Fitness · Just my Thoughts

Again and Again and Again

This weekend is the annual running of the Boilermaker 15K Road Race. The great part about the Boilermaker is the finish is at a huge party at the F.X.. Matt Brewery where Saranac beer is brewed. The two hour post-race party has a great band and free beer. No, this is not about the race itself. I just saw a tweet from Brad who is running his 10th Boilermaker on Sunday (Good Luck!). This got me to thinking about the races I have run in my three years of racing.

I ran the Boilermaker my first year but didn’t register in time the second year. I got closed out and that first year is the only year I have run it. The only race – so far as there are a couple that may qualify in August – that I have run every year I have been racing is the Skunk Cabbage Classic Half Marathon. Let me tell you it is a miracle I ever went back to run it a second year as my first time on the hard, hilly course I was dead last in the race.

That first Skunk Cabbage was my third race ever. I had run a December 5K and a half marathon just three weeks earlier. Turkey Hill nearly had me done in but I kept going. I was going to finish if it killed me, and for a short period of time, I was certain it would. I remember passing a few people near the point where the race heads back onto the campus of Cornell University. I do not know what happened to those people as they did not run past me. They must have stopped. The photographer for the two races – a 10K and the half marathon – was waiting as I turned the last corner to run to the finish. He, after taking a few shots, ran along with me, having been told I was the last person. The good news was I cut 4 minutes off my time from my first marathon three weeks prior.

The second Skunk Cabbage I ran was a week or two after my first running of the Forks XV. I had run my first marathon in February and it was now April. I was recovered. I cut six minutes off my course time and PR’d. I was so excited. I was also getting closer to my then goal of going under 2:30 for a half marathon. I could not imagine running this course any faster but I would learn many lessons between then and April 1, 2012.

My third Skunk Cabbage was at a peak time in my 2 marathon May training. I knew I was in perfect form for this particular race. I also knew it would be a great indicator of my time for Pittsburgh in four weeks. I almost didn’t make it to the race as I had issues with cars here at my house. The night before I managed to hitch a ride with two other local women. I was hesitant to ride up with most people as I knew that I was a slower runner than most and I hate to keep people waiting. My best half time had gotten down to 2:32 over the course of 2011. I was hoping to maybe get a minute or two off. The ultimate goal was to finish in under 2:30.

I was extremely excited with this particular race and will most likely run it again and again. I finished that third Skunk Cabbage half in 2:29. I have a new goal now, to finish a half in less than 2:15.

Do you have a race that you run over and over each year? What is the most times you have run one race?

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