On Sunday Shannon, Noah, and I headed down to Manchester for the Shamrock Shuffle. This is the 2nd race in the Millennium Running Series. Noah had the first race of the day with the kids under 4 50yd dash. There were so many children signed up that it was split into two heats, one for girls and one for boys. It is great to see parents getting their children involved in races like this and combined among all three age groups for the kids races there had to have been over 200 little ones sprinting down Elm St. Next up was the 2 miler for Shannon and myself, along with 2,400 others. We both had goals for setting fast minute per mile paces and pushing ourselves. I positioned myself right near the front in order to avoid as much cluster as possible. This many people on such a short course can get sketchy at times. Once the gun went off and a few zigs and zags I was clear and running a little too fast. Do a little speed check and work on a steady pace became the only thoughts in my head…….well besides the “Wow, this hurts” after about the 1.5 mile mark. Since the course went 1 mile straight down Elm and then U-turn a mile straight back I was able to see the amazing performance put on by the winner. The gap he had on the group behind him at the 1 mile mark was just jaw dropping. To win a race this short by 1:30 is even more humbling. Come to find out he is an Olympic hopeful and elite level runner. I heard my name called lots from all the friends further back in the pack and it helped me push hard. I was expecting 13 minutes, but as I got within sight of the finish line and could see 12 minutes on the clock I knew I was going to crush that goal. The big motivator to go even faster was the huge cheers coming from the crown. I knew it was not for me, but someone behind me. I look over my shoulder and see this really tiny kid sprinting up behind me. No way am I getting passed, so I open it up. Turns out he was an 8 year old boy and he placed in the top 40 overall….now that is awesome. I ended up 33rd overall. Shannon had a great race and beat her target time by a good margin too. I am pround to see her push herself and enjoy all the races she does. We watched most of the parade with Noah, Kathy, Morgan, and Tanner and then headed for a much needed hot coffee. Noah fell asleep in the car so the 20 minute ride turned into a 1 hour scenic drive so that he could get a decent nap in.
Thanks for reading.