Monday, September 29, 2008

Akron Marathon: Irish Jig Race Team

For the fourth year in a row I have particapted in the Akron Marathon. Three times running the marathon, and twice now running the 5-person relay. This year I was running the third leg. This worked out great. I didn't really want anything too hilly and just wanted to run my planned race pace for Wineglass Marathon (my first run at Boston) the following week.

The morning went well. I got to meet up with my family at the start. My bro-n-law was running the full with his new flag back pack (more to come on this) he built for the Air Force Marathon a week earlier. We watched the start, then had time to catch everyone heading past mile three.

We then headed over to watch the 8K US Women's championship. We had just missed the start, but still had time to head down to the finish to watch them fly in. Wow. Very fast. Once that was over, it was time to take our positions. I decided to run to the exchange point to get a few extra miles in for the day.

So, here is how it went down...Tom was our lead off and was off to a great start. His hand off went well to Stacey who also ran awesome. Her hand off didn't go so well. Why? Well, I wasn't there. Pretty good reason. Yeah, the most veteran person on the team was tooling around taking his sweet-ass time. I did manage to get to her and off I went towards the University. I had forgot this is actually a pretty cool part of the race. I passed Mom and Dad at one of their usual spots with a wave.

Just after that, I ran into Vince who was running with Mailman Mike just past downtown. Talked them a bit until I hit the downhills heading down to the Towpath section. I did pick it a up a bit here hitting a sub 6 minute mile pace. I backed it off once I got to the towpath and tried to settle back into my planned pace of 7:15.

While on the towpath I ran into tons of folks. E-speed was pacing the 3:50 crowd. Sporting a cool mohawk. Brett with fellow Coach Chef Bill was with the 4 hour crew. By buddy Jim and Rob were there, too. Jim was running his first marathon and was doing awesome. another fine product of VR Training! (PLUG!)

The towpath came to an end and so did my leg. I was the Indian statue and headed to the exchange point where Jeff was waiting for me. We decided it would be more fun to rid back together on the buses so I ran with Jeff up Sandrun. Always a treat. Jeff did awesome despite the extremely difficult portion of the race. His hand off to Missy went...well..fine. Better than mine was! HA! Missy hit it hard back to the finish and brought us in at 3:55!

Way to go Team Irish Jig! Thanks for having me on the team!

Next up...Wineglass Marathon. The big day.