Barefoot Rick's Patriots'
Ultramarathon Report -
A Nine Hour and 11 Minute Remembrance Run - September 11, 2009
Philippians 4:13 - I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.
(NOTE: I chose to be
a RUNNER this day, and not walk any of the course!)
Official Results Below! (or Click Here)
|13||Barefoot Rick Roeber||236||M/53||56||9:02:22.6||13:18/M||40.768|
A month ago, I was not sure whether I would be able to run the Heart of America Marathon on Labor Day, let alone the Patriot's Run a few days later because of my struggle with knee pain this past summer. However, after Monday's successful finish at the HOA Marathon, I signed up for the Patriot's Run on Wednesday, feeling very little discomfort. As a matter of fact, my knee actually felt strengthened and ready to take on another challenge. I didn't really have any expectation of distance, but I knew I would be pleased with anything above 26.2 miles, making this an ultramarathon for me. Three years ago, I ran 40.1 barefoot miles at the 2006 Patriot's Run. That was beyond my expectation for this event.
The record number of 400 participants made the starting area at Two Trails Park in Olathe Kansas a bit crowded at noon on 9/11/09. Three camps of service men had just finished their 9 hour and 11 minute run in Afghanistan as we all lined up to tackle our ultra-marathon distance (and other respective distances). The great thing about this run is that you can choose how little or how much you might decide to run. Some chose the marathon distance (26.2 miles). Others chose to come out and just run a few laps to be part of this wonderful remembrance event (all proceeds benefit the Salvation Army and their disaster and familial rescue efforts). We counted down the last few seconds at noon and we all started our first lap around the 3/4 mile asphalt loop.
The support of the military was awesome at this event as many soldiers, airmen, sailors, and marines were participating and cheering others on. The laps continued to add up as those of us who were running the entire 9 hours and 11 minutes continued to circle the loop. Many families were there cheering their loved ones on, as well as all runners. The awesome donations from area pizza retailers, Krispy Creme Donuts, and many other food vendors made stopping at the main shelter very pleasurable to restore some much needed carbohydrates. I continued to feel pretty good, as I kept adding laps. By 7 p.m., it dawned on me that I could possibly break my old record. I ended up stopping and resting a final time at 9:02 p.m. with 40.77 barefoot miles. I was extremely pleased!
At 9:11 p.m., when the event ended, we all gathered at the finish line while taps were played on a bugle. It was moving as we all remembered why we were there and the sacrifice of so many. May God bless America and may we never forget!
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