Sunday, March 13, 2011

Race Report - Woodstock's Spring for Kids 5k!

And here we are - race number two in the EPIC 2011 lineup: the Woodstock's Spring for Kids 5k.

Not exactly inspiring weather as we rolled up to the race. And yes, I said "we," as the R's brought along the boy to run the 5k with me. He's getting very tall and very skinny and after we ran a little warmup two-miler a week before the race, I realized it's not going to be long before he's faster than me.


But I digress. We were talking about the rain. It was just misting slightly as we picked up our race numbers, but then it really started to come down as we ran back to the car to take cover. We were hoping that it would pass over before we had to go back and stand at the start line, but it wasn't to be - we lined up at the start line in a decent drizzle.

The race started on Avery Park Drive, just in front of the Rose Garden at Avery Park. So you would think that we might have actually run around the park a bit, right? Wrong. We spent approximately 10 seconds in the Park. As soon as the starting gun sounded, we ran directly around the corner and out of the park, hooking up with the bike trail about a tenth of a mile away from the start.

One thing about running every race in Corvallis is that I know every race course just about by heart. It's nice. The Spring for Kids course followed the bike path downtown, then jumped onto the River Walk along SW 1st St. As I've run that route about 200 times (no, literally), I knew we'd have a very slight uphill to the halfway turnaround, then a nice, gentle downhill all the way home. And lo, it was to be. In the first mile, we had some students in front of us from Crescent Valley High School that were making quite a wall, but after we busted through that, it was smooth sailing.

Payton actually stayed with me until after the turnaround. That little bugger is getting fast - if and when he actually decides to train, he could be a good runner. But since he has not made that decision to train yet, he faded at about the two-mile mark and I kept on with my steady pace pretty much all the way to the finish. Only one obstacle on my way - a little boy about six or seven years old and about three feet tall. It was after the two-mile mark, so this kid was actually running very fast for someone with foot long legs, but when I tried to pass him, he actually kept cutting me off to try to stay in front of me! I'd drift left to go around him and he'd wait to the last moment and then move in front of me. I'd go right, and there he'd go! Hey, I'm all for supporting younger runners, but I almost tripped the little guy to get him out of the way! Finally, I gave a little burst (I don't have a lot of burst these days) and made it around him. Who knew my best rival in the race would be a kid that's probably in kindergarten?

Hit the finish line under 25 minutes, so I was happy there. My pace is slowly but surely coming down. Payton came in only a couple of minutes after me, so I was glad to see he didn't fade too badly.

Probably about 200-400 runners all told. Hard to tell exactly because there were a lot of walkers with umbrellas and coats and who knows if they had a number under all that?

Now I get one weekend off, then it's three races in three weekends coming up.

Boy Howdy...

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