On Saturday March 1st I ran the 2008 Buffalo Shamrock Run. About 3,000 people gathered at a beer tent in the frigid cold of Buffalo. On their way to the beer tent they ran or walked 8 kilometers.
John and I drove to the ever hospitable Mark’s the morning of the race.At Mark’s house John realized that he forgot his running sneakers! I’ve had that nightmare many times but so far the worst I’ve done is gotten to the gym and realize that I forgot my sneaks.The gym is only 1 mile away from my home so it’s not a problem. John seemed to take it pretty well. I’m not so sure I would have. He ran in his “kicking around” sneakers. Sadly John did not have a running-mom for this race. Shortly after Mark’s friend “Noodles” arrived we went to the race.
We headed over to the start line somewhat early.With 3000 runners and no starting corals we didn’t want to be dodging lots of slower runners. Along the way we ran into Mike and Julie and so we all lined up together.
With the traditional “See you in another life, Brotha” to John and a “Strength and Honor” from John we were off. Mark ran with me for the entire race to help me run as fast as I could. For the majority of the race he was about 10 yards ahead of me. The only exception was hills. I slow considerably going up hills and I run very fast downhill. On every hill I ended up passing him.He was able to catch up with little trouble.
With about 3/4 of a mile to go I shed my shirts.I’ve never finished a race with a shirt on and this race would be no different. I was running so hard that it really didn’t feel cold. The extra cheers from the crowd helped me run even faster.
The results show that I totally blew Mark’s time away. I finished in 37:17 and he finished in 37:18. So far Mark hasn’t beaten me in any race that we’ve run together. A pace of 7:30 is an incredible time for me and I owe a lot of that to Mark. I came in 20th out of 180 in my age group.
Noodles doesn’t have a runner’s build (whatever that means) and he didn’t have lots of fancy running clothes. He ran in a “thermo sandwich” (a shirt wedged between two thermo shirts), huge uncomfortable looking headphones, a balaclava, and a knit hat. The only typical running garb on him was his sneakers. He blew us all away and most of the runners for that matter. His average pace was around a 6:30! He came in 6th in our division (M 25-29).
John finished in 43:34 a very excellent time for running without your
sneakers! John also finished shirtless and has vowed to never finish
another race wearing a shirt.
After the race we enjoyed the beer tent and then a bar after that! As I said most of the 3,000 took the long route to get to the beer tent covering almost 5 miles before being rewarded with free beer.