Make July 4th your day to celebrate freedom from the couch, liberation from your domestic confines, and independence from a sedentary lifestyle! Each year, we celebrate our nation’s birth by getting outside and staying active. This year was no exception. Tuesday, at the Apple Valley Freedom Days, Jason and I ran the 5 and 2-mile respectively. It was an M80-level blast! My focus, as of late, has been geared toward speed which made the 2-mile an appealing choice. Also, the summer heat was definitely in full swing, and with it came a sweltering race. I was glad for the slight breeze and being well hydrated.
5:30 am: Neighbor’s late-night fireworks made short work of our evening sleep. Time to get ready; strong coffee today!
7 am: Jason and I leave Shakopee in pursuit of celebrating our freedom.
7:30 am: Arrive at our destination, register, and embark upon a warm up.
7:55 am: We meet at the start, wish each other luck, and find our place among the sea of red, white and blue.
8 am: Race Starts
Mile 1 (8:51 pace) – I try to keep this first mile strategically slow, as the plan is to negative split the second. There is a slight gradual hill. Usually undeterred, the beating sun and little shade made for a tough ascent. With the mile marker in sight, realizing I get to turn around soon, my energy is renewed.
Mile 2 (8:45 pace) – The turnaround point seemed to run away from me, but I made it and I’m heading toward the finish. Not long after, with the end in sight, and fuel reserves on low, I’m having difficulty kicking it into the finish. I hit a slight negative split, clocking a 17:34 official time.
8:29 am: I see Jason sprinting to finish his 5-mile race! For once, I get to be the one to take his photo! Love it!
You can’t always predict the race day outcome, too many variables, but be proud of yourself for getting out the door and giving it your all! You got off the couch, put down the phone, ignored Facebook, and made a healthy lifestyle choice. Today, my best landed me with 5th in my age group, 28th woman overall! Since beginning my new speed program 2.5 weeks ago, my 2-mile time improved by over 1 minute and 20 seconds! For the 4th, Jason received 4th overall, 4th in his age group, and 4th place in his gender! It must’ve been his lucky number! He finished with a time of 30:07. We both enjoyed the experience and are proud of our performances.
E pluribus unum – Out of many, one (Official motto of the United States of America)
Editor: Jason Quarford