Saturday, July 4, 2015

2015 Firecracker 5k Run for the Food Closet – Troy

Event: Firecracker 5k for the Food Closet, Auburn, Ca
Friends: Many!
Time: 20:21
Place: 1st

This is my 2nd year doing Karen Nickel's Firecracker 5k for the Food Closet.  Usually I'm in San Diego for the 4th of July with my family on vacation but this year I had to stay back because of work and last year I stayed back because of a lung concern from the broken ribs.  I look forward to seeing and running with friends in a low-key event in our neighborhood.

I arrive, drop off my bag of donated canned good, and do a warm-up run with Troy Outman who already finished a 28 mi bike ride!  Warm-up about 1 mi.

Last year I did it in 7:01/mi pace (7:19, 6:33, 7:10) with a sore back.  This year I definitely want to break 7:00 pace.  Also running is 4th grader, Enzo Gallo.  A nice kid and probably the fastest 4th grader around.  I talk to Robin in San Diego where they are getting ready for their own 5k, the Crown City 5k (previously the Coronado Independence Day 5k).  Anna and Ariel are doing it with their cousins.

Before the start, Ellie Nickel and Gia Verdi sing the National Anthem!  Then Karen says a prayer for the race and then sends us off!

Enzo is out in the lead. Then Troy O and Ellie Verdi.  We're all admiring Enzo and giving him some tips to pace himself.  We hit the long Maidu hill.  Troy O in the lead.  I'm pushing to catch up to him.  We both pull ahead of Enzo and Ellie.  It takes me to the top of the hill, with Troy O encouraging me to catch up to him.

Mile 1: 6:47.  That's good with the climb. Now it's down hill.  This is the easy part.  Troy & I run side-by-side and talk.  We both try to jokingly get the other to stop at the do-it-yourself water aid station on the course to hold the other back.

Mile 2: 6:10. At the bottom, we start the gradual push back up to the neighborhoods.  We greet morning walkers on the course.  Through the green gate and onto the street.  I'm pushing with all I've got but Troy is holding back and letting me get ahead.  With hard bike ride already in his legs, I'm not surprised.  More gradual climb to Karen's neighborhood, then a drop down, finishing off with a climb to the finish!

Mile 3: 7:06. The finish!  20:21. That last little climb in the neighborhood is a little hard but makes for a great finish.  I beat my time, averaged 6:42/mi, and enjoyed racing side-by-side with Troy Outman.  "Thank you, Lord, for the opportunity to race and fellowship and share your love with some of our neighbors.  And thank you for the Nickels and all that they do to share your love."