I started off the holiday weekend by sleeping in on Friday July 3rd and having a lazy day at home. On Saturday, July 4th, Independence Day, I was up early and heading to the Nocatee Community in Ponte Vedra Beach for the Independence Day 4 Miler which was promoted by my friends at Jacksonville Running Company.
I had been hoping to do well at this event because the age group winners were to receive a free pair of shoes. I grabbed a choice parking spot and got out of the car to walk around, stretch a bit and warm up. Always observant, it was during this time that I concluded a little decor goes a long way on Independence Day. Yes, sometimes less is more.
Before long it was time for everyone to be herded to the start line. I wanted to be close enough to the front to avoid being bogged down but not so close that I would be swept away at a pace much to fast. Soon the gun sounded and we were off.
I fell into a comfortable pace and covered the first mile in 8:15. Mile 2 was about 8:30 and miles 3 & 4 were about 9:00. I went to the results table and told the young man my age group and number and he said I was first. I told a few friends I had won my age group and planned to wait for the awards ceremony. Free running shoes is very cool. The official results indicate my time to be 35:02:09 and Garmin says my pace was 8:42/mile.
As the awards were being handed out, there was a long pause and a little meeting of the officials around the awards table after the men 55 to 59 age group. I knew this was not a good sign.
The next announcement was for the men 60 and up age group. Turns out there was a speedy 67 year old man in the next age group that actually ran quite a bit faster than me. I was 2nd in the 60 and up age group and ended up with a pair of Shock Doctor Compression Socks. At this point I felt bad because I had told several people that I had won the age group. Still, considering how much running I've been doing I was pleased with my time and ended up with a new pair of compression socks at the right price.
This morning I was at Jacksonville Running Company by 6:30 for the usual Sunday morning group run. It was a small group, likely because of the holiday weekend and fireworks late last evening. I ended up going 7.45 miles as indicated by the Garmin Details page and was soaking wet by the time I finished.
After the run I went out to the Lululemon store at the local mall for a free yoga class at 9:30 as recommended by my massage therapist during the week. All of their clothing racks are on wheels. They just slide all the racks out of the way and turn the entire store into a large yoga studio. The store was totally packed by the time yoga started and massage therapist Bruce was in the front row with wife and daughter.
Next Sunday I have the Xterra Harbison Trail Half Marathon in Columbia, SC. I was hoping for cooler weather but it looks to be quite similar to what we have been experiencing here. So until then.........