it matters. 
I’ll “run” into you next week, readers!

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