Saturday, December 7, 2019

CIM Relay #22-Robin-2019

Date/Location:

December 8, 2019 - Sacramento, Ca

Distance:

13.5 mi (Leg #1 & 2 of the 26.2 mi Marathon Relay. CIM relay races started in 1995)

Time:

3:26:25 (3 person relay)

Place:

12th out of 143 Female Open

Relay Teammates:

Megan Sebra (Leg #3: 7miles) and Bailey Cossentine (Leg #4: 5.7 miles)

Other Teammates:

Relay

*FCA Endurance:  Isaac Josifek & Troy Soares

*EV Cain Speedsters: Hunter Glass, Leah Booth, Anna Soares & Holden Robertson

*Old Man and the Lobster (Jason and Libby Shykowski)

Track/Local Friends

*Pacers: Jim Kepfer, Michael Cook, Tim Twietmeyer

*Racers: Wyatt Hamilton

This year my main teammate/college roomie, Leonie Alesci, couldn’t make the relay last minute.  Fortunately a longtime friend from our track group and local college phenom, Bailey Cossentine, was available to take Leonie’s spot.  She’ll be running the last leg and will be giving my other teammate, Megan, and I a big boost to the finish.  I’m running the first two legs of the relay, 13.5 miles. 

The “Soares Shuttle” to the start is off as usual at 5:30am!  I’m driving Anna’s teammate Hunter, Troy’s teammate Isaac and Anna’s coach and CIM pacer Jim Kepfer to the start.   They have closed down more of Auburn Folsom Road near the start so I have to take some back roads to my secret parking spot at Beal’s Point. We park and jog to the start.  I can tell this race has grown by the wall of people we run into.  We also see big dump trucks at both ends protecting where the people are gathered, and a SWAT team with fully armed officers keeping their eyes out.  A sad reminder of races and events affected by violent individuals.  Thankful that no matter what happens, the Lord will be there to help me and others…even if that does mean I loose my life.

The starting line seems different this year.  The start is on both sides of the road.  I don’t remember it mattering which side of the road you lined up on.  I lead Hunter to the wrong side but we figure it out in time.  Hunter and I pray and then pray again once we find Isaac.  As we wait a few minutes to start, I look down and notice all the bright and strangely shaped Nike shoes.  They are everywhere and apparently they give a big advantage! Today, i mainly just want to run under 8 min per mile.  I don’t have anything else specific planned.  I have a rain coat wrapped around my waist in case it rains.  I am also wearing a long sleeve FCA shirt and tights.

Ready, set, go!  I can tell right away that I don’t have my jacket wrapped well and try to adjust it.  I drop my water bottle but am able to recover it quickly and re-tie the jacket so it’s snug.

I am feeling surprisingly great but I know I have a long way to go. 

Mile 1 is 7:41.  We are on Oak St. for a long way now.  I hear a lot of footsteps behind me so I know some pace group is approaching.  Sure enough it’s the 3:20 pace group.  It’s probably a little fast for me to stick with but I feel pretty good!  I did average 7:40 pace for a hilly 10K in Auburn on Thanksgiving so maybe this pace will work.

Through Mile 3 I’m averaging 7:42 and still feeling strong.  10 more miles!  I wonder how Hunter and Isaac are doing.  Isaac is doing the first two legs like me.  Hunter is doing the first leg and has about 3 miles more to go.  He’s probably pretty far ahead now.

I hear someone call my name and I look over and see Andrea Glass, Hunter’s mom, and his sister, Ashley, cheering.  That is nice of them to find a spot and cheer us on!

Mile 4. The 3:20 pace group (7:38 pace) starts to pull away.  I’m now holding 7:41 pace and feel any faster would be too much.  I don’t even know if I can hold this for the next 9 miles!  It’s sad to let them go because the pace leader was going to tell some stories. 

191207_cim_relay_robinMile 6. I’m holding 7:41!  The race finally makes a turn onto Fair Oaks.  This is where the first relay exchange used to be.  There are a lot of folks here cheering  I should be getting a text message on my watch from Anna’s group pretty soon indicating that Hunter is done!  Praying for their team to feel strong and content with their efforts.  Anna rolled her ankle recently and has been really busy with school so today could be a challenge.  The whole team has some big goals. 

Just before Mile 7, I get the notice that Leah is off!  The course is now rolling and making it hard to push.  I can feel the Lord keeping me calm and in good spirits so I’m not stressing about it.  I look for familiar runners from the beginning and try to keep tabs on others I’ve noticed along the way.  It’s a nice distraction.

Mile 9. My average has creeped up to 7:43.  I can see I’m heading down towards downtown/old town Fair Oaks.  There are a lot of folks here.  I see a small high school band playing and I run by and give them a high five.  Too bad Anna didn’t get to see them.  I think about her getting ready to run soon.

I am so surprised that I’m able to keep up my pace.

Mile 11.  It is back to 7:42.  Wow, thanks God!  Sensing the end is close, I pick it up. 

Mile 12.  I’m at 7:41.  Wow, maybe I can get it to 7:40 and match my 10k average.  I am waiting to hear that Anna is off.

Mile 13. I get the notice about Anna’s exchange.  I hope Anna doesn’t feel pressure to have to blast her leg of the race.

I make it to the relay exchange at 7:40 pace!  Thank you Jesus!  I find Megan and pass on the timing chip.  My job is done.  Phew!

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RELAY HISTORY

Year

Team Name

Relay Div

Place

Time

Teammates

2019

Catch Us If You Can

Open Female

12th/

143

3:26:25

Robin Soares (Leg #1/2), Megan Sebra (Leg #3), Bailey Cossentine (Leg #4)

2018

Catch Us If You Can

Open Female

13th/

169

3:37:34

Robin Soares (Leg #1), Liesbeth Magna (Leg #2), Leonie Alesci (Leg #3),  Megan Sebra (Leg #4)

2017

Catch Us If You Can

Open Female

11th

3:38:23

Robin Soares (Leg #1), Leonie Alesci (Leg #2), Liesbeth Magna (Leg #3), Megan Sebra (Leg #4)

2016

Catch Us If You Can

Open Female

10th

3:34:22

Leonie Alesci (Leg #1), Liesbeth Magna (Leg #2), Robin (Leg #3), Megan Sebra (Leg #4)

2015

Catch Us If You Can

Open Female

8th

3:32:27

Megan Sebra (Leg #1), Leonie Alesci (#2), Robin (#3 & #4)

2014

Catch Us If You Can

Open Female

8th

3:27:15

Robin Soares (Leg #1 & #2), Leonie Alesci (Leg #3), Megan Sebra (Leg #4)

2013

Catch Us If You Can

Open Coed

10th

3:31:23

Liesbeth Magna (Leg #1), Kevin Magna (Leg #2), Robin Soares (Leg #3) and Megan Sebra (Leg #4)

2012

Catch Us If You Can

Open Coed

6th

3:32:57

Leonie Alesci (Leg #1), Robin Soares (Leg #2), Kevin Magna (Leg #3) and  Liesbeth Magna (Leg #4)

2011

Catch Us If You Can

Open Coed

3rd

3:05:14

Robin Soares (Leg #1), Troy Soares (Leg #2), Liesbeth Magna(Leg #3) and Leonie Alesci (Leg #4)

2010

Catch Us If You Can

Open Coed

2nd

3:13:32

Robin Soares (Leg #1 & 2), Richard Alesci (Leg #3) and Leonie Alesci (Leg #4)

2009

CATCH US IF YOU CAN

Open Coed

3rd

3:08:47

Kevin Magna (Leg #1), Robin Soares (Leg #2), Richard Alesci (Leg #3) and Leonie Alesci (Leg #4)

2008

CATCH US IF YOU CAN

Open Coed

21st

3:27:28

Robin Soares (Leg #1), Courtney Loveday (Leg #2), Richard Alesci (Leg #3) and Leonie Wynhoven (Leg #4)

2007

RIONIE AND SOARES

Open Coed

3rd

2:58:55

Robin Soares (Leg #1), Troy Soares (Leg #2), Richard Alesci (Leg #3) and Leonie Wynhoven (Leg #4)

2006

CATCH ME IF YOU CAN

Open Female

1st

3:00:54

Robin Soares (Leg #1), Megan Canova (Leg #2), Liesbeth Brouwer (Leg #3), Leonie Wynhoven (Leg #4)

2005

DAM GIRLS & GUYS

Open Coed

2nd

3:00:36

Robin Soares (Leg #1), Dick Kirkpatrick (Leg #2), Liesbeth Brouwer (Leg #3), Leonie Wynhoven (Leg #4) (?)

2004

DAM GIRLS & GUYS

Open Coed

14th

3:32:15

Troy, Robin, Liesbeth Brouwer, Leonie Wynhoven (?)

2003

DAM GOOD RUNNERS

Open Coed

21st

3:06:50

Troy-Robin-Leonie Wynhoven-Liesbeth Brouwer

2002

DAM GOOD RUNNERS

Open Coed

76th

4:13:14

Robin, Dave Funston, Kristin Funston, Leonie Wynhoven

2001

DAM GOOD RUNNERS

Open Coed

21

3:56:56

Robin Heidt, Dave Funston, Kristin Funston, Leonie Wynhoven

2000

Un-Named

Open Coed

49

3:48:04

Kristin Matthews, Liesbeth Brouwer, Leonie Wynhoven, Robin Heidt (?)

1999

DAM GOOD RUNNERS

??

8

3:44:09

Kristin Matthews, Liesbeth Brouwer, Leonie Wynhoven, Robin Heidt

1998

DAM GIRLS

?

5

3:28:58

Kristin Matthews, Liesbeth Brouwer, Leonie Wynhoven, Robin

CIM 2-man Relay

Date/Location:

December 8, 2019 - Sacramento, Ca

Distance:

12.7 mi (Leg #2 & 3 of the 26.2 mi Marathon Relay)

Time:

3:16:55 (2 person relay)

Place:

1st of 5 Male Fitness Club relays, 40th relay overall

Relay Teammates:

Isaac Josifec (Leg #1 & 2, 13.5mi)

Other Teammates:

Relay

*Catch Us If You Can (Robin Soares, Megan Sebra, Bailey Cossentine)

*EV Cain Speedsters: Hunter Glass, Leah Booth, Anna Soares & Holden Robertson

*Old Man and the Lobster (Jason and Libby Shykowski)

Track/Local Friends

*Pacers: Jim Kepfer, Michael Cook, Tim Twietmeyer

*Racers: Wyatt Hamilton

5am, chilly, I meet Isaac, my FCA TeamMate at our house.  We make final plans and then Robin drives him and a few others to the start of the California International Marathon.

It’s a yearly tradition which goes back like 22 years for Robin.  Maybe 1/2 as many for me.  But running a relay is really motivating and memorable and I’m glad to be doing it again with Isaac.

I’m not as well trained as last year so the usual goal of breaking 7:00 min pace is being replaced with 7:20 average.  And that’s with an easier leg.  Isacc is going for 7:30 pace on the longer 1st leg.

Doing the 2nd 1/2 of the marathon means I have more time at home.  I spend time with God first, something we make a priority before races because we couldn’t imagine racing without His blessing.

Anna is also starting at the 1/2 way point for her Relay.  And Ariel is coming to help coordinate transitions.  There’s a lot of strategy in point-to-point relay racing!

The 3 of us get to the transition just before the top marathoners come through.  So exciting.  Then we see our local star, Jane Kibii, running in the lead pack of women!  (she went on to win!).

Anna & I warm-up and 1/2 mi away see a marathoner laying down on the sidewalk.  We help him up and I give him one of my gels.  He had problems with nutrition and dropped out feeling terrible.  But he was now walking so we hurried back to our transition point.

Anna and I pray and then she takes her position.  Her teammate, Leah, comes in and she’s off.  I hope it goes well but most importantly I hope she prays if things don’t go well. I’m sure I won’t be catching her or her next teammate so will see them at the finish.

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Start: Isaac comes in!  I’m wearing a black FCA T-Shirt because I forgot my usual yellow one at home.  Hopefully he sees me.  He finishes the 13.5 mi in 1:42:14 for an average 7:34 pace, pretty close to plan! We have a good transition but as I hand him my keys and turn to run I start to trip on someone else.  But I latch onto Isaac’s hand which I just dropped the keys into and it stables me.  Ok, now I’m off.

It always feels so good starting a leg after a hand-off.  But I remind myself there is a 1/2 marathon ahead!  I feel good and hit 7:00 pace but then notice my breathing is high.  I keep thinking it’s 7mi instead of 12.7.  I try to relax.  It’s hard to slow down with all the cheering and wonderful signs.  I’m smiling a lot and admiring the marathoners around me which are so well trained.

Mile 1: 7:14. Ok, now just have to hold this pace for 1-1/2 more hours.  But there’s a slight hill.  The gloves and arm warmers come off.  It’s 63 degrees – not the 40 it has been in the past.

Mile 2: 7:20. My rt achilles heal is a little sore.  A constant ache each push-off.  Usually it warms up after a couple miles.

Mile 3: 7:13. A really good mile but might come back to haunt me.  I’m drinking fluids at every aid station.

Mile 4: 7:26. I’ve slowed it down.  I see a bystander playing a trumpet and hope Anna also saw her.  It’s a slow song, but very well done.  I would love to hear Anna playing right now!

Mile 5: 7:22. This is going to be hard!  If I push too much my foot hurts. Just keep focusing on the Lord..

Mile 6: 7:20.  That was a good mile.  It’s raining now.  It feels good because I’m still too hot with the base layer I wore.  I imagine Anna should be close to finishing her leg and getting out of the rain.  I eat a new Hammer Gel flavor, banana, and don’t like it even though the product is great.

Up ahead I look for the exchange point, but not expecting to see Anna’s team.  I see her runner, Holden, running backwards to Anna.  They exchange something and he takes off again.

Mile 7: 7:22.  I look to Anna and she can tell I’m wondering why they’re so far behind plan.  She says calmly, “I got side cramps”.  I’m immediately proud of her responding so calmly because I know how much she wanted to run her sub-7 pace goal.  Instead, she had to walk parts of it.  “That’s, Ok, Anna, good job!” (I also learned later that the chip fell off the strap requiring Holden to go back to get it). 

I catch up to Holden.  Their troubles (being 5 min off pace) has become my benefit (having someone to run with!).

I love these kids, they’re all polite, hard-workers and actually like distance running! Hunter, Leah, Anna and Holden are 8th graders together at EV Cain Middle School.  Besides running Track and XC together, they’re also part of an Endurance Club at school which Hunter started so they can have even more fun running!  They impress me because I never wanted to run when I was their age.  Last year I got to run with Anna and Enzo.  This year I get to see 2 of their exchanges and get to run with Holden.  He looks calm and strong, but this will be his fastest pace for a long distance so I’m concerned he doesn’t start too fast.

Mile 8: 7:36. Approaching the bridge over the American River.  I tell Holden, “Big hill ahead” and he laughs.  On the bridge it is deafeningly loud!  There is a spin class set up almost the full length of it with an instructor pumping them, and us, up over a PA with music.  They’re pedaling and cheering and holding signs.  It’s quite an experience.  And the work to set that all up.. even with the rain.  Appreciated.

Mile 9: 7:34.  I give Hodlen some advice and remind him to drink, as I take another Hammer Gel and grab a cup.  I see a marathoner go by with a “Look to God..” shirt.  Holden is a Christian and the shirt reminds me that the best advice I can give my young friend is to always look to God.  I tell Holden, “If it gets hard, you get cramps, or something goes wrong… pray.. God answers prayers and helps us”.  He understands and is doing good but I don’t want to lead him too fast so must break away.  As we enter the “Avenues”, I tell him, just like my friend, Dick Kirkpatrick, told me the first time I ran this course, “We’re at 55th St and the finish is at 10th, you can count ‘em down”.  I also tell him, “control your pace and wait to 1 mile to go, and then sprint.  I’ll see you at the finish!”

Mile 10: 7:24. I’m trying to pick up the pace but everything is hurting.  Heel, calf, hip, all the pains coming and going.  They remind me to focus on God.  It’s amazing I’m doing as well as I am.  I remember my first marathon here and pushing these last 2 miles.  Boy, the street signs drop so slowly.  35th St.  I look forward to 20th when I know there’s only 10 more to go!

Mile 11: 7:32.  Can’t bring the pace down. Pushing very hard.  Trying not to look at the street signs.  The road is wide and long.  I can see the palm trees in the distance that mark the Capitol Park where the finish is!

Mile 12: 7:23. This is it, finally!  Just get around the park.  Thank you, Lord.  Every step is sore.  I can’t WAIT to stop!  Coming around the final turn, I quickly see Robin, Ariel, Anna, and Andrea Glass cheering along the finish chute.

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Mile 12.7: 7:14.  I finished with an average 7:27 pace, with the last mile about as fast as the first mile!  Our total is just under 3:17, about 5 min slower than last year but still 1st out of the few male fitness club teams that participate.  Thank you, Lord, for helping me through another tough effort and allowing all of us to finish well in good weather.

CIM Relay-Anna-2019

Date/Location:

December 8, 2019 - Sacramento, Ca

Distance:

7 mi (Leg #3 of the 26.2 mi Marathon Relay)

Time:

53:37 (Relay total: 3:20:46)

Place:

2nd of 11 High School Co-ed Teams (even though they are Jr. High)

Relay Teammates:

Hunter Glass, Leah Booth, Anna Soares & Holden Robertson

Other Teammates:

Relay

*FCA Endurance (Isaac Josifek, Troy Soares)

*Catch Us If You Can (Robin Soares, Megan Sebra, Bailey Cossentine)

*EV Cain Speedsters: *Old Man and the Lobster (Jason and Libby Shykowski)

Track/Local Friends

*Pacers: Jim Kepfer, Michael Cook, Tim Twietmeyer

*Racers: Wyatt Hamilton

I get ready for Leah to come and handoff. I see her in the distance and jump out into the running chute. As she gets closer I get ready. I take the chip off her ankle and put it on mine. I start running. I run around the corner feeling a burst of energy. Everyone's cheering making me smile. I feel good and try to run at the pace dad predicted, it's pretty fast.

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After a while, instead of doing a 6:40 like my dad predicted, I’m running a 6:50. I start to feel a side cramp so I use breathing techniques to stop it. It kind of just stays there as I run.

Mile 1. 6:53.  I get to an aid station and grab water. I'm at a mile and a half and I can't wait for 4 miles where I can take my new Stinger gel. I'm looking forward to trying it out. I see someone dancing around in gingerbread costume and I think that it probably is going to get pretty hot in there.

Mile 2. 6:57. I'm feeling good.  I only have 5 miles left. I continue running and pushing hard. 6:50 mile pace is becoming hard to keep. After a while I come to another aid station. I grab water and drink some.

Mile 3. 7:00. I start to feel tired. I think about taking my gel a little earlier. At 3.5 mi I take my gel and hope it will give me energy.

Mile 4. 7:24. The gel makes my cramp worse. I try to take deep breaths, but the cramp gets worse. I start walking and take deep breaths. I try not to cry and focus on God. I keep feeling like I'm letting all my teammates down. I take deep breaths and try to run again. I  begin to run and thank God for getting me through the cramp. I felt like it was a test for me and I passed because I didn’t cry and trusted Him.

I try to slowly pick up the pace. I'm now kind of running with the marathon runners not passing them any more. I grab water at the next aid station and drink some of it.

Mile 5. 8:57.  I have only two more miles to go. 2-miles seem like forever, though. As I’m running I start to feel the side cramp coming back. I take big breaths like I have been doing. The side cramp makes me walk again but I keep my attitude up. I’m able to run again and I push on through the race.

I get to a mile and a half to go and I know I can't stop. I see another aid station far up ahead with a blow up arch .

Mile 6. 7:31. I feel the side cramp again but this time I don't let it make me stop. I‘m able to run and I grab some water. I run through the arch feeling good and I try to speed up the pace. I only have a 1/2 Mile to go and I know I’m almost done.

It begins to sprinkle on me but at least I'm almost done. It then starts to rain, but I don't mind.  I begin to see people up ahead and know I'm close. I see the relay chutes and my teammate, Holden.

Mile 7. 8:34.  Holden steps out into the runway. I get to him and he takes my chip. The chip falls off but we put it back on. He then starts running. The sprinkling stops.  

I go with Holden’s family to the finish to watch him finish. Holden finishes and we all congratulate him. The whole team did a great job!

Praise The Lord For He Is Good His Love Endures Forever.

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Thursday, November 28, 2019

Run to Stock the Closet 5K-Ariel-2019

Date/Location:
11/28/19, Auburn, CA
Distances:
5K
Time:

27:08 (Unofficial)

Place:

??

Teammates:

Teammates-

10K: Bailey Cossantine, Jim Kepfer, Martin Sengo, Libby & Jason Shykowski, Robin Soares, Troy Soares & Oscar the Dog

5K: Anna Soares, Boatwright Family, Ashley & Hunter Glass and HEIDT Family & MANY OTHER AUBURN FRIENDS

We are praying when they are saying 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Go! I only leave 2 seconds late though. I run up a hill. I see Mr.Kepfer and run with him. We run a little and then Mommy catches up and runs with us. Mr.Kepfer and Mom start getting farther and farther away from me. I do my best to stay with them but it’s too hard.

I know that a friend from Cross Country is racing. So, I go faster. I think I see them in the distance, I not sure but I'm pretty sure. I go faster trying to catch up. I run faster and go downhill. I see a girl and think if this was a race with results passing her would help, but it's not.

I start again picking up speed and get closer and closer to her. I finally pass her. I run down a hill I go pass Ashley and Hunter’s house. I see my Cross-Country friends. It feel weird being close because usually they are way ahead. I cross the railroad tracks and I pass them.

I don't stop running. I keep going fast. I pass Railhead Park. I look behind me and I see Uncle Mate. He's going fast and he might catch me. I run faster. I think I'm close. I run past 7-11 and then I have to cross the street. I run a little bit and I have to cross another street. I see a turkey sign and then I know I'm on track.

I run by a busy road and then my Uncle Matt passes me. I try to stay with him but it's hard to. I run up a hill and down to the finish, I start to go faster as I run to the finish line. I finished!

Run To Stock the Closet 10k (Troy)

Date/Location:
11/28/19, Auburn, CA
Distances:
10K
Time:

46:33 (Unofficial)

Place:

Unknown

Teammates:

Teammates-

10K: Bailey Cossantine, Jim Kepfer, Martin Sengo, Libby & Jason Shykowski, Robin Soares

5K: Ariel Soares, Boatwright Family, Ashley & Hunter Glass and HEIDT Family & MANY OTHER AUBURN FRIENDS

This is so much fun, Robin’s family is visiting and her brother and mom are participating.  Oscar is super excited about all the dogs here.  We’ve worked hard to train him to “heal” and not run ahead.  But with a lot of runners it is still a challenge.

We pray before the start.  I always desire to remain focused on the Lord during a race because I know without Jesus in my life, I wouldn’t have the great memories I do.  Of course it’s easier to do that when everything is going well..

Everybody is running!  We missed the start.. even though we were standing on the start line.  That’s ok, it’s just for fun anyway, but Oscar is beside himself.  As we run along with the crowd up Lincoln St by Victory Velo and the other great shops of downtown, I have to keep calling Oscar to “heal” and stopping him from going ahead.  Perhaps it’s because he’s never seen so many running ahead.  Now we’re going up downtown’s steepest hill, Cherry Ave, and I’m still on Oscar constantly.  Needless to say this is stressful and kind of embarassing because everyone is having a great time and I’m disciplining my dog.  I was hoping to be encouraging others and spreading Christmas cheer rather than yelling “heal” over and over.  I’m reminded how important it is to look to God constantly or even silly things can take me, and my attitude, by surprise.

I catch up to Ariel and I’m excited to run with her for a bit.  But then Oscar runs in front almost tripping Ariel!  Even this short moment of joy is cut short.

Mile 1. 8:10.  Up Pleasant Ave hill, I’m determined to push the pace and try to catch up to Anna and Hunter.  I pass some of the same people over and over (since I stop for Oscar multiple times).  But at the top, where it levels out, and now farther ahead with fewer people, Oscar gets calmer and I’m reminded to enjoy this really “fun” time Smile.

I catch Robin and Jim Kepfer.  We see Hunter and Anna ahead.  We all comment how it’s becoming impossible to catch the “kids”.  But I’m determined to try and pull ahead.

Mile 2. 7:36. A long downhill, maybe I can catch up.  I do catch Hunter but remain 200 yds behind Anna.  Up along the gov’t buildings back to the Town Square starting line, I know it’s Oscar and it’s the last chance to catch her before we start our 2nd lap.  I’m surprised she’s going so fast even with another 5k ahead.

Mile 3. 7:13.  We come through the Square, heart racing, and my nephew gives me a high-5 at the same time I see Anna finished.  I’m winded and can barely say “Good Job”.  I didn’t realize she was doing the 5k, but it makes sense now.  Oscar and I now have a goal to catch a girl way up ahead.  I also feel like I want to make up for the all the stopping early on.  We push hard up Cherry Ave.  And come fast down by the High School. However, we’re now passing 5k walkers and Oscar thinks we’re behind again so I still need to be on him, otherwise all the training might be undone.

Mile 4. 7:27. Back up Pleasant and around the Overlook Park.  I see the Boatwright family all walking together and having a good time.  It’s a great reminder of the family moments and memories being made all around us.  I see Tony Lewindowski, and many other friends.

Mile 5. 7:32. Down Sacramento St, walkers on the right and cars on the left, I’m careful to keep Oscar out of the way of each.  Every once and a while a dog or person will move out and there’s a close call.  Thank you, Lord, for preventing any collisions.  “Hi Troy!”  It’s Robin’s mom, Jan, doing great in the 5k!  We push as hard as we can by the gov’t buildings again but can’t catch the girl ahead.

Mile 6. 6:44. Whew!  A great push and we’re done!  Sorry, Lord, I didn’t rely on you more.  Lesson is to go into even easy events with as much reliance on God as the hard events. 

It was great to see a lot of wonderful Auburnites, push hard, and be fortunate enough to have a wonderful family.. and a wonderful dog Smile

Run to Stock the Closet 5K-Anna-2019

Date/Location:
11/28/19, Auburn, CA
Distances:
5K
Time:

48:23 (Unofficial)

Place:

1st Female Overall?

Teammates:

Teammates-

10K: Bailey Cossantine, Jim Kepfer, Martin Sengo, Libby & Jason Shykowski, Robin Soares, Troy Soares & Oscar the Dog

5K: Ariel Soares, Boatwright Family, Ashley & Hunter Glass and HEIDT Family & MANY OTHER AUBURN FRIENDS

5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Go! I start to run through downtown winding through all the people. Up ahead I see young kids going all out. I know that there are going to burn out, but it's fun to watch them run. I was just going at a fun pace because I had gone hard during a race not too long ago.

I start to climb up a steep hill and try not to let my excitement make me go faster, which would waste my energy. I get to the top and begin to run down the hill. I run past the high school and through the neighborhoods. I turn onto the main road in downtown and see some of the kids that were ahead walking or sitting on the sidewalk. I was right when I said they might blow up from running so fast.

I then turn and begin to run towards Railhead Park. I pass my friend’s house and begin to run around the park. After a while, I look behind me and see Dad running with his friends. I tell him that I will beat him in the 5k. I didn’t hear what he said and kept running. I look back again and he seems closer to me. I start to speed up.

I am running on Auburn Folsom road now and I know I’m close to the finish. As I’m speeding up I pass a few people. I cross an intersection and keep running on the sidewalk. Dad isn’t getting close to me now but I keep up this pace.

I turn the corner and see a girl in white up ahead. I push to get closer to beat her. I pass her at the top of the hill and run down towards the finish.

I finish and thank God. My Dad actually is doing the 10k. He thought I was doing the 10k as well and that he would catch me after I burn out. I encourage my Dad as he runs past for his 2nd lap. It was fun to enjoy the race, but it got hard towards the end.

Praise The Lord For He Is Good, His Love Endures Forever!

Run to Stock the Closet 10K-Robin-2019

Date/Location:
11/28/19, Auburn, CA
Distances:
10K
Time:

48:23 (Unofficial)

Place:

2nd Female Overall?

Teammates:

Teammates-

10K: Bailey Cossantine, Jim Kepfer, Martin Sengo, Libby & Jason Shykowski, Troy Soares & Oscar the Dog

5K: Anna & Ariel Soares, Boatwright Family, Ashley & Hunter Glass and HEIDT Family & MANY OTHER AUBURN FRIENDS

It’s great to be home for Thanksgiving and hosting my family!  We head down to Main Square Auburn and donate our canned goods to the local food bank putting on the race. There are no bib numbers, race results or awards but just a bunch of folks coming out to run (easy or hard) on Thanksgiving morning.  It’s like a mini reunion with many of our local friends.  Thanking the Lord that the rain storm has subsided!  It is still cold and cloudy.

Troy, Anna, Ariel and I say a prayer and just as we are finishing up, the race starts!  We quickly jump into race mode and take off. 

True Auburn style, we start running uphill into Downtown Auburn.  Then up behind downtown and past Placer High School.  The football team is practicing on their wet, new field for the playoff game coming up this Saturday.  Dedication!  I’m running with Jim Kepfer, Anna’s coach, and Martin Sengo.  Up ahead are Libby and Jason Shykowski.  Troy is behind us with Oscar and I can tell Oscar is not on his best behavior.  The excitement of all the runners to chase down is probably the issue.

MIle 1 is 7:55.  Glad to see that I’m able to run under 8 min pace.  Jim and I catch up to the Shykowski’s and pull ahead of Martin.

Up another hill along the Fairgrounds.  I see one of Ariel’s cross country teammates running with his cousins.  I tell him good job.  I’m surprised to see Anna and Hunter ahead.  They are cruzing along comfortable and not at a blistering pace today.

We run past Railhead park where a morning pick-up football game is starting. 

Mile 2 is 7:49.  Great!  Troy and Oscar catch up to us and go by.  Anna looks back and sees them coming and takes off.  Up another hill past the Courthouse building and then a bit more up to the police station.  I pull ahead of Jim. 

MIle 3 is 7:29 and my average is 7:42.  I hope I can maintain this when I repeat the loop!    

I pass the starting line and start the 2nd lap.  Troy and Oscar have pulled ahead by quite a bit.

Mile 4 is 7:52.  My average pace has creeped up after climbing up through Downtown.  I hope to make up for it later. 

Martin catches up to me and we chat for a bit.  He then pulls away after the climb past the fairgrounds.  There are a lot of walkers and dogs doing the first loop.  I see familiar families like the Boatwrigthts from our church and Life Group.  I keep my eyes open for my mom.  I hope to see her along the way!

Mile 5 is 7:43.  My average is getting close to 7:42 again.  Just got to keep trying.  I push to try to catch up to Martin.  Just then I hear my mom say “Rob!”.  I was focused ahead at that moment,  I wasn’t looking for my mom.  I wave over my shoulder and say “good job Mom!”

MIle 6 is 7:08 and my average is under 7:41.  Yay!  Thank you Lord!  Once past the police station it’s all downhill!  I push hard and finish across an imaginary finish line.  Done!  Thank you Lord!  That was a fun start to the morning.  Time to regroup with the family!

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Run For the Mandarins 10K-Anna-2019

Date/Location:
11/24/19, Auburn, CA
Distances:
10K
Time:

41:51

Place:

1st Female Overall, 2nd Overall

Teammates:

Teammates-

10K:  Hunter Glass

5K: Ariel Soares & Ashley Glass


10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, GO! I start running downhill towards the exit of the fairgrounds. I am running with a friend, Hunter, for the 10k. At the exit, I turn up the hill. I try to keep a good pace. I am hoping to get an 7:20 or a faster pace. My pace right now is around 7 min. I feel slow, but I know itÅ› just from the excitement from the beginning of the race. At the top of the hill, I see my Dad with Oscar. This morning Oscar had escaped and decided to walk himself. It was good to see that my Dad found him.

I run around Placer and see my Mom. She cheers me on and I keep running. There are about three grown-ups ahead of me. We turn up another hill and I pass a grown-up. I’m in 4th right now with Hunter ahead of me. We get to the bridge and a train comes around the corner. It is cool to run across the bridge when the train is going to go under. I then run through the neighborhoods. I turn left down a road I have never been down before. A band member from school was directing the runners cheered me on. It’s flat but then there is a hill. The hill first looks short, but it ends up being long. We make some detours through the neighborhood. It is cool to be in a new neighborhood. I then run down a hill towards the train tracks. I see an aid station worked by kids at my school. I grab water and start to run towards Railhead.

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I pass Hunter at the aid station. I have energy, but I am tired. The arrows on the ground change to green it seems. I run around Railhead and the green chalk says 3 miles. Halfway finally! After running around Railhead, the arrows point  right. I turn right and see the lead biker biking back with the grown-up ahead of me. I thought we were going to do an out and back, but the biker told me to turn around (wrong way). I run back and have lost some time. Hunter has gotten closer to me. I try to regain my distance but it’s hard. We turn up a steep hill and my legs start to hurt. I am content though if Hunter passes me.

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At the top of the hill, I turn and see my dad. He cheers me on. I keep running up some hills and I see that the course starts to head back to the finish. It is flat and I see an aid station up ahead. I know the person working there and ask for water. He is trying to fill up water but I pass him before he finishes filling up the cup. I turn on a road and it’s flat. My legs start to feel heavier. I run down a steep hill and my legs hurt but at least I’m not using much energy.

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I turn and start to run around Railhead again. All I have to do is run around Railhead, into the fairgrounds and I’m done. My legs get heavier as I run. I start going uphill and I use the momentum of the downhill to get me up. At the top of the hill, it’s hard to move my legs. I use the downhill to regain my strength. There are two hills to go. On the next hill, my legs are getting harder to move. My goal is not to walk and run the whole way. I finally get to the top and coast down. At the bottom of the downhill, I see Leah, my BFF. She cheers me on and it gives me energy. I tell her thanks and run up the last hill. I run into the fairgrounds and all I have to do is coast all the way to the finish. I run in and point to God. HE kept my legs moving. I collapse after I finish and rest. I made it!  Thank the Lord. I got 1st woman and 2nd overall. The leader went the wrong way so I moved up to 2nd.

Praise The Lord For He Is Good, His Love Endures Forever!

Run For the Mandarins 5K-Ariel-2019

Date/Location:
11/24/19, Auburn, CA
Distances:
5K
Time:

25:09

Place:

2nd Female Overall

Teammates:

Teammates-

10K: Anna Soares & Hunter Glass

5K: Ashley Glass

5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Go! I start to sprint and then I slow down quickly remembering that this is a long race. I go at a fast pace that feels good. There are just three people (all kids) ahead of me. A grown-up passes me. I try to stay with him. It's hard but I stay with him for a while.

I’m breathing hard. I run up a hill and turn. It’s getting hard to stay with the guy and I am falling behind. I am running pretty fast I go up a hill and then cross the bridge. I go down a hill. I keep running I see Mommy. She encourages me. I run harder. I see our friends Laurel and Ruby they also encourage me. IMG_20191124_084151285IMG_20191124_084324950

I go down a very big hill. I pass the guy who passed me earlier. I try to catch up with the rest of the group. I am 5th right now. I can see the first girl (who is a kid). I start to run faster, but it's very hard. She seems to run faster.

We go up a path and down. We run to the train tracks and I see Leah's brother, Emerson. I see Mom and Dad. They cheer me on. I’m almost to the finish line. I run faster. I know that I won’t be able to beat the girl but I still try. I sprint as fast as I can down the hill and into transition. I got 5th place and 25:09.


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Sunday, August 25, 2019

Good Dog/Dirty Dog 10K–Robin-2019

Date/Location:
8/25/19, Granite Bay, CA
Distances:
10K
Time:

49:40

Place:

2nd Overall, 1st w/No Dog

Teammates:

Teammates-

10K: Oscar the Dog & Troy Soares

5K: Ashley & Hunter Glass

Anna was going to race this morning but she has rolled her ankle and will need a few more days of healing.  She’s got cross country meets on the horizon so we’ve got to keep her healthy.  Bill at Total Body Fitness has graciously allowed me to take her spot in the 10K in the no dog category at the last minute.  So appreciated!  I haven’t been training a whole lot lately so not looking forward to the discomfort that comes from racing.  I’ve been busy supporting Troy through his Ironman, Troy/Anna through their recent 1/2 Marathon (Anna’s first) and getting settled into the school year schedule.  It’s good to have something get me out and going.  I thank God that I can even jump into a race last minute! 

Our friend Chad Glass is doing the 10K with us.  His kids, Hunter and Ashley, are doing the 5K.  He brought his mom along to watch.  It’s great to hang out before!

We pray and then line up for the 10K.  We are running the 10K course twice.  Oscar and Troy are teaming up for the second weekend in a row.  This dog LOVES to run so no prob for him!

Mark from Total Body Fitness starts us off.  It’s a quick ready, set and go!  In the first stretch Troy and Oscar pull up to front.  I’m following a few non dog runners like me and a girl with a border collie.  Within a half mile we are on sand.  It’s tough but I’m able to power through.

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Mile 1 is 7:42.  I’ve been able to pass the non dog runners.  I just have the border collie team and Troy/Oscar ahead.  We get to the levee and I can see the aid station and the girls.  I grab some water and wave.

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Mile 2 is 7:28.  Feels like a sufferfest already but I’m gaining on the border collie team.  It motivates me to keep pushing.  Pretty soon I’m able to pass them up.  Thank you Lord for helping me persevere!

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Mile 3 is 7:52.  I see Ariel and she tells me Chad hurt himself and is in the medical tent.  I say a prayer for him. 

Mile 4 is 8:02. I’m all alone now…and trying to stay motivated to push!  I’m redoing the same miles which is tough mentally as well.

I’ve made it back to the levee.  I’m catching up to the walkers in the 5K.  It’s no problem until I hit the single track.  It’s hard to pass folks with their dogs which is totally understandable.  A few times I have to slow to walk briefly. 

Mile 5 is 7:58. Tired but almost done!  I see a young girl with a dog and I realize it’s Ashley!  I catch up and tell her good job. 

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Mile 6 is 8:01. Ok, the finish is right around the corner.  I here my family cheering for me.  Just a bit more!  I cross the finish line.  Thank you Jesus!

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Troy and I find Chad in the medical tent with a severly rolled ankle.  We pray for him.  We send him off with his mom to get some care.  We wait with Hunter and Ashley for awards!  Then we all head off to our house for a quick change before church.  I love being able to race and still get to church!

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Good Dog/Dirty Dog 10K-Troy & Oscar-2019

Date/Location:
8/25/19, Granite Bay, CA
Distances:
10K
Time:

49:40

Place:

1st Overall

Teammates:

Teammates-

10K: Robin Soares

5K: Ashley & Hunter Glass

We always have fun running the dog races that TBF puts on at Granite Beach.

Oscar and I are coming off the 1/2 marathon so this shouldn’t be too hard.

As always, I really what to race to glorify Christ in some way.  It’s hard running a 10k, but I know God always gives me a little more energy to be concerned for others, cheer for them, and be prepared to help if needed.

Today is extra special because the Glass Family (Chad, Hunter and Ashley) are all racing!  Anna isn’t because of a hurt ankle.

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We take off and Oscar is, as usual, too excited for the 1st mile

Mile 1. 7:31. We are out in front and he calms down.  He’s getting better all the time and now I feel I can really run normal and focus on people and aid stations better.

I work on form.  It’s a warm day and I prepare for the first aid station.  I tell Oscar, “Water” and he runs ahead right for the doggy pool.

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Mile 2. 7:06.  A fast mile.  We’ve done this course before so I’m better prepared for where the water stations are.

We’re running well and keeping a good pace.

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Mile 3. 7:26. When we come through for lap #2, Anna tells me that Chad fell and may have broken his ankle!  I’m saddened to hear that because he’s training for a big race and had been looking forward to it for years.  I pray immediately that it won’t be bad.  It’s hard running when you just want to find out more about an injured friend.

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Fortunately Hunter and Anna keep me posted. 

Mile 4. 7:28.

Mile 5. 7:15. I pass his daughter Ashley doing the 5k but I don’t tell her so not to scare her.

Oscar and I push the last mile hard and finish well.

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Thank you, Lord, for blessing us with being able to run.

We immediately find Chad and help him get transported home.

Everyday is a blessing and we never know when things will suddenly change.  Thank you, Lord, for having a plan even when our plans have to change.

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Sunday, August 18, 2019

Running with the Bears 1/2 Marathon-Anna-2019

Date/Location:
8/1819, Greenville, CA
Distances:
1/2 Marathon
Time:

1:46:24

Place:

1st, 15 and Under

Teammates:

TeamMates/Friends: Oscar the Dog, Troy Soares

IMG_20190817_065102135_HDR10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Go! I start running downhill and then onto a flat road. My pace is too fast so I slow down. My dad runs ahead because he is doing a faster pace.

Mile 1IMG_20190817_070932802_HDR. 8:19. My goal is to do an 8:20 min pace. It feels really easy right now like I'm going 10 min pace. As I’m running I start to talk to a guy. We have a good conversation and after I’m done talking to him I pick up the pace because I’m now a little behind. We start to run in a small looking forest. It’s nice and cool and I enjoy running. I can see my dad running up ahead with Oscar. A lady with her dog is not too far behind. I don’t see any other dogs running. After running for a bit we turn onto another road.

Mile 2. 8:11.  I am catching up to a girl and a boy. They look like brother and sister, I’m not sure. We run along a winding road and a sheepdog barks at me.  We are running around a huge valley and there are a lot of farms.

Mile 3. 8:15. Around the corner, I see an aid station. The theme of the aid station is the 80’s. Before we started, the race director told us that at the end of the race you get to vote on the best aid station. The aid station that wins will get a lot of money. The people at the 80’s aid station are all dressed up and playing music not too loud. I grab water and continue on.

Mile 4. 8:17. The roads are winding and go uphill and downhill slightly. It’s cool to see all the houses, farmland, and tractors. Feels like the old times.

Mile 5. 8:11.  My left Achilles starts to hurt but I just trust that God will get me through. I’m thankful though that it isn’t my right foot because I had just recently twisted it and I am glad it is holding up.

I make sure to check my pace. I’m at 8:14, so I try to take it easier. I check my watch again and it’s at 8:16 so I keep the pace. My time shows I will be done in about an hour. It’s a long time but I know I will finish.

Mile 6. 8:09. After a while, I come to another aid station.  I grab water and take a gel. I run across a bridge and am now on a straight road. I check my time and pace. I’m ahead of pace at 8:16 and have about 40 min left.

I feel good and just stay at the pace and try not to go faster so I don’t get tired out. I just hit 6 ½ miles and am halfway done. Even though it’s half way it seems like the race will be done very soon.

Mile 7. 8:20. After running a while I see a girl with her dog up ahead. I remember seeing her running with dad in the beginning. She has fallen behind. I catch up to her and we talk and run together. I now see the other road that leads to the out and back spot. I turn onto it and continue running with the gal. I see the top runner in the half coming back. She is really fast and I start to count the places to tell dad what place he’s in. I see dad and tell him he’s 5th overall and 2nd man. He says ok and I keep running.

Mile 8. 8:22. . . I see the turn around up ahead with an aid station. The theme is beach, and it’s really big and beachy. They ask us to nod our head if we’re doing the half because the marathon was also going on. I nod my head and go around the turn. I ask for water and drink. The girl running with me stops and lets her dog go in the dog pool they have. I guess that's how she fell behind Dad. I start heading back. I pass the long straightaway road where I caught up to the girl and head towards the finish. I am about 4 ½ miles to go and I already feel myself picking up the pace.

IMG_20190817_090142358Mile 9. 7:57. My foot pain starts to go away and I thank God for the help. I am going a little faster and don’t worry about my pace. I notice that my Garmin beeps about .1  miles before the mile sign. I start to cut corners as best as I can so my Garmin will line up with the mile markers.

Mile 10. 8:04. There is a steep hill. I remember the man I talked to in the beginning said there would be a big hill at mile 10. It is steep but I don't mind. I get to the top and there's an aid station. I take my gel and drink water. The gel isn't that tasty. It’s a new flavor and it’s too thick. There’s yummy looking fruit at the aid station but I’m almost done.

Mile 11. 7:44. As I run around the mountain I have 2 miles left. I think I see the finish far in the distance but I’m not sure. After I round the corner I see another little valley to go around. I’m not sure anymore if that was the finish. I start to go around and hit another aid station. It is a cute “under the sea” looking station but a little small. I grab water and continue on. I am running around the valley and am now sure that the place I thought was the finish is the finish.

Mile 12. 7:28. I hit one mile to go and push on. I am going faster now and feel I’m getting closer. I remember a 13-mile sign around the corner when I had taken the bus to the start. After a half mile I know I’m close. I start to go around a mountain and know that the last turn should have the 13-mile sign. I continue to run around the mountain. It is a long turn, but then right around the corner is the 13-mile sign.

Mile 13. 7:45. I can now see the finish up ahead. I can also hear my family cheering me on. I start to run up to the finish line and the race director encourages me. I run in and point to God. Everything hurts afterward, so I go put my legs in a huge bucket of ice and water. It was so cold but I knew it would help my legs.

Praise The Lord For He Is Good, His Love Endures Forever.

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Saturday, August 17, 2019

Running with the Bears 1/2 Marathon (Troy)

Date/Location:
8/18/19, Greenville, CA
Distances:
1/2 Marathon
Time:

1:42:10

Place:

1st, 50-59; 3rd Overall

Teammates:

TeamMates/Friends: Oscar the Dog, AnnaSoares


Not only Anna’s big day today to run her longest race, but Oscar’s big day to see if he can run 8min pace for a 1/2 marathon!  Already have run 18mi with him during marathon training, but that was much slower.

IMG_20190817_064952943_HDRSlept good last night in a cabin at Copper Creek Camp.  It was totally quiet!  Although I did have a nightmare that Oscar was wreaking havoc with other dogs at the race because I wasn’t watching him.

We drive to the shuttle pick-up in a pasture in Greenville and get attacked by mosquittos.  Anna & I get on the bus, almost forgetting our bibs.  Oscar has to wear a muzzle due to race liability rules, but he’s getting comfortable with it after traIMG_20190817_065127410ining him yesterday.

It’ll be perfect temperature, perfect course (small rolling hills counter-clockwise around Indian Valley), and perfect for Oscar with Doggie water and treats along the way.

Robin & Ariel are supporting us and pray together before we start.  I still have the Achilles injury and hope it won’t hurt much.  Anna is coming off a sprained ankle injury.  Nothing wrong with Oscar.

During our warm-up my Achilles hurts.  Anna seems good.  Plan is 8:00 pace for me and 8:20 for Anna.

National Anthem.  Trust God.  Hear we go!

Starting, Oscar is super excited of course and pulling too much.  I get him under control and now we’re rolling better.  Anna slightly behind me says, “8:20 feels really easy”.  I’m glad to hear that.  I won’t be able to coach her through it so I hope she keeps it easy for a few miles.

My heel is hurting.  I focus on the Lord and remember the walk-run form that helped at Lake Placid.

There are a few other dogs but only one is challenging us.. Bax, a Burmadoodle, and his owner, Angela.  But Bax was too nervous to do his business before the race but now’s he ready and suddenly stops.  Oscar and I move ahead.

Mile 1. 8:08. Bax is back!  And now leading.  His owner dumps the doggie bag in a conveniently placed garbage bin along the road.  At the first turn a few volunteers greet us and cheer.  Otherwise it’s just us, the beautiful hills on our right and the peaceful valley on our left.  Bax and Angela running well.  Oscar is eager to catch them so we push a little..

Mile 2. 7:44. We catch them and do introductions.  They are both nice runners.. but Oscar is quickly focused back on the road ahead and doesn’t look back.

Mile 3. 7:33. Aid station!  60’s theme. Cool music, lot’s of enthusiasm.  Supposedly they’re giving $1000 to the best aid stations so I remember this one well.  I drink a lot of water since I didn’t before the start.  Oscar doesn’t need anything yet so we lose little time.  Bax, however, takes a stop and we gain another 20 sec gap.  There’s about 6 runners ahead spread far apart.  The road is so pleasant.  I have good energy but try to keep near the plan.  Oscar runs smooth and true.  I point out some “working dogs” to him that are hearding cows on a farm to the left.  He’s interested for 1 sec and then back to the big race.

Mile 4. 7:52. We pass a runner taking walking breaks.  If I look back I can sometimes see Anna’s yellow FCA shirt.  I pray that she’s doing well and the ankle is holding up.

Mile 5. 7:50. I don’t feel any pressure for myself and would be fine going easy.  But Oscar’s been looking forward to this day and we’ve also been wondering just how fast he can go.  For that reason I know I must run the best that I can today!

Mile 6. 7:46. There’s the aid station ahead.  I take a gel and then tell Oscar, “Water!” and give him leash as he heads for the doggie pool.  I down a couple cups of water.  He drinks, cools his paws, lays down real quick, shakes and he’s ready to go!  On the main road. Pushing harder to make up lost time.  I look back and see Anna running with Bax and Angela about 2 min back.  I’m glad she’s made friends.

Mile 7. 8:14. We see a helicopter fly overhead and wonder if it’s headed to the race finish.  I’m really looking forward to this short out-n-back because it’s only 4 miles after that!  Plus Oscar and I can see competition ahead and get status on Anna behind.  A woman is leading the race.  Then a guy who yells to us, “The Canine record is 1:45.  Don’t beat it because it’s mine!”.  I tell him thanks for letting us know and immediately things just got really interesting to Oscar..

Mile 8. 7:31.  Fastest mile yet.  “Beach theme” Aid station is awesome.  I get water but Oscar ignores the treats and water and is anxious to head back.  There’s Anna, Angela and Bax.  Oscar tries to run over and greet them.  I ask Anna how’s she feeling but she’s excitingly telling me we’re 4th place.  I figure that’s a good sign she’s feeling fine and thank the Lord for answered prayers.

Mile 9. 7:18. Even faster. But I start planning our next pit stop.  I see a small non-doggie-pool aid station and verify there’s another up ahead.  We’re definitely on pace to break the record but we both want to see by how much.  We’re gaining on a woman ahead.  Going up a slight hill, 2 white dogs suddenly jump out from a property and startle her.  Then the big one comes at us.  I sternly tell him to “Go home!” and he leaves us alone.  Oscar isn’t phased, he’s got a race to run.

IMG_20190817_085731574_HDRMile 10. 7:32.  A significant climb.  Only one on the course.  It’s warming up but this side of the valley is shaded.  Nice!  Yes, at the top is the aid station.  I say, “Water!” and Oscar runs for the doggie pool.  The volunteers think I’m demanding water and run at me with cups.  I do take a couple and tighten my shoe as Oscar does his routine.  Drink, bathe, shake and go.  I feel good that Oscar is refreshed for the last 3 miles.  No more stops till the finish!

Mile 11. 8:09.  Great split even with the stop!  We pass another runner.  We stay on the left side, even though the road is winding, so Oscar can choose the dirt shoulder when he wants.  He’s running so well.  He pulls ahead a little but when I say “heel” he eases back alongside so I can give him a pet.

Mile 12. 7:19.  I’m tired, both feet are hurting, but Oscar is still eager, running slightly ahead.  I thought he might show signs of slowing by now.  I thank the Lord we are about done and the great pace He alowed us to have.

Mile 13. 7:24. Up ahead I see Ariel, and then Robin.  And the helicopter we saw now landed by the finish.  I thank God, turn up the gravel and we break the tape for first Canine Runner! 

Finished at 1:42:10, 7:48 pace.  Oscar got to stand on the podium. 

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And he was fine the rest of the day and showed no soreness.  But his dog-naps were longer.