The sun had not yet come up when we arrived at the Sabino High School football stadium track. Tents were set up, people were milling around, the place was coming alive. A few vendors were serving coffee which was a big hit because it was absolutely FREEZING. I was actually wearing a sweater. Me, in a sweater. In Tucson. That's one of the things about Southern Arizona, it might end up being 80 degrees by noon, but if you're out in the very early morning or after dark this time of year, expect to need something extra to keep you warm.
Ed was wearing shorts, but had his compression pants on underneath, plus a long-sleeve running shirt and his hoodie, which he'd remove for his run.
We milled around a bit before picking up his numbered bib and timing chip - a device that looked like an ankle bracelet - that he'd have to wear to keep his time during the race.
The sun had just started to come up at the start/finish line. The 1/2 marathon runners were slated to go first, the 1/4 marathoners second, and the 5K runners last. There were military members in uniform waiting around, event coordinators finishing their setup, and a DJ spinning tunes. Everyone was very cheery!
The Color Guard posted up just before the first turn of the track, waiting for the opening ceremony of the event. There was an Air Force Master Sargeant preparing to sing the National Anthem, and cheerleaders lining the lanes to motive and encourage the race participants. G-O-O-D-J-O-B! Good Job!!
The race started and finished on the on the high school track, but then meandered through the local neighborhood in the very scenic area at the base of the Catalina Mountains. The race course was marked with orange cones and fully staffed.
The 5K started at 7:20 am. Here, you'll see Ed waving to me as he passes, the morning sun kissing his smiling face!
Along the route, Ed said they had live music (an actual band!), photographers taking pictures, water stations, law enforcement, and locals cheering on the runners.
36 minutes and 12 seconds later, Ed crossed the finish line.
He was a little sweaty but still quite chipper. Barely out of breath. Clearly, all his bike riding (in anticipation for the upcoming El Tour de Tucson) has served him well. He's always had great stamina, especially since loading and securing freight on the flatbed is a physical undertaking, but the regular bike riding has really increased it.
Don't tell him I said this, but when he received his race medal and placed it around his neck, he was glowing! Look how cute!
In addition to the medal, he also received a fantastic shirt with the race logo, date, and sponsors on it - white background with a patriotic design for Veteran's Day - and a breakfast of eggs, tortilla, refried beans, bananas, granola bars, orange juice, and coffee.There was a bouncy castle for kids, a kids' fun run, and other areas set up for the 1/2 marathon runners when they finished. Overall, it was a pretty great morning, and afterwards I was able to have coffee at one of my favorite places, which happens to be on the same side of town. I didn't even have to run to get it.
Ed is stirring up some interest with taking the lead in this 5K stuff. Running is not for me - I don't like to move that fast - but he did sign us up for the 11th Annual Vail Jingle Trail 5K in December. He'll run, Kim and I will walk it. There's going to be holiday music and refreshments, and all participants get a race t-shirt and a set of bells.
Jingle all the way, my friends!
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2015: Grand And Important
2014: Winter Is A Table Set With Ice And Starlight
2013: The Romance Of The Road
2012: Celebrate With A Wild Desire
2011: Powerful Stuff
2010: Falling In Love With Ugly
2009: A Love Like This Can Know No Death
2008: Peace To This House
2007: The Sultan Of Love
2006: It’s Even Better Than Arbor Day
2005: Sorry, no post on this day. The blog didn’t start until May 2005!