Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Kerri Gallagher's Army 10 Miler Race Recap

Courtesy of Kerri Gallagher, 
here's what it's like to win the world's largest 10 miler.

Going into the race I was hoping to start at or around 5:45 mile pace and work my way down, if possible, otherwise maintain that pace.  The race starts and the first mile is about trying to find a good pack and pace to settle into. I hit the first mile in 5:40. Not too far off.   After the first mile I find Erin Koch, my Pacers New Balance team mate and we make our way through the crowd, keeping our eyes open for the women ahead of us. We came through Mile 2 in 5:35.    

Miles 3 and 4 go by, the pace quickening.  We've passed the 5th and 6th women.  One of these miles is just under 5:30. Passing the 4 mile mark I see the lead pack of three women.  I work my way up to them and pass them before the 5 mile mark.  I’m in the lead, but know the others are close behind.  

Mile 6 rolls by and my pace is slowing a bit.  I knew I’d pay for that 5:30 mile, but hope to keep within the 5:40 range.  The second place woman passes me at mile 7. I respond and retake the lead shortly after.  Miles 8 and 9 pass relatively event free. In the final mile, someone runs up by my side to let me know I have barely 10 meters on second place.  I hit the 9 mile mark and try to start moving knowing this is my last shot.  As we approach the last 300 meters or so something tells me I need to go! 

I opened up and finished maybe a stride ahead of second. 

It was an exciting finish and overall a great race, but the real story that day was the wounded warriors.  To run with them and see how much they’ve overcome to be out there that day is truly an inspiration. Through all they’ve sacrificed they continue to give back in ways they may not even realize.  God bless our troops!

By Kerri Gallagher

Photo's courtesy of Andrew Rader - See more here.
Results - Here.

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