The Shamrock 4-Miler has long been a favorite of mine. It starts at a little church on Indy's Monument Circle, and winds around the downtown area before finishing back on the Circle. It's flat, and there's a lot to see. Folks dress up in wild costumes to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. It seems silly to drive a 150-mile round trip to run only four miles, especially when one is not "racing." However, this race is about more than a run. It's become a tradition for me to enjoy the Shamrock 4-Miler with friends and family.
Wendy and I have a fun tradition of always matching our clothes when running races. This time, Amelia joined us, so we decided to be triplets. We wore our green "FREEkin' Awesome" shirts (a nod to the Nike Free shoes we wear when we run), with black sleeves and black shorts. To satisfy yet another tradition, we clipped flowers in our ponytails for the race. Amelia wore deep blue, Wendy wore orange, and I wore green.
|Flowers in our hair, flowers everywhere
The race began a little hectically with over a thousand folks battling for space. After the crowd thinned a bit, we were able to chat and run tangents easily. The first mile clicked off in 9:04. Amelia gradually accelerated during the second mile. At one point, she asked me how fast we were going. "Do you really want to know?" I asked. "No, you're right," she said. We ran that mile in 8:45, and it featured a course change that I hadn't anticipated, but it didn't throw off our race... since we weren't racing. :o)
The first water station was at the beginning of the third mile. Amelia threw water over her head instead of drinking. Wendy and I had removed our arm warmers, but Amelia had on a full shirt. The water helped cool her. We finished our third mile in 8:35, much faster than we planned. However, the real fun was about to start.
|Running into Kathryn at the finish
Amelia started spotting folks she wanted to pass. Little by little she reeled in folks who had started too quickly. She did this while talking, singing, laughing, clapping, telling cross country stories, etc. I was starting to have trouble talking, so I just listened and enjoyed the front row seat. On the last mile, I saw three friends, two who had finished (Aaron and Douglas), and one who was running (Kathryn). It always gives me a boost of energy to see friends while running.
When we rounded the corner, the finish line was a mere 100 meters away. Amelia kicked hard. I tried to join her, but I couldn't maintain her pace. She passed three men on that short 100 meters to the finish line, and Wendy and I finished a few seconds behind her. The final mile was 8:04, and Amelia won her age group.
Here are the statistics from the race:
Name: Shamrock Run
Date: March 15, 2014
Distance: 4 mi.
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
Course: Fairly flat
Data: Click here to view data.
Place: 307 of 1448
Division: 23 of 170
Results: Click here.
Weather: 9 mph WNW wind, Humidity 65%, 39°
Thanks to Ed for accompanying us and taking photographs!