The Loop the Lake Marathon has a special place in my heart for several reasons. It’s …
- Put on by one of the best local running shops in the area The Balanced Athlete.
- A scenic course around Lake Washington and includes some of my favorite local training runs.
- During a week when I usually have some extra time to do a race between Christmas and New Years.
- It’s free!
But the most important reason this race is special to me is that last year in the middle of the race I received a phone call from my wife that she was going into labor. Less than 24 hours later Abigail JoAnne Hong joined our family! It was a day I’ll always remember and I decided to run it again this year so I could reflect on the last year of having sweet Abby Jo in our lives. Plus I needed to burn off some Holiday treats and log a long training run.
Two things didn’t go according to plan for the race.
First, the weather forecast was full of rain so I had packed up some rain gear for the race. However we didn’t end up having any rain and it was a wonderful day to run – cool and overcast.
Second I had planned on running an eight minute per mile pace. I told Carrie I would take it easy – this wasn’t a race where I was trying to do anything more than enjoy the day and get some decent long slow training miles in. This plan lasted about thirty seconds into the race when I found a pack of runners that I was enjoying running with near the front of the pack. I ran harder than planned but it was a great day. I don’t typically chat with folks too much on a run but I actually met a guy named Sean that is also a member of Seattle Running Club that I ran with for the last 20 miles and had fun talking about life with. It made the miles slip by almost effortlessly. Until about mile 20 when we both got a bit quiet and started to feel the effects of running at 7:30 pace for three hours. We did catch up to the third place runner and carried him with us for the last ten miles.
The three of us crossed the finish line within five seconds of each other at 3:15. Sean took third, I was in fourth and the other guy was fifth. Not bad for not doing a proper build up or taper for the race. Members of the 2015 SRC Brooks team took 1st and 4th. Congrats to teammate Arthur Martineau for his win and PR at 3:07. The race did reveal that I probably have a bit of work to do to get back to peak condition for Boston in April.
Shoes: Ran these in my vintage Brooks Trance 12s
What’s Next? SRC sponsored Bridle Trails Winter Running Festival in January. It should be a great event. Come run it with me!