The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

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February 12, 2013

Freezing is more fun as a team

Forming a team with co-workers for the 4-mile B-rrry Scurry race made the experience more fun and took me back to my cross country days. There is something so great about being part of a team, no matter how big or small.

While I enjoy running alone as my escape from the hectic day, sometimes I really miss running with a team. I spent two years in high school and three years in college on a cross country team and loved every minute of it.

I have played many different sports and been on many different teams, but cross country was my favorite by far and running remains one of my favorite things to do. Now-a-days I do most of my running alone, which I don't mind, but it is fun to have people to do races with.

I often take on races with my dad or sister who are both runners and occasionally reconnect with past teammates and friends. Unfortunately all of these people live in Minnesota or Wisconsin, so they are not about to drive hours just to do a 5K with me or vice versa.

Since the Clinton Herald staff recently had a Blue Zones Challenge team, I suggested that we form a team to take on the annual February race. In the end there were only five us up to the challenge, but what we lacked in numbers we made up for in endurance and motivation. While we all went at different paces, most of us met at the end to celebrate.

It was a decent race for me, not my best nor my worst. I was first in my age group, up from being second last year, yet my time was a few seconds slower. I think I started out a little too ambitious trying to beat my time from last year and slowed down a bit after the halfway point. Luckily the course is down and back and some of my Herald teammates cheered me on as I started to feel tired. I can't complain much, since I was the fifth woman to finish out of nearly 300 women (which definitely surprised me.)

As I waited to get my medal at the end of the race, my team waited with me as every age group recieved awards starting with 80 and over. After the long wait, they cheered as I went up to get my award. It felt great to have teammates supporting me. I am proud of the group. Taking on your first race or returning after a long haitus can be intimidating and they all did great.

Afterwards we rewarded ourselves with a delicious healthy lunch and baked treats and reflected on our B-rrry adventure.

For those who missed out or weren't up to the challenge, there is always next year.

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