A Turkey, a Cheesecake, and a baseball bat

Yes, those were the prizes I won for being the top master at today’s Home Run For The Homeless 4 mile race in Akron.

I had a great race this morning and ended up being the first Master and 28th overall in a very deep race, which had a lot of fast high school and college kids in the mix.

My time was 23:12 (5:48 pace) on a REALLY difficult course, definitely the toughest one I’ve run on all year. That combined with nasty weather (just above freezing, windy and rainy) made this a real ‘character builder’ so to speak. The middle two miles of the race, which went through a hilly cemetery with some serious climbs (which of course were followed by quad blasting downhills) was especially challenging.

My splits were 5:41 for the first mile, which was pretty flat after a 200 meter downhill start. After 800 meters or so there was a long gradual climb up a freeway ramp (I think?) to the mile mark before going down a sharp downhill into the cemetery. There were three big climbs on the paved paths in the cemetery and one big climb right after we got out of the park. Didn’t catch my 2 mile split as at this point I was glued on to a pack of kids I was gaining on and in a total zone. The three mile mark was just after the hill leading out of the cemetery and I hit 17:24 there. My lungs still felt strong, but my legs were feeling trashed from the hills. I forced myself to bear down and just focus on the line of dying high school kids ahead of me. In an act of revenge for getting out kicked by two kids in the Ann Arbor Turkey Trot, I out kicked two high school kids in the last homestretch here!

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