Pre Race: It’s been six weeks since Lilac and I had a race. It was starting to feel like forever, especially since we were going to races every other weekend over the summer. This also starts a four week span of a race every weekend, and some of them are big ones, so I was starting to get a little anxious for the fun to start.
The Moon Valley Grasshopper Bridge 5K raises funds for the Phoenix Children’s Hospital, and since PCH saved Lilac’s sister’s life from a 5% chance of survival many years ago, it was something that her family wanted to participate in. Lilac’s sister, “Vibrant”, and her mom, “Larue”, decided to come. Now Lilac’s family is chock full of gorgeous women. At a svelte and willowy 5’11 – 6’0, the girls would be totally comfortable on the runway. And Larue displays how nicely they will mature. I’m grasshopper green with envy over her 50 year old legs. However, since I’ve been a part of their clan for 10 years or so, I’m over my jealousy of their amazing metabolisms and bone structures (mostly). :)
I had fished at Lilac a couple of times to see what the expectations were with the ladies running with us – were we running straight through? Run/walking? Walking? She didn’t seem nearly as concerned about it as I was. I was waffling between being terrified of those long legs taking off and leaving me in the dust, and annoyed that my “prep” race for Run for Congo would become a nice leisurely walk, and I wouldn’t be mentally ready for that first 10K.
Race: The race takes place inside the Coral Gables neighborhood, which is built up against the mountain that creates Moon Valley (Moon Mountain?). It’s relatively flat however, and has many, many, many turns. We set off at a trot (immediately after a picture at the starting line – Larue cracks me up) and Vibrant quickly established that we’d be running landmarks. As a former track star, she said she couldn’t run if she couldn’t see the end of where she was going. Worked for me! So we started the “we’ll run to that corner”, “Ok we’ll start running at that white car, no that’s too far, at the blue trash can, and then we’ll stop at that yellow sign”. We just went with it. They were shorter intervals – maybe 3/2’s, but it was good to be moving.
During our walk segments we talked about how much nicer it was outside (it was almost cool) and how great it was to be supporting Children’s Hospital. Vibrant decided that when we do this next year (wow, we should probably finish this race before we start about next year) she wants to make t-shirts for us that say “Miracle Girl” to commemorate the day she made the front page over Barry Goldwater. Interacting with the girls reminded me that although my relationship with my mom has gotten much better, we still just don’t have that unbelievable connection that Larue has created with her daughters. I could not even innumerate the great Frederick’s panties, and “girl discussions” that we had openly and willingly that would NEVER have been discussed with my mom. It was great to be included and open and girly with the girls. Sometimes I need that more than I need a PR.
About halfway into the race, Larue’s hip started to tighten up, so we cut out the running. That was fine with me – I was having such a great time with the ladies that I didn’t want the race to end. We went over the grasshopper bridge (another picture opportunity) and when we saw the finish line, we ran in as foursome screaming and cheering like we had run the whole thing!
Post Race: 54 something, no idea where I placed and I don’t plan on looking it up. Today was about enjoying a good time with a great family, and supporting a cause that means a lot to them. I can worry about PR’s and placement next week!