« Health & Fitness

Kalamazoo K5K

by Michael Louden

Memorial Day weekend was certainly a busy for running as I took part in two races, one on Saturday and another on Monday. The first one on Saturday was the K5K held at Spring Valley Park. This course is closed course, so runners don't have to worry about vehicles getting in their way while running.

The race director, Jim Mishler, puts on a great race everything is set up where it should be and is run efficiently. I arrived and saw a few of my running friends and we chatted before the race. It was a perfect morning as temperatures were in the 50s and it was sunny. I chatted with Brandon who told me he was only going to run about 75% for the race as he was recovering from an injury.

We started at 9 am and headed out down the trail and I tried to stick with Chris, but it wasn't working out and had to back off a little bit. However I kept him close to my sight knowing if I did this I might break 20 minutes again. We wound our way through the woods and then ran across the bridge and hit the one mile mark. All of a sudden I heard some people say 'Good job Brandon.' and this peaked my interest as he said I wouldn't have to worry about him. This psyched me out and was wondering if and when Brandon would pass me.

I then began my second loop around the course as this loop was the same as the first. This time though we passed the bridge and began the big loop around the lake. Brandon was still there with me as one runner asked him about his knee as he passed us both. I started to feel my energy being depleted and my pace started to slow down. Once I got around the big loop, I headed into the woods and lost all sight of Chris, but my thought still was where is Brandon.

This never came into play as I had beat Brandon to the finish and he had slowed his pace as well. I crossed in 10th place, 1st in my age group with a time of 20:19. It was a little off my goal pace, but I continue to work my way down to the 20 minute mark.

One more note, the post race food spread was one of the best I have ever seen. They had yogurt, strawberries, pineapple, blueberries, granola, Gatorade, chocolate milk, and water. It was catered my EMA Enterprises. Now on to the Climax 7K which took place on Memorial Day.