The Holly Run is quickly becoming one of my favorite races to put on the calendar. The Life is Good No Matter What Foundation is doing some truly wonderful things throughout Ohio (really, you should go check it out) for adults with advanced cancer. If you’re going to run races, I think voting with your feet for a wonderful charity reigns supreme.
This year’s version couldn’t have asked for a better day. It was a cool, crisp, Fall morning with just a hint of a breeze which is almost unheard of for mid November. My partner and crime and pasty legs, Lydia, and I got to the race about 45 minutes before race time, found a parking spot with only two or ten turnarounds, picked up our packets, pottied, and warmed up. The start area just felt excited, hopeful, and…happy. Rarely do I find myself feeling emotional at the start of a race, but this one gets me everytime. Listening to the names of all 36 recipients of “escapes” made it real. We were running for each and every one of these individuals. And for Holly. In my mind, I was able to mentally erase any doubts I had about how my run would go. Screw that I hadn’t run in a week because of stomach flu. I was one of 800 people running to celebrate life like there was no tomorrow. Screw cancer.
The race started and we were off. I found myself feeling super light on my feet, possible because of aforementioned stomach flu, but maybe also because I was relaxed and determined. 99% sure though that it was stomach flu, though. The first mile always clocks in a decent time, even with the giant hill in the cemetery. I pressed on, trying to keep my pace honest and even. I pushed up into 3rd OA for the ladies and that’s where I’d stay. I had someone nice push me into the finish from about a half mile out. We fist bumped (yes, mid race fist bumped) and it was on to the finish. I think I stayed sub 6 pace towards the end (go, Eli, go!).
Final Finish: 21:08 (6:48/mile)
3rd OA Female
I definitely am putting The Holly Run on my 2016 calendar already. It’s a wonderful event that continues to grow in size each year, is super runner friendly, and a truly “community” gathering that brings an entire town together to celebrate what’s great…life!