Anyhow, Laura was fine and the race had to go on. After a warmup and saying "hi" to some MN Running Wild friends, I lined up at the start. I chatted with one guy who said he wasn't sure what kind of shape he was in, but he was going to try to run between 1:12 and 1:15. I knew I wasn't running a 1:12 and there was a very slim chance of me running a 1:15, but I thought I might still have an outside shot if this guy didn't have a great day.
I hit the jackpot for weather in this one: mid-50s at the start, no breeze, and sunny enough to keep it interesting. It warmed up as the race went on, but I never felt like weather was a factor.
About 1/2 a mile into the race another guy caught up to me. At this point the first guy I talked to was about 20 seconds ahead. This next guy was very chatty and said we'd work together to catch up to this guy. After about a mile I told him the pace was a little fast for me and good luck. He had on a bright green singlet and I watched him from then until the end of the race. After about mile four I never saw the first place guy again.
The miles between 3 and 6 were tough--lots of hills and I was getting a little down on myself for not being able to hold the pace I wanted--the guy in neon green was pulling farther away. Finally, however, I was starting to pick it up after a long, gradual hill. At the 10 mile mark I was feeling pretty good and was hoping to run the last 5k fast.
Around mile 11.5 I could tell I was gaining on the neon green singlet. Right before mile 12 we crossed I-94 into Wisconsin and I was about 20 seconds behind him. I had a good pace going and I was sure I could catch him.
|pushing to the finish|
|My 3rd place award: a runner frozen in carbonite.|
|You can't even tell that just hours earlier Laura was struck by a small sedan.|
Several friends were out cheering including our good friends Brit and Jared. It was great seeing them and we all enjoyed a delicious brunch at Key's Cafe afterward.