Thursday, April 25, 2013

Linda's Run for the Red Race Report

Submitted by Linda Iroff @LindaofNote

It was one of those cloudy, cold, dreary, damp days when you just want to stay in bed. But with a sheet full of #run3rd dedications to put in my back pocket, I was motivated to get up, get dressed, get a photo and head out for the Run for the Red 5K in support of the local Red Cross chapter.
Now when I say it was damp, I mean VERY damp. Recent downpours caused flooding near the original start location for the race, so it was moved further north along the Black River to the appropriately named Steel Mill Trail. (The race was sponsored by US Steel.)

That's not a pond, that's standing water in the woods!
The turnout was small, about 150 runners, and those who weren’t jogging to warm up waited in their cars until near to start up time. The path followed the river, crossing it twice before the turn-around and return trip. I’d recently been adding a bit of jogging to my walking, and during training was rather disappointed in how short a distance I could go before running out of breath. I found though that during the race, I seemed to be able to go a little further. I tried experimenting with how I held my body and how I breathed to try to increase my stamina. I kept my eye on the young woman a couple hundred yards ahead of me. I never did catch up to her, but I made sure she didn’t get so far ahead that I lost sight of her!

The swollen and muddy Black River.
And I thought of the dedications on the folded piece of paper in my back pocket. Many of them were for friends and their family members, waiting for transplants, facing surgery, mourning lost loved ones, facing terrible illnesses. I thought of how lucky I was to be able to walk, and now run, for them.

I ran the last hundred yards or so, and was thrilled when I saw the time on the clock. My official time was 47:33, a good 2 minutes off my first timed 5K six months earlier. It was good enough to win me a third place ribbon for my age group! As you can tell, that made me happy, despite the fact that my nose was frozen!

Just received this letter!

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