Omaha Heart Walk

It not often that I get two major fitness events in the same weekend.  It couldn’t have been better!

Saturday was the 2010 Omaha Heart Walk that raised money for the American Heart Association.  I have never done a charity event like this before so it was kind of a new adventure.  Our team raise over $1100 and had 8 walkers join us on the 4 mile trek from the Con Agra campus, through and around the Gallup campus and finish by looping back around the Qwest Center in downtown Omaha.  There were a ton of walkers so the sidewalks were full and the walking was slow.

Before the event, they had a couple bounce houses for the kids, an outdoor rock climbing wall, a big area for large corporate photos and all kinds of booths.  There was plenty to do and the weather was perfect for us.  We finished the walk in just over an hour without killing ourselves.  Definitely a fun event for those who like to walk.  I’ll do it again next year for sure!

After words, I took the family to Jimmy John’s for lunch.  As always, they were freekishly fast and we had a great time together.  The kids enjoyed the walk too!

Papillion Half Marathon

This years annual installment of the Papillion Half Marathon / 10K was great.  Between the Lincoln Marathon 2 weeks ago, the Bellevue Runway Run last weekend and the Papillion Half, we have some great racing in eastern Nebraska!

This year, they had a pasta feed on Saturday night out at Midlands Hospital and you could pick up packets early.  The food was great and there was plenty of it.  Bulk delivery of that kind of food is really hard to pull off, but they seemed to make it work well in the facility they had.  Extra tickets for dinner were just $5 if you weren’t running.  It was a very nice touch.  Hope they can do it again next year.

This years shirt was outstanding as well.  The color is a little bright (see yellow in the picture?) but it was a real improvement over the gigantic detail that rendered last years shirts unusable.  They are made from that quick dry material and look and feel quite comfortable. Whole Foods gave a nice reusable shopping bag to carry everything out.

The race itself was well run and organized.  The race began and ended at the Papillion LaVista South stadium (it’s no Memorial Stadium!) and there were things for kids to do while you waited for the runners to make it back to the finish.  There were plenty of refreshments available for runners at the finish line and there were ample water stations along the way.  Besides this being a very hilly course, there really wasn’t much to complain about.  Folks along the course were very friendly.  This could really turn into a premier event in the next 10 years.

I set out the day to score a PR, and that is what I did.  I finished the 13.1 miles in [1:47:10] (unofficial) and felt like I really pushed it.  The goal was sub [1:50].  Thanks to my new friend Ryan, who paced me along the course to make sure my splits were happening. I did fall off the pace at mile 11.  He finished around [1:45].  Next year we will get him a pacing flag!

It’s been a grueling 8 weeks of training.  Starting with the State Farm 10 mile at the end of March, two 18 and one 20 mile training runs, the Eagle 10K, the Lincoln Marathon, the Bellevue Runway 7 mile and the Papillion Half, I am ready for some rest.  I am going to do some easy runs over the next couple weeks, including the Boystown 5 mile race on May 31st.  Sarah, Tim and Sammie are going to join me there and it should be some good family fun.  I’m sure there are still slots open for that race if you are interested in joinin us.  I have included the link about.  The cost is very reasonable.

Now for a little running break.  Thanks for surviving along with me over the last couple of months.  I am always surprised when people tell me they actually read these posts.  I really just write them for me, but am glad when others enjoy them.  It’s even better when I hear stories of how people have used running to improve their health.  Do you have a story to tell?  Don’t keep it a secret.  Tell it in the comments here or start your own blog, even if it’s only for you.

Best in your journey.  And remember, I search (and blog about running) so you will be inspired to do the same!