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Ninth Annual Habitat for Humanity Run
Inaugural 15km race
Second over run

2011 time: 1:02:07 (PR/10km)
2012 time: 1:49:34 (PR/15km)

Placing: 37th / 41 runners (last male)


My first race since August's Run Wild 5k cross-country, the "Season of Endurance" has officially begun. This series of races into April will include a plethora of 12, 15, 21, and 42km races.

Having been sick for the week (allergies, visit to the doctor, cold, wheezing, et al), I knew this was not to be a PR-type race, but this was my first attempt at the 15km race distance.

67 ran the 5km, 32 ran the 10km, and 41 did the 15km. There was a larger competing race across the Congaree for breast cancer. This was Habitat for Humanity's annual race at Providence Presbyterian Church, a debt of gratitude for race director Jennifer Covington, whom I've known since we discussed on Facebook the Myrtle Beach fiasco.

And this course is full of hills, where you must slow down, so I slowed because (1) I was recovering from illness, (2) this was full of hills, and (3) this was my first 15km, so it was in between the intermediate 10km race distance and the endurance (21km) race distances.

8:00 - Gun. First downhill sweeps uphill from Hummingbird then an uphill sweep to Saluda River Drive. Left to Cardinal and then to Robin Crest, and a few climbs up Terrace View, Sherrywood (with water stop #1), Timber Ridge, Sewanee, and Ridge Crest Drive. Climbs everywhere in just the first 4 km before returning back to Saluda River, where we rejoin the 5k runners (which are long gone by the time we're there), with a downhill trip, then a steep uphill to Mohawk Drive. Finally some flatness before we make a mild climb to Duke Street. Water stop #2 at Duke and Rutland (where 10km runners split again from 5k runners) then Woodland before returning to Duke.

A quick zig-zag to US 378 before heading to Botanical Parkway for the first loop (there is a 5km and 10km turn -- we use the 10km loop), then we return to US 378, then pass the sponsoring car wash and Shell oil change outlet, returning to Hummingbird for the 10km "turn".

9:10 - It's a 70-minute run, seven and change slower than last year's 10km. I located a banana at the church sign before the start, and find it to consume the banana. I would hold it for the second lap, which is the 5k course. Sweep to Saluda River again but stay on the street where the fork at Cardinal stands. The downhills are then followed by deep uphills. No water stop at the turn for 15k runners! Return to Mohawk, and the banana is finished there. Turn back to Duke and the water stop, where we stay straight on the 5k course (do not turn on Rutland). The zig-zag leads to US 378, then again to Botanical (this time we go on the short 5k turn) and finally to US 378, then turn right to Hummingbird. The awards ceremony was already taking place when I crossed the finish line at 9:49 AM.

The time? 1:49:34.

Next week is a dilemma. Registered for the Ray Tanner Home Run 12km in August, but the officials did not process my entry and was told Sunday rejected. There are a few possible chances this week -- it's my only way to take it. Will I be at the start line or in the gas oven at Carolina Stadium killing myself a la Magda Sorel in Menotti's The Consul?
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