I am proud to have taken part in such a big event to benefit St. Jude's. Going into the race, I wanted to wear my Elijah shirt, but it would have been too hot. So I opted for sleeveless.
Chasen had to complete the final exam for his next-to-last MBA class tonight, so I went to Memphis alone (i.e. no photos - sorry). It was headquartered at the swanky racquet club, and it was very well organized. I thought for a second I was at the Little Rock Marathon! After getting my number, timing chip and t-shirt/goody bag, I headed back out to the car to get organized myself. I had about 30 minutes before the official start of the race. Chasen sent me an audio clip of "Eye Of The Tiger" to my phone. Awww!
As I lined up (thankfully in the shade) it was 93 degrees. Yowsa! But it wasn't too terrible in the shade. Speeches were given, one of which proclaiming that through sponsors and race participants, a check for $57,500 was being presented to St. Jude's. Wow! I have been a fan/supporter of St. Jude's for a while, but now that I live so close, I am more of a FANATIC. It's such an important place, and I plan to do all that I can to support it. 'Nuff said!
The gun went off and off I went! I wondered if I could run the entire race. Well, I ran the entire first mile in 11:38 -- wow wow wow! That was my first solid mile since mid-January. In truth, though, the heat got to me and I did take several water breaks. Chasen insisted that I take a water bottle, so I did -- and boy was I glad. Score one for him (I'll never hear the end of it).
As I began mile 2 I got -- what else? -- a side stitch. I did TONS of walking during mile 2. I finished it in 13:53 (which is spot-on for my 5 AM training runs). Ditto for mile 3 -- side stitch and 13:53.
The crowd/course support was amazing. It seemed that 1 out of 10 houses had their sprinklers going to cool us off. By the time I reached mile 3, I was well-watered, you might say, so I kicked in and hauled my rear all the way home. I did the last .1 in 1:22.
I pondered my goal for this race today and yesterday. I thought, given the heat I'd be facing, 42:00 would be excellent. My much cooler 5 AM 5K runs have netted 44:55, 41:55, 44:48, 42:04 and 41:24. Tonight, in the Memphis heat, I'm pleased to say that I crossed the finish line in 40:47! That is a 13:00 mile average. Yay!
Run. Walk. Cure. I love that!
There are races just about every week in Memphis. I have my eye on one in early-August! Happy 4th, everyone.