Today was race number 3 of the Austin Distance Challenge, the 10 mile Run for the Water. Proceeds from the run go to The Gazelle Foundation, which funds projects for clean drinking water in Burundi Africa. Gilbert's (founder of The Gazelle Foundation) story is pretty amazing.
I didn't have any real goals or expectations for this race since Coach Tracy says I should still be recovering from Longhorn and since I knew I would be up really late watching my Iron friends on Saturday night.
I got up after less than 5 hours of sleep and got to the race site just 15 minutes before the start, I like to get to races early so that is by far the latest I have ever gotten to a race. Immediately I found the Tri Zones tent and Elizabeth. I had read somewhere that she planned to take the run pretty easy since it would be her longest run ever, and at the time I thought maybe I'd try to run with her. I suggested this to her and she seemed happy to have someone to run with.
I headed over to the porto-potty line and it was long! I was still in line when they sang the national anthem! That has never happened to me before. By the time I was heading to the race start I figured I had lost my chance to run with Elizabeth, but she was waiting for me! Cool! We walked to the back of the crowd and less than a minute later we started. I hadn't looked at a course map at all but I had heard most of the run was west of MoPac so I expected hills- and there were hills! Lots of them!
This was my first time to run with Elizabeth but it worked out perfectly. I love to talk while I run but sometimes I just can't do it and at times today was one of those days. It was super humid- the air actually seemed almost liquid! and my allergies have been bad for a couple of weeks so I expected some asthma issues and my breathing was definitely not great today. But Elizabeth likes to talk while she runs too so I got to hear lots of stories about the South Tri Zones team training (I belong to the North team) and about her family. We had a great time and we went slow enough that my not so great breathing wasn't a big problem.
Even though there were lots of hills and we weren't running very fast and my breathing wasn't great the run went by really fast. I think I owe that completely to Elizabeth! I think our finish time was about 2:08. At the finish Gilbert high fived or shook hands with all the finishers- very cool!