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Keeping Pace: What goes through the mind of a runner?

Tanner Cook • Mar 17, 2018 at 11:27 PM

For being a runner, I sure do have a short attention span.

There are a lot of thoughts that go through a runner’s head while out for the daily exercise. I thought I might keep track of my own one day recently and this is what I came up with.

The start of the run: Crap, not again. I knew I shouldn’t have left the house before the coffee left me. Everything hurts. Look, a squirrel! What is the absolute minimum I will allow myself to do? That dog is so cute and I hope it comes up to me. One mile down and too many more to go.

Near the middle of the run: Where’s the nearest place I can use the bathroom? I must have the world’s smallest bladder. At least everything stopped hurting after the first 20 meters. Look, another squirrel! I wonder if all the squirrels are related. That sure is a nice house. Be quiet, you little yappy dog. I’m trying to concentrate on being relaxed and your nonstop barking is throwing me off. I wonder what I’m going to have for lunch. There’s a distinct possibility that it might be pizza again.

The end of the run: Well, I’m finally done. It only took three minutes and 46 seconds longer than anticipated. The pace was off a bit. That hill killed me at the seventh mile. Look, there’s that fat squirrel from the other day. He’s got more nuts?! How can he eat that much? I wish I could hibernate for months and then come out looking the way I do now. I have to get back in shape. When do we get to go again? I’m hungry.

RECENT RACE REVIEW

I recently ran in the 21st Myrtle Beach Half Marathon in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. The race was very well organized, had a great expo the day before and had an even better post-race party for the participants.

There was a marathon event, half marathon, marathon relay and 5K run that made up the weekend event on the beach. Everything was on the flat stretches with gorgeous ocean views along the course. However, the wind was the ultimate enemy.

During the three days, there were several high wind advisories off the shoreline that produced gusts upward of 30 miles per hour. Along the course, the latter half of the race along Ocean Boulevard was basically a wind tunnel. There were times when the gusts were so strong that I almost stopped in my tracks.

Thankfully, the wind did not affect me that much and I was able to pull off a surprising win in a race with over 2,000 people in 1:13:05 in the half marathon.

I would highly recommend the race to anyone that is looking for a Boston Qualifier marathon as it is quite flat and has plenty of pace groups. The volunteers for the race are also quite personable.

UPCOMING LOCAL RACES

• The Joggin’ for the Noggin’ 5K is one of my personal favorites with all of the funds going to a great cause to help out the Crumley House in Limestone. The Crumley House is a rehabilitation center for people that have fallen victim to traumatic brain injuries. There will also be a wide variety of breakfast foods after the race. The event is on March 24 and will begin from the Crumley House at 10 a.m.

- The Bunny Hop 5K will be in celebration of Easter and will take place on March 31 in downtown Johnson City beginning at Founders Park. The course will be fairly flat. The 5K begins at 8:30 a.m. and will have an Easter egg hunt afterward beginning at 10:30 a.m.

For more local road racing information, visit www.runtricities.org or www.werunevents.com for all of your needs on location, start times and course ratings.

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