How superheroes made me run faster

I was not looking forward to this week’s long run. I have been trying to get over a cold and while the major congestion has passed, I’m still sluggish and breathing hard gets me coughing. So running, especially anything a bit fast, leaves me feeling even worse.While I tried to think positively about today’s run, I was sucking wind after 2 easy miles and started having thoughts of “how the hell am I going to run 17 miles like this?!” I tired to force myself to think only about the mile ahead and my dread settled down a bit.

By the time I got to the half way point, I was feeling a little better mentally, though still a bit sluggish physically. I had hoped to run the second half of my run at marathon pace, but at mile 8.5, I was not sure that was going to happen.

Then we started running with them. The superheroes.

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I missed out on the photo-op, but my teammates grabbed a pic with Wonder Woman.

CharityTeams, a collaboration of several marathon-running charities held a superhero themed long run today. The idea is great – these runners, raising money for their important causes, are superheroes. And today, they dressed like them on the course.

But there were a lot of them. And while it was fun to watch, it was not as fun to navigate around some of the large groups of runners, running together along the marathon route. I needed a little breathing room, so I decided to run around them.

What started as a few bursts to pass a few groups of runners led to the confidence that I could keep that pace up for the second half of my run. In fact, I was able to drop 35 seconds per mile from mile 13-17. A special thank you also to my running buddy, Ken, who saw the door opening to run a little faster and helped me continue to push the pace.

I should have known I could do it, but today I needed the help of some superheroes (and Ken) to make me realize I could.

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