Aaron's Real Opinions:

Aaron's Crazy Race Diary - 2008
Day 39
The Day After the Race...
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
363 Days Until Bolder Boulder 2009 (May 25, 2009)

When I awoke, I felt better than I should have, especially given my pathetic performance. I was terribly disappointed in my time. I couldn't believe that I took 75:39 - almost 76 minutes - to run a race I finished last year in under 62 minutes (61:53). My time had taken a tremendous 14-minute dive and I had no good excuse.

The results meant I had finished in 29,373rd place out of 47,443 runners and walkers who finished the Race. There were kids 6 years old who had finished well ahead of me. In fact, there were six girls who were only 6 years old who had run the Race faster than I did and one of them did it in less than 47:47. Heck, even a 76 year-old woman beat me (she did it in under 74 minutes) as did two 80 year-old men (they did it in a little over 68 minutes and a little under 73 minutes). So much for my being a macho guy! Almost 7,000 out of the 54,040 entrants did not make it to the end. I felt bad for them.

Out of 21,528 males who did the Race, I placed 15, 723rd. That meant I was in the bottom third of finishers. Clint Wells of Superior, Colorado, finished the Race in 30:52 - 60% less than my time. He ran more than twice as fast as I did to win the Citizens' Division.

I re-checked to see how my running partner Angela had done and saw she had finished in slightly over 71 minutes (71:16) due to my being a sloth on the course yesterday. I knew she could easily break 60 minutes if I weren't holding her back. I had urged her to go all out but she insisted on staying with me. What a trooper.

I decided to use my poor performance as a motivational tool to do better. My goals for the 2009 Bolder Boulder would be ambitious. My first goal, of course, would be to finish the Race without dying. In 2009, the millionth Bolder Boulder runner would be crossing the Finish Line and I wanted to be right there.

My second goal would be to finish in a time better than this year's 76 minutes. That shouldn't be difficult but one never knows what might happen.

My third goal would be to reduce my time by 16 minutes and finish under 60 minutes. If I could get back to times in the 50's, I would be ecstatic. Of course, most people would say a 16-minute reduction in just one year would require serious training as well as major changes in eating and sleeping habits. I decided I would try to make those commitments.

To achieve these goals also meant not waiting until the last minute to lose weight or to train. I decided I would try to lose this Summer that 15 pounds I never lost. It wouldn't be easy but I thought I could do it. With the Democratic National Convention coming to town and all the attendant parties potentially adding 20 pounds to my frame, I knew it would be a challenge but I was up for it - well, at least today I was.

I also decided to make a commitment to being able to run the 6.7-mile White Rocks trail much faster than the 80 to 95 minute times I recently had been logging. If I could be in the 70- to 75-minute range by the end of the Summer and stay in that range for a while, then I would have a real chance at getting my trail time down to the +/-65 minutes. I knew that, if I could run the trail in 65 minutes, I should be able to do the Bolder Boulder in less than 60 minutes.

As a demonstration of my commitment, I went to the YMCA at 5:15 am and began a weight workout. I completed 6 of the 16 machines on my checklist and could tell I was far more tired and worn out than I wanted to admit. That was OK. I already had begun to travel the road of running redemption. We would soon see how far I could go. You can sign up for the 2009 Bolder Boulder so go online and join me now. Just note in your registration you want to run with me - unless you want to run a better time!

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