After the DARE 5K I thought I might try the Falling Leaves road race on September 25. The Falling Leaves is a scenic run beginning and ending in Utica. I really don’t know much about it, but I have a Falling Leaves shirt I bought at a garage sale a few years ago.
This was the first year I ran the Boilermaker. Shortly after the Boilermaker I kind of crashed and burned, running-wise. I wanted to start up again and thought the shirt might inspire me. The following week I ran into a fellow wearing a different Falling Leaves shirt.
“Oh, the Falling Leaves,” I said. “I was going to run that.”
“It’s not too late,” the guy said. The race was some two days hence. “You can register on the day.”
“It’s too late for me to be running every day and be in shape for it,” I confessed.
Well, I did not crash and burn this year. I had nothing to crash and burn from. I’ve been hovering around 5K shape and sort of looking at the Falling Leaves out of the corner of one eye.
Here’s the problem. I had it in my head that Falling Leaves was a 10K. One of the fun things about running is that just because a run is twice as far does not mean it is twice as hard. When you run like I do, just for fun, a long run is the way to go. Nobody cares if you run slow, and you get kudos just for finishing. When you get right down to it, distance running is easy. You just don’t stop.
I started to feel pretty good about my Falling Leaves plan. So good I went to a friend’s Facebook page, a young athletic guy I met in National Guard who I knew was planning to run the Falling Leaves, and wrote on his wall, “Maybe I can rock the Falling Leaves.”
Then I went to the Utica Roadrunners website for more information, and the whole thing came to a grinding halt. It’s not a 10K. It’s a 14K! That’s only one K less than the Boilermaker! It took me almost two hours to run the Boilermaker (1:46:32, if you really want to know). Who am I kidding with these little 30 minute runs I’ve been doing? Just don’t stop, indeed.
Well, let this be a lesson to me: research before you boast. Anyone wanting more information on the Falling Leaves road race can go to the Utica Roadrunners website, uticaroadrunners.org.