Flash and Jan at the July 4th 2018 Firecracker 5k

Jan Baby (the wife), Roxanne (the girlfriend) and I started our Fourth of July festivities on a scenic, flat and fast course in Fort Collin’s City Park. All ages and abilities were there and we took up our place at the very end of the start line; not the best way to start our July 4th celebration as we had to weave our way through half of the 1400 other contestants! I kept wondering how much extra mileage I was adding – how long would that curvy string I was running for a route straighten out to?! I think we would have been better off starting near the front and going out fast until some room opened up, then slow down to your sixties age group abilities. I was thinking about this as we first surveyed the start but the row of eight strollers put me off. I imagined they would fan out across the road, shoulder to shoulder and create the great wall of childhood. That scenario came into being at the back of the pack, so ARGH!

Jannie was going great guns and I was working hard to keep up with her. I was not on my game for this run, even though I thought I had done everything right throughout my training. I had to employ all my cunning cheats to gain any advantage. One of my favorites, cutting the corners with verve was proving to be quite effective 🙂  I know when things aren’t going great when I recognize that I’m not telling odd jokes to complete strangers during the run. I did blurt out to one woman; “I WANT YOUR SOCKS”. She yelled back at me; “You can have them if you’ll stop yelling at me!”. She had the coolest American flag decorated compression socks. Sadly at the end of the race, with 1400 people milling about plus all their support crews, I never spotted her to take her up on the offer.

We both finished in the middle of our “age group” pack. Actually, we were each one person towards the front of that pack. It’s not like us to settle for average. Jan finished in ninth place in the Women’s 60-64 age group with a time of 32:39. That put here in 812th place overall. Pretty impressive considering the sheer number of healthy young adults that were participating. I managed ninth place too, but in the Men’s 65-69 age group. Team Alexander finishes 9th. My time was just a tad faster at 30:59 and I had to go all out at the finish to make sure that old guy in front of me didn’t steal my thunder. Overall, that put me in 705th place. Funny thing after the race, that old guy sought me out to tell me how hard he worked to hold me off. He actually thought he beat me across the finish line. Doug, if your reading this, you finished in 32:09! See how delerious running can make you?

Snooze Eatery
Horse and Dragon Brewery

Next up is the Fort Collins Human Race, a 10K no less, taking place Saturday July 28th. We’re really starting to challenge ourselves. The Human Race is regarded at the best 10K in the Mountain West region. The event is hosted by Green Events and after having run about three of their events this year, I have to tell you what a great job they do. Each of the Green Events has featured chip timing and free donuts and coffee at the finish. They have a lot more vendors than the donuts and coffee people, but none of that other stuff appeals to me – unless the event has free beer! The Human Race is sponsored by Snooze (my favorite breakfast spot in town), Horse and Dragon Brewing Company ( I can vouch for great beer). There are other sponsors, but none that are more meaningful IMHO.