Last Sunday Colleen and I attended the Get Your Rear in Gear 5K run/walk in Edina. This event is a fundraiser organized by the Colon Cancer Coalition, so we decided to participate in memory of Denise. My aunt also mentioned that my grandmother had colon cancer, which I don’t think I knew.
The course started and finished outside Southdale Mall and had a large area set up with informational tents from various organizations. The weather was perfect and the announcer said there were 5,000 people participating. Reg Chapman from WCCO was one of the emcees and did an excellent job.
I hadn’t done much running this month, so I really had no idea what to expect. The course was supposed to be certified, but my Garmin measured it as 2.88 miles. I loved seeing the 21:10 at the finish, but unfortunately the 6:49 pace the official results claimed was nowhere near what I actually ran. I will take the fourth place finish in my old guy age group, however.
Colleen walked the course in under an hour and they had a great food tent set up with all the usual suspects. Oh, and a giant inflatable colon. Get tested, people…
Section 3AA Boys and Girls Track and Field Prelims, May 27, 1986
The 2014 edition of the TC 1 Mile was cancelled due to severe weather
Thirteen years in a row! Minnesota’s Annual Rite of Spring, the Get in Gear races at Minnehaha Park, just keep getting better and better – well organized, the best running value of the year, a scenic course and believe it or not, decent weather for two years straight. Well, OK, today’s easterly 17MPH wind was not so nice coming across the Lake Street Bridge (and up the dreaded hill near St. Thomas), but otherwise it was pretty great running weather – especially compared to the rest of 2014.
After setting a PR last year of 44:40, I was really nervous about trying to repeat anything close to that time. I’m at least ten pounds heavier and another year into the masters category, so there were two strikes against me right off the bat. Throw in the crappy winter for outdoor training and I had no idea what would happen. I started the race with a 6:55 first split, which seemed way too fast and made me panic a little about finishing without having to stop and walk. I was breathing harder than normal and my calf muscles were very sore. The rest of the splits were all in the sevens – 7:23, 7:41, 7:41, 7:37 and 7:32.
My Garmin said the first mile was way off from where the sign was located, but the rest of the course was pretty much spot on. I felt pretty good coming across the Ford Bridge, but knew my final time wasn’t going to be close to last year. The final stretch went OK, but I finished with a watch time of 46:34 (almost two minutes slower than last year).
Some other stats from the results page:
- Official time of 46:35 (7:30 pace)
- Overall: 374 out of 3014
- Men: 281 out of 1338 Males
- Age Group: 25 out of 160 Males in the M45-49 Age Group
The finish area had water and Gatorade this year and the food was back in the main pavilion again. Does it get any better than Great Harvest raisin bread, salted nut rolls, bananas and chocolate milk? There was also a yogurt vendor with peanut butter spread samples, but my hands were full by the time I made it to their table. The shirt was technical again (cotton is dead and gone forever, it seems) and the bags were super nice (with an innovative design).
Up next: TC 1 Mile on May 8 (guessing that PR will be tough to beat too)
Passed the lottery, now need to find the money and hope for good weather…
All these crazy Arrowhead 135 athletes have me inspired to set some goals for 2014 and start to seriously decide on races for the year. I’m currently only registered for one race right now – the Get in Gear 10K on April 26th. I’m also in the New York City Marathon lottery, but will likely email them to take my name out (no money for a full-blown New York trip this year).
So what do I want to do? Registration for the TC 1 Mile opens Saturday and I’ll sign up and try to make it four in a row versus Megan. I’ve got the ultra bug and probably should’ve signed up for the Superior 50K, but that race just filled. Both of their fall races (the 50 and 100) require a previous trail ultra, so those will have to wait. I’m seriously considering the Zumbro 50 that Megan did last year, but it’s coming up soon (April 12th) and I’m not sure I really want to run much outside the next few weeks. Oh, I’d like to do this sometime too…
I still really want to run the Deadwood Mickelson Trail Marathon in South Dakota on June 1st, but that would require at least one hotel night expense. I really missed Grandma’s last year and have a place to stay for that race (June 21st). The other benefit to that race is that since it usually doesn’t fill, I can wait until the last minute and still register.
With New York likely out, my fall marathon spot opens up and I’d kinda like to check Iowa off the 50-state list by running the Des Moines Marathon on October 19th. I’d miss Twin Cities, but those two races are always too close together, so maybe I’ll take a year off from the hometown race.
When runDisney announced the inaugural Dopey Challenge, I was intrigued. The “old” Goofy Challenge of running the half marathon Saturday and the full marathon Sunday was on my bucket list, but I was just too nervous to pull the trigger and try it (even though both my brother Brian and my running partner Megan had Goofy medals in their collections). The new Dopey would add a 5K on Thursday and a new 10K race on Friday, for a grand total of 48.6 miles in four days. Sold!
This was an expensive race entry ($495 early bird), but a lucky slot machine in Kansas justified a one-time splurge (at least in my running-deranged mind). The 7000 Dopey slots filled rather quickly and both Megan and Brian missed out. My brother decided to go Goofy again for the second time, while Megan signed up for the full (her tenth).
The expo opened at 10am on Wednesday and was expanded this year to include the baseball stadium (in addition to the HP Field House and the Jostens Center). There was a separate line just for people who wanted to buy the limited edition New Balance runDisney shoes, which I heard started to form at 4:30am. The Field House had the usual packet pickup, along with most of the race shirts and a new runDisney merchandise shop. Jostens Center held all the rest, including the runDisney booth where I stood by Jeff Galloway again and listened in on a few conversations. With all of the shirts, I left Wide World of Sports with a pretty heavy race bag.
The Family Fun 5K event on Thursday had the latest start of the week, with the fireworks going off at 6:15am. It was fairly warm and humid for the first three races, with a wonderful cold front moving through on Saturday night before the marathon on Sunday. The last three races all started at 5:30am and I’d say getting up so early four days in a row was probably the hardest part of the challenge for me (2:45am on Sunday was just brutal).
I ended up semi-racing the 5K and 10K and dialed down the pace for the last two. Given my relative lack of training the previous month, I was very happy with all of the times:
- 5K – 24:27 (7:52 pace)
- 10K – 51:09 (8:14 pace)
- Half – 1:58:04 (9:00 pace)
- Full – 4:11:49 (9:36 pace)
My brother helped me pick out the cool Pirates of the Caribbean costume for Sunday, while the giant mouse hands and ears made a return appearance in the half. Megan ordered a Duffy costume from an Etsy vendor online and the crowd response was awesome (especially from cast members) – pretty sure she was the only Duffy in the field too.
Spent a little time in all four parks while I was down there, but for the most part, I just hung out with Brian and his wife Patti while soaking in the non-Minnesota winter weather. Thanks for the kind hospitality you two!
Only one other confirmed and registered race entry right now in 2014 – the Get in Gear 10K on April 26th. Lots of others I’d like to do, but we’ll see how much I can budget for entry fees this year…
The typical “year-in-review” posts might be cliche, but they can also be insightful as one reflects and moves forward. I initially wasn’t going to write one, as the year ended on such a low note with the passing of my grandfather (and all of the moving drama at the beginning of the year). But I starting thinking about 2013 golf, running, music and food and decided it was worth hitting a few keystrokes…
The year started off with my otherworldly visit to Streamsong in Florida (Blue #7 above). Walking 36 holes after a marathon isn’t probably something I want to do again, but what a spectacular golf experience. The rest of the golf year was low key, as I played 11 fewer rounds overall (24 versus 35 in 2012) and half as many rounds on The Wilderness (7 versus 15). Scores were all over the map – I had a low round of 84 on Streamsong Blue and a couple of 99s (Streamsong Red and the tips at The Wilderness).
Running didn’t seem all that strong in 2013, but it was my second highest mileage total in the past six years (1029.9 miles) and as I’ve written previously, I set personal records at almost every distance. The cold weather in December really put a damper on things at the end, but I’m excited to return to Disney next week to repeat the marathon experience with Megan and Brian. My personal “Ragnar Ultra” with a great team of people was also a highlight of the year.
When I started researching 2013 music and food, I guess it’s easy to see why I never get ahead financially. I attended 37 concerts and visited 54 restaurants for the first time. I saw three Cirque shows this year, several comedians and a ton of great concerts, both big and small. Tom Petty, Pearl Jam, Macklemore, Mumford and Sons, Bob Dylan and Norah Jones were the biggest names, but I also loved seeing people like Charlie Parr, John Mark Nelson and Bomba de Luz. Several new venues for me too: the Cedar Cultural Center, Triple Rock and the Turf Club all got checked off the list in 2013.
In the food world, the Twin Cities really hit the jackpot with new places this year: The Rabbit Hole, Sandcastle, Buttered Tin, Cossetta’s (remodel), Smack Shack, Borough, Pig Ate My Pizza, World Street Kitchen, Burch Steak, Red Cow and FireLake. I hit up all of these in 2013 (some multiple times) and I can’t wait to continue visiting more new places (Parka, Gray House, Lake and Irving). This was the year of The Lowry for us and I finally made it to a few places I had on the short list (Piccolo, Zen Box, Buffalo Tap, Hello Pizza, Icehouse, Joan’s in the Park, Mystic Steakhouse, Scott Ja-Mama’s).
Aside from the Florida trip, most of my 2013 travel was for business. Sensi at Bellagio was a highlight, as was Bachi Burger off the Strip. I also really liked the Arrogant Butcher in Phoenix, the Calderone Club in Milwaukee, Three Fires Steakhouse in Kansas and the Kitchen Buffet in Iowa. Back in Florida, the new Be Our Guest restaurant at the Magic Kingdom is worth the long lines and the sandwiches at Wawa really earned their northeast legend status.
Happy New Year!