Yesterday I hopped on Marta to the Midtown Station and then headed east to Piedmont Park for the Strong4Life Superhero Sprint 5K. Joining 1,077 others for the 5th annual race/event hosted by CHOA (Children's Healthcare of Atlanta) supporting Atlanta's Strong4Life Program, which is designed to help eliminate childhood obesity. A very good cause.
As I was walking past the Flying Biscuit on 10th Street, a woman, who looked like she was in need of directions said to me "do you know where Piedmont Park is". She was dressed in race day garb so I said "are you doing the race", she said "yes". So I said "me too, we'll find it together". Her name was Marie and as we made our way to the park she told me that this was her first race in about 30-40 years. Wow! Co-workers convinced her to get out there and do this. As we got closer, heard music in the distance and a feeling of comfort came over us as good, we're in the right place and almost there. The music got louder and before long we saw the starting line, the balloons, tents, and hundreds of people getting ready for the race. I wished her luck for this, her first 5K in 30-40 years and went off to find the race day registration line.
All signed up, four safety pins, race bib on, ready to go. It did not take long to notice there were a lot of people in capes and/or dressed up as superheroes. Man, I left my cape at home! I actually have one from a race I did a year or two ago. Oh well. But this all made sense, after all "Superhero" was part of the name of this race :)
Themed races. Fun, and kids really seemed to like it too.
9:00 AM rolled around and we were off. Headed out of the park, took a right on 10th as the race course was actually on the roads around Piedmont Park. The first mile kind of sucked as it was all uphill, not really steep, but none the less, uphill. I hate hills when doing these races! I only like the downhill parts.
As we headed north on Piedmont couldn't help but hear some kids from a balcony in one of the buildings we passed.
"Hey Superman, you suck!"
"Hey Flash, is that all you got? Come on, you can go faster than that!"
Kids... However, it's probably something I would have done as kid.
Just after mile one, downhill! Yay! So although this blog is about "Walking" I have been doing a bit more running, especially in shorter races, more specifically on the downhill parts. It sort of feels like I'm cheating on my blog! Anyway, my left knee is holding up, it feels pretty good, no pain. Not sure how much running I'll do moving forward. Time will tell.
Finished the race with a time of 37:14. Once again, for me, pretty happy with that time. In my head, my goal more or less has been to finish under 40 minutes. So this is good.
It was really hot during the race so they were handing out ice cold bottles of water. It was really good! Refreshing! Made my way over to the post race goodies tables and immediately zeroed in on the watermelon. That was even better than the water. Looking around the spread noticed bananas, apples, oranges, grapes, blueberries, watermelon, and carrot sticks. Typically post race spreads include all kinds of not-so-healthy choices, of course justified by just burning off a bunch of calories. But then I remembered the theme of this race - eliminating childhood obesity. So it made sense and I am glad they did not include all of those high sugar, high fat, high calorie choices. It was the right thing to do.
The race was over for me, although they still had the Fun Run for the kids coming up, the race awards, and the best costume contest, decided to head back to the Midtown Marta Station.
Crossing over Peachtree Street came across a fun sight, the Margaret Mitchell House. She referred to it as "The Dump". Of course this is where she wrote Gone With the Wind from the bottom floor.
|Margaret Mitchell House|
Back home, showered, checked results for official time only to discover that I placed 3rd in the male 60-64 category. Darn, I should have stayed for the race awards!