2009 Fitness World 5K

Race: Fitness World 5K

Date: September 26, 2009

Time: 18:05

Pace: 5:49

Place: 1st

This is the second time I have run this event. As I’m still not feeling 100%, and I haven’t been racing much, I was concerned that I wouldn’t have a very good race. Given that I won this race last year, I was that much more concenred.

The CGTC website stated that the race began at 8, so I arrived at 7, only to discover that the organizers have just arrived. I registered at the front desk, and discovered that the race didn’t begin until 9. I had two hours to kill. Knowing that Jason P. would be leading a group of runners from his store, Bull City Running, I drove there (just across the street from Fitness World). He was kind enough to give me a pair of Mizuno Ronins with the promise that I would pay for them after the race. I ran 2.5 miles with him and another runner, and then ran back to my truck for a total of 5 miles. I then went back to Fitness World, and there were now many runners, volunteers, and Carolina cheerleaders awaiting the start of the race.

The race course is somewhat unusual, as it did not start at Fitness World, but on a road in the middle of a neighborhood. As CGTC Thursday group runs travel through this neighborhood (and since I had run the race last year), I knew what to expect.

I also had the opportunity to talk with Christine, a friend and one of my yoga instructors. She was running the race with her friend, Jim.

It was almost 9, so we made our way to the starting line. A man on a bike, who was to lead the runners, said to me, “So, you’ll be the person I’m leading, right?” I said, “I hope so.” There were a good 20 or so boys and girls under the age of 12 at the starting line; thus I feared it would be a crowded start.

The gun went off. While there were a few runners who took off too quickly, I gained the lead within the first 100 meters. I lead the race to the finish.

I could, however, hear a runner close behind me. He had just about caught me at mile 1. I surged on the downhill, and he wasn’t able to catch me.

Jason and Kim P., owners of Bull City Running, were supervising a hydration station at mile 1.5. I heard Kim shout, “Run, Paul!”

I could still hear the eventual second place finisher, and he may have even been gaining on me. (His finishing time this year would have beat my time last year.) I sprinted to the finish, got a quick drink of water, and ran back to run in Christine and Jim, as I had promised.

I met this with about a ½ mile to go. I was their rabbit, and they both picked up the pace. They passed quite a few people. Jim had a very nice finishing kick.

It was a rather uneventful race. I did win a big-ass trophy and gift certificates to Bull City Running and X-pert Nutrition.

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