Okay, so since this race happened on July 4, obviously I'm a bit behind. Hell, I've done my first tri since then. However, I wanted to wait until I had photos and now I do. So yay.
Anyway, this is the fifth year Lone Tree has put on this race and the fifth year I've run it. This is my hometown/neighborhood race and the first 5K I ever ran. So as much as the course sucks (as it has all the hills i always bitch about around here), it holds a special place in my heart. Somehow.
Regardless, this year was going to be fun as I not only talked my dad into doing it again (year #3 for him!) as a walker, my brother, his girlfriend Nicole AND her mom did the race, too. My mom hung out, but as the designated photographer. The vast majority of the photos you'll see in this post are thanks to her.
Now that that's out of the way ... story time. Though we registered ahead of time, Lone Tree decided to do things differently this year and have packet pick-up day of. They also decided to do chip timing, which was AWESOME. So, morning of, we walked down as soon as packet pick-up opened, got our stuff, and walked back home to eat and change.
About a half-hour before the race was scheduled to start, we hoofed it back down to the park.
Brandon hanging around.
Lisa (walked), Nicole (walked/ran), Stefan (walked/ran), Mom (photog), Dad (walked/ran(!))
Me hanging out.
Stefan, Dad, Mom, Nicole, Lisa ... and Brandon wandering off.
Stefan, Dad, Mom and Nicole. Dad's wearing the shirt from year one.
At that point, it was ready to line up and get ready to go. One thing that was awesome already was that the weather was nice and cool, in the low-60s. This is a race that I've run in 90 degree weather in years prior, so the fact that it was cool made me happy ... even if it was a bit humid.
Brandon and I waiting for the start. And yes, that's my lovely, scarred arm. Weee.
Dad, Nicole and Stefan in the walker wave a few yards behind us.
Then, we were off!
Those two tall guys on the right are my dad and brother.
The best thing about this year was that they reversed the course to what it was in year two. Instead of going up Lone Tree Parkway (nasty, long, gradual hill), they took us up the trail that runs behind my brother's house. That hill sucks too, but it's shorter and steeper ... which I will always 100% take over long and gradual.
Brandon and I ran together with the plan of sticking together only for the first mile. I'm a better pacer than he is for that opening mile, making sure we don't go out too fast. Mile one was just over a 10:00/mi, which was super-duper fast for us, but it felt good. Mile two may have been a little short (which I say because it was a 9:something/mile), but it still felt good. Mile three, running down Lone Tree Parkway, doing the loop in front of the library and back into the park to the finish ... was where I started to hurt a bit. Brandon felt a lot better than I did, so he peeled off right after the library loop.
Obviously he finished before me.
Brandon after reentering the park, right before the final curve.
Still, I was 10 seconds behind.
Me at the same point.
This was the first year I finished this damn race in under 30:00, which I attribute to several things ... mainly the great weather and the course reversal.
Gun/Chip Time: 29:29
Net Time: 29:43
Overall Place/Total: 128/284
Sex Place/Total: 54/155
Division Place/Total: 10/24
However, there were still others to finish ...
Nicole, in purple on the right, came in next. She was going to walk, but according to her, her competitive side kicked in. She finished in 32:29.
Who knew my brother was a runner? He whines about it soooo much ... but I guess we Spisaks are just too competitive. He and dad kept going back and forth with running/walking all race ... and Stefan ended up beating him, with a time of 36:23. (and he's sticking his tongue out at mom and a cheering brandon and i, i'm sure.)
Dad! Dad, the walker, who somehow ended up running it into the finish. I'm so proud. *sniff* Although, to be fair, the man did say he wanted to run this thing by age 60 and he's 60 ... Anyway, he only finished 30 seconds behind my brother with a time of 36:51 which is about 10 minutes quicker than the first time he walked this race five years ago. Go Dad!
Lisa, Nicole's mom, as the last one to cross. She's got serious knee issues, apparently, which restricted her to walking only. She crossed in 42:47.
So that was our family affair Firecracker 5K. We dispersed to shower, convened back at my brother's for a barbeque ... and then Dad, Brandon and I went back to the park to watch fireworks in the pouring rain. Totally awesome, I know.
Next (hopeful) update: tri post!