This morning was the annual Independence Day 5K race in Waterford, WI that I have run quite a few time over the past years. In the past, I would try to tun this one for a fast time since it is a very flat course with few turns so made for fast running. But last year I began running this race with my oldest daughter, Melissa, who has been bitten by the running bug.
Once again this year, Melissa and I travelled to Waterford for the 5K with goal of breaking 30 minutes and maybe placing in the top 5 of the 10 and under age group and win a small wood carved plague. It was a nice day, no sun, a little warm, maybe mid 70's by race time at 8:00AM. The humidity from the previous days was mostly gone so good running weather.
The race started and we were off. I had on my Garmin so I could pace us properly from the start. I had to remind her many times in the first half mile that lots of runners would be going faster than us but not to worry as we would be passing them toward the end. We took 2 breaks during the race for small walks, once at about 0.8 miles and the 2nd at about 2.1 miles on the way back. Mile 1 was at 9:24 so we were right on pace to break 30 minutes but the complaining began.
Melissa is a pretty good runner for a 9 year old, but her mind is very weak as a runner. She is only 9 so I give her a break on this but I have to really encourage her to get past the "cramps" and "breathing problems" that she would make you feel is killing her, but in reality, she just doesn't know how to run through a little pain yet. The complaining wasn't too bad as I encouraged her to have controlled and relaxed breathing and to stay at my side instead of behind me.
For just under 2 miles, there was a cute little girl running just ahead of us all by herself. I found out later she was ONLY 5 years old. She was so well composed as a runner, pacer, and being by herself out there. Her Mom and Dad were also running and I believe her Mom won the Masters Division. We didn't see her after we passed her but I think she did really good.
In the last mile, I kept telling Melissa she was doing good and telling her where some of her "competition" was ahead of us as we passed some of them along the way. She was struggling a bit with about a 1/3 mile to go since she could not see the finish line yet and wanted to walk so bad. I got her to keep going and she finished with a great sprint with a time of 28:41, a pace of 9:12.
Now there was almost a big mess up. When the results were finally posted, it showed that she took 8th place in the 30 to 34 year age group. WHAT!?!?! I had filled out her registration so I was wondering if I had put some bad information on the form but with an age of 34 listed, that made no sense on any level. It could be that they entered her info wrong in the data base too, but instead, I just spoke to the guy about to give out awards and was able to get her name place in the proper place, 4th in her age group!
Afterwards, she was very happy and was showing everyone her award, even at her cousin's Birthday Party. She was so proud! And she said she was happy that I pushed her during the race too.
So did you run a 4th of July race today?
Keep on Running!!!