Sunday, August 11, 2013

Greek Run: Fun with the Yinzers

I went over for Wayne Kurtz "Greek Run" festivities over Pittsburgh (actually Wexford, if that makes a difference) way.

This is a party Wayne hosts every year, in a timed race format: You can run 6 hours, 12 hours, 24 hours, with the running to be over at 5 pm when the eating! begins.

I went with the 6 hour event, and actually got a decent night sleep in, not even leaving my house until 7 am for the 2 hour drive over.  It was fairly easy to find the place, with the pop up tent aid station right by the road.

 There was a 4 mile "Golf Course" Loop which brought you by the aid station tent, then a 2 mile "Nature" Loop back to the tent.  Runners merely needed to mark the their completed loops on the big boards.

 This was my first time to North Park, and it was very nice!  There are many more trail than what we ran on, but the short format made it easy to NOT carry anything, other than water for any loop.  I didn't even put my hydration vest, despite my plan.  It was a warm day, borderline hot, but not as humid as "normal" here in PA.  Almost all of the course was in the trees, so that was a bonus.

   Lots of deer family in the park.  I almost ran into one female, I was watching the trail, looked up, and about looked her in the eye! Scared me more than her, I am sure she is used to it.

 About ten feet later I saw this handsome guy in velvet.  Nice eight point rack going on.

 I didn't take many runner pics because I wasn't sure who "exactly" was in the Greek Run versus just random runners out for the day.  One runner did stop and ask me if a race was happening.  I said Fat Ass, and I don't think he understood the term..
 But I did know these two yinzers, that is Rick Freeman and Cam Baker!!

Rick was running the 24 hour event.  Notice the little ups and downs.  On a loop course, over and over again, this is very wearing.  This would be a tough 24 run!!!

Wayne's wife makes all the food for the party. This means homemade spanokopita,  stuffed grape leaves, meatballs, pasta, chicken, some great feta-cheesed potatoes, salad, fruit, BAKLAVA,  and a bunch more food!  I only ate "one " plate as I did not want to go into a food coma on my drive home; but I sure wanted to eat more!

Apparently I ran the most loops for the female in the 6 hour run, and I WON BAKLAVA!  I was sent home with my wonderful little homemade package, and it is awesome! 
Jan, me, and Wayne Kurtzll

This was a great completly low key event I was happy to have the chance to attend! Wayne had a date change, as he has The 24 hour Sprint Triathlon occuring next weekend.

Oh yeah, I do actually have a running note:  I got back to the AS tent just about 4 pm.  I knew I didn't have time for another "long" loop but I did have time for the 2 mile.  A friend had just biked up and remarked he would go with me on the short loop.  I told him to get his running shoes if he was going to go, I had to be done by 5PM.  While he was doing this,  I drank more water, and some sweet tea.  Finally he was ready, and off we went. But I was determined to be done at 5 pm, and I lost him on the first downhill.

Despite runnining this loop three times prior, I really wasn't sure where the mile one was; and I had lost about ten minutes at the AS.  I glance at my watch. 430pm.  Ok, should still have time.  Next glance at the watch: 447 pm. Well, crap! I don't think I can do it.

I am now RUNNING.  I am running up hills!! I need to get to the bathtub, which is actually a nice spring coming out of the hillside, where we've been dunking hats in and splashing water on ourselves, it's cool and refreshing. I also know the spring is almost at the end of loop.  Where's the tub? Where's the tub? More running up hill.  Finally, tub, another short climb that I walk (booo).  I get to the road where it's just a climb up the grass hill back to the AS.  I glance at my watch. To my surprise, it is 4.55 pm!! Woohoo! I got this!

But I still RUN up the hill, just to make sure I make it there under the 5pm cut off.  I get there at 4.57 pm.

I get cheers, then I am told,  all I had to do was start my loop before 5 pm and it would count. In fact, I "had time" to get another loop in.  (Some timed event rules call for you finishing the loop in the time constraint, others, like this, you just have to start the loop before the cut off.)  I decide I am done! and hungry. I just find it funny that  I felt called to run my ass off, in the last mile, of a FA event.

Very nice time with the Yinzers in the Burgh.   Thank you to Wayne and Jan Kurtz for your hospitality, hope to make another Greek Run next year!

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