The heart of Philadelphia.
The largest 10 mile race in the country.
40,000+ runners all heading through the city at one time.
And last but not least, the final goal I have set for myself when I started all this.
Oh, and one more thing: dead straight with a net elevation loss of 165 feet.
I’m looking forward to this on multiple levels.
It’s a big party. The entire 10 miles of Broad Street are lined all the way with people. It’s one of those events where everyone and everything in the city just stops for a morning and we all come together to have fun, and god knows we need that more than ever since a few weeks ago and the insane, unspeakable events that occurred in Boston.
There’s really not much to say that hasn’t already been said about Boston. It was unthinkable, horrific and I still can’t grasp the horror it really could have been to be there. I’m glad I can’t. It would make me more pissed off than I already am about it. The main reason I’m angry is because it adds a layer of doubt to these types of events that was not otherwise there. There are a lot of runners who can run these 10 miles with their eyes closed, but then there are those of us who really have to work at it. I run a lot. But I can’t just get up on a random Sunday morning in May and rock out double digit miles. It takes time to work myself up to it. A lot of time, pain, and sacrifice. Sacrifice on my part, and sacrifice on my wife’s part too. While I am out training, she is back home holding it all together and making sure we are set in real life as well. She does it because she loves me, and she knows how much I love this insane running lifestyle. The finish line of this race will represent the conclusion of approx 3 months of training, time away from my wife and daughter, and a shit ton of miles run in preparation. Crossing that finish line should be a happy time: One where I am proud of my accomplishments, in the completion of my goals of finishing the race, holding a solid pace, having a great time, finally checking this last goal off my list, and taking part in one of the truly “Philadelphia” events of the year. In short, this finish line is supposed to be a happy place. Nothing more. It will be, but now I have to at least stop and think twice before I ask my wife, (let alone my 2 year old daughter) who has sacrificed a lot just to allow me to be there, to come down and cheer me on because after Boston, you have to wonder. It forces that to be part of the conversation. And that pisses me off, quite frankly… But I had better digress before i keep going on about it all. (because immediately after I said there was nothing more to say about Boston, I just launched into a little tirade about it)
Back to Broad Street and a positive note: Additionally, I am running this race as a charity runner for the first time. I am proud to be part of the American Cancer Society (ACS) DetermiNation program. I have said this before, but I got into the charity as a means to ensure entry into this ultra popular race. It’s a massively sought after event in our area, and even with over 40,000 entries, it still managed to sell out in a matter of hours last year (and if my memory serves me correctly, generated enough Internet traffic to either crash the site or at the least cause some major access complications), prompting this year’s event organizers to institute a lottery system to select the entrants. Honestly speaking, I wanted into this race, so I started looking at ways to get a guaranteed spot. The only such way I could find was to team up with the charity partner of the race and agree to raise funds for donation. What started out as a means to get in to a run has turned into much more though. It was such a great experience planning the fundraising efforts. It gave my training a greater purpose. It makes me feel like with all the good that has come to me over the past year and a half, I now can say I’ve put a little of that back out there again. I know without a doubt I will do it again. Maybe for Broad Street again, maybe for another race, but def. doing it again. Maybe my little team of 3 for this year expands next year and we see what kind of noise we can really make in 2014. Team “Running My Ass Off” possibly?
But that is then, and this weekend is now. It’s go time and I couldn’t be happier. One or two more easy 3 mile runs this week to stay loose and I am officially done my training.
I have 2 goals for the race, time-wise. My super aggressive stretch goal is 90 min. (Not sure if I will be able to string together 10 consecutive 9 min miles though), my more realistic goal is to finish in 1:40. Those extra 10 min could be a lifesaver. Really since this is my first Broad Street, I just want to take it all in and have fun too. I know a lot I people running, so it will be a good chance to catch up with everybody as well. Really looking forward to running with Rock an Donna, the other two members of our ACS charity team. We dubbed ourselves “Team Pegasus” because back when it was time to register, we all were wearing Nike Pegasus running shoes. We should change it to “Team Hoka” now since 2 of the 3 of us will be rocking our awesomely massive Hoka One One running shoes down broad street. -Sorry Donna, but way to stay loyal to the Pegasus!
In keeping with tradition, I am posting a course map of the run, but like I said, it’s a straight line. So there’s not all the much to see.
I’ll be posting a recap and whatever pictures I can pull together next week, so stay tuned.
Until then, thanks for reading and take it easy.