Tuesday, September 2, 2014

2014 Mercer County Run for the Pets 15K

This past Saturday, I ran the Mercer County Run for the Pets 15K for the 2nd year in a row. I truly love this race. It's one of the only local races that offers the 15K distance which is a good challenging distance, yet not as strenuous as a half marathon. 10K is still my favorite distance to race. 5K is too short and 15K still leaves me with a running hangover. But I like the challenge. I'm like a running Goldilocks.
Dressed in my Mississippi State game day race outfit

A couple of friends were going to ride with me, so I got up early, got the car cleaned out somewhat and waited for them to arrive. One of them got confused about what street I lived on and ended up in Lawrenceburg, which is about 7 miles down the road. So, we were running late....which I hate. I had grabbed something to eat about 30 minutes before the race, but with all the rushing around, I forgot. We got to the beautiful town of Burgin about 10 minutes before race time. It's a small race, so we had no problem registering and getting to the start line in plenty of time. My friends were both doing the 5K and I was one of only maybe 50 doing the 15K. I knew there might be a good chance that I would come in dead last...it's never happened, but I relegated myself to the possibility.

The weather was beautiful and we got started just a few minutes past 8 AM. Now, if Run the Bluegrass is one of America's prettiest half marathons, I would like to nominate this race for one of the prettiest 15Ks. I love country runs. I love running past livestock farms. There was a fiesty little Angus bull about half a mile in that desperately wanted to break through his fence and make this race a running of the bull(s). I already had my escape route planned. 

Pics don't do it justice,
The course is quite hilly. It's one of the hilliest races I run. I like hills and I hate hills....it just depends on the day. I liked them ok this time. There are some really good downhills to give you some relief.

I have to say that once again, the runners were incredibly supportive. It was a modified out and back, so  there was lots of meeting up with other runners headed the other way. Tons of high five and "way to go's" were exchanged. It's the best race I've ever done in that aspect.

I had 8 miles on the training calendar for this weekend so my plan was to train for 8 miles and then do what I could for the last 1.3 miles, but not worry about it. I like to maintain less than 13 minute miles when I do my runs longer than 5 miles. I was slightly below that when I got to mile 8 (I walked a lot after 10K), so I was good. I pretty much walked the last 1.3 miles. I came out too fast clocking one of my fastest 5K times in the past year. Then the hills got to me. Over all, I was happy with my time of 2:03ish. I wasn't last, but almost...not that I would've cared. I don't care about being slow...I don't compete with anyone other than myself. I'm happy my body allowed me to go 9.3 miles without breakfast.

My beautiful running friends. Katie H(center) won 3rd in her age group in the 5K

As some of you may know, we plan to move to Tennessee next summer before Joseph starts kindergarten. I already plan to come back yearly for Run the Bluegrass, Derby mini, Great Buffalo Chase, and the Iron Horse. I plan to add this race to my list. Seriously, if you are local and not running this one, you're missing out.  $20? A beautiful 15K course? Gels on the course (although I wish the super nice volunteer had not opened mine for me...I really wanted to wait until mile 5 to take it)? Plenty of water stops and a decent amount of post race grub? A super soft well designed shirt? A great cause? What's not to love? The only thing I would have pushed it over the top completely would have been gatorade (or the like) on the course (or at the finish). I was out of GU brew tablets and got a bad dehydration headache afterward....but that might have been that post race margarita......I'm not saying.


  1. From the Race Directors - THANK YOU for your kind words!! This was our 7th years and we have been able to raise in the neighborhood of $15,000 for the Mercer County Spay/Neuter Clinic which is just a joy for us. This is not possible without the loyal support that we have received; so again thank you. We will talk to our "gel opener :-) & will have the Gatorade back out next year! Awesome that you will add us to your "return to Kentucky races!!" Bill & Chris

  2. You are totally rocking your runs! Are you still planning a marathon?

    1. Yes, I'm still planning on doing my marathon next May. Still a possibility that I'll downgrade to the half but we will see! Thanks!!