Last weekend I participated in the Plano Balloon Festival 5k in Plano, TX. My goal for this race was to not race (huh??). I know that might sound odd, but sometimes it’s nice to take the pressure off and just enjoy your time out there. I decided my first race at the Plano Balloon Festival 5k would be determined by Gracie’s walking speed. I invited my friend Novia of the Texan Triathlete to join us on our Sunday stroll. We ran into another friend along the course, who joined us for the last 1.5 miles of the walk. It was so nice shooting the breeze with friends, sharing good laughs, and getting to chat with fellow walkers.
We met so many nice people along the course. There was an older gentleman wearing a shirt that said “WHY ARE YOU CHASING ME?” on the back. He was a retired marathoner due to age and stress-related injuries, but I loved that he was still out there giving it his best speed walk. They were groups of families and friends enjoying a walk or an alternating walk-jog. I saw a father with his young daughter jogging along at her speed. She was having a blast and had the biggest smile on her face. When I shouted “whoa – you’re fast!!” as they ran by, she turned around without missing a beat and said “thank you! I like going fast!” It was too cute, and really warmed my heart.
After I finished the 5k, I waited around to cheer for a friend finishing the half marathon. As I looked over at Gracie panting after our race, I didn’t feel the pull that I should have been out there on a longer course. I knew that I had made the right decision for us to tackle this race together at Gracie’s pace.
Goal: Let Gracie determine the pace, and enjoy a nice morning with friends
Location: Plano, TX
Conditions: Around 85° F with 80% humidity at race start
Total time: 57:36
Pace: 18:14 min/mile
Outcome: I had a lot of fun chatting with friends and getting a good walk in for Gracie.