Saturday morning I woke up feeling lucky. Ok, really I hit snooze on my alarm, because I was tired. After that extra special snooze though, I was feeling alive enough to roll out of bed and do the mad dash to get to the Get Lucky Start line on time.
I swallowed my slew of medication, braided my hair, scarfed down a blueberry cliff bar, and pulled on my pacer singlet and a kilt, some green arm warmers (Ok really they were leg warmers but who would know?), and some kick butt clover sun glasses. I was feeling Irish and ready to go.
Fellow pacer Dan Laplante showed up soon after ready to ride to the race in our fancy limovan. He was decked out in jeans and a t-shirt and clean-shaven. Wait, what? It’s OK, Dan had to trick his dog, Brittany into thinking he was going to work. NO BIG DEAL.
The limovan sped to the Depot Union and we arrived in usual style and timeliness, with hubby at the wheel. We made our way to the pacer table where Dan struggled to get into a kilt and I struggled to figure out how to find a bathroom. Don’t worry, all was well in the end, and soon enough all the pacers were lined up in proper order ready to encourage all the Get Lucky runners on to the finish!
I was pacing the 2:20 group with Yaniha. I love this pace group. It is always a great mix of people and great fun. There are always a few that are doing their first half, a few that are making attempts at a PR, and some that are out to have fun and enjoy the course. This pace group never fails to entertain and is full of smiles, jokes, and encouragement the full way. It’s the best way to enjoy a race!
Here we are taking off:
Get Lucky was no different. I enjoyed talking to all of the runners and hearing about why they were out there, what their goals were, and giving them a nudge when needed. It’s fun to see someone see people smile while they’re running!
The Get Lucky course was an out and back on Shepard Rd. The way out felt amazing. We were pretty sure the weather was on our side. The sun was shining and most in the group were starting to strip hats and gloves and unzipping a bit for ventilation. Some were glistening a bit with the beauty of exertion. There seemed to be no wind at all. Then came the turn around. Spirits were high!
The turnaround was shocking. A blast of artic air hit all of our faces head on. The gloves and hats quickly went back on. Zippers were re-zipped. BRRRRRRR. It was a headwind and it was cold. We had banked quite a bit of time on the way in and so slowed the pace a bit to accommodate. Everyone stayed really positive and fun and took that wind on with all they had. We had a nice strong group of runners with us!
Soon came the up-hills of Shepard. These can be tough as they’re towards the end of the half. My favorite part of this hill was a girl in all black who had started to walk…I told her she was doing great, and there was a downhill coming if she could just make it to the top and she put on some sort of super human strength and took off grinning! A young lady in green was running smiling next to me on the hill the whole time. I could tell it was tiring but she didn’t stop and kept running and nodded at the top. There was a lot of grit on the biggest hill and it was fun to see so many smiles through the hard breathing. One of my favorite things to do is encourage and holler people up hills as there is nothing more rewarding than the feeling of getting a downhill breather after accomplishing the up!
We kept nearly the entire pace group with us until near the finish when most took off at amazing speed. A bunch of rock stars I tell you.
Yaniha and I trotted in looking pretty awesome ourselves right on time at 2:19:41
I would be remiss if I didn’t add something about Adam Warden who paced the 3:00 group. Who is this guy? He’s some superhuman who had a tree fall on him in June, 2013 and broke — ok SHATTERED, his ankle/foot and was told he would never run again. He had a cracked vertebrata on top of that. Pretty amazing, pretty damn amazing.