Yesterday was the 33rd annual Davis Stampede put on by A Change of Pace! It was also the third time I’ve run the race. This race will always be special to me as it was the first race I ever ran with Runnin’ for Rhett!
What’s really cool about this race, is it really helps me to see the progress I’ve made since I started running. When I first ran it three years ago, I ran it in 1:29, and yesterday I ran it in 1:16. That’s a 2 minute per mile difference — something I’m very proud of. I also remember the half marathoners passing me early on during the 2013 race, but this time, the leader didn’t pass me until the last quarter mile, which I loved. (It’s impressive to know they have run an additional 7 miles!) Next time, I’m going to try to finish before them!
Prior to the race we celebrated Rhett’s 18th birthday. This year, as an official pace group leader, I got to hold and release one of the 18 balloons. What a wonderful experience. Even though I never knew Rhett, his story is an inspiration to me, and it’s something that I use when the running gets hard. He couldn’t do it, but I can, and I will.
The race itself was great. The volunteers are always very kind and dedicated, and I absolutely love the course — especially when it runs by the apartment I had as a sophomore at Davis (my group is probably tired of that story… =P). I had a great time with my pace group — Paula, Gunther, Cynthia, Katie, and Julie. We all stuck to our 2 min walk : 2 min run interval perfectly, until we emptied the tank in the last half mile! The rain was pretty intense, but we all faired well and were good sports. And, as usual, I loved spending time with my R4R friends under our tent afterward! 10Ks are probably my favorite distance to race — you can really settle in but you aren’t out there forever!
Eric had a great race too – he averaged an 8:14/mile pace, and continues to become a faster and better runner! Not bad for having hung out at Panera during my 2013 race. =D