Pat's Run, as in Pat Tillman. Now I am the exact opposite of a sports fan, so if you don't know who Pat Tillman was, I completely understand. Since I live in Arizona, and fairly close to ASU, it's impossible not to know who Pat Tillman was.
Pat Tillman was a Phoenix Cardinals football player that turned down a $3.6 million 3 year contract with the Cardinals to enlist in the U.S. Army after the 9-11 attacks. The army had first reported that Tillman had been killed by enemy fire and was awarded the silver star. Later, the Pentagon ruled that Tillman was actually killed by friendly fire when the fighting had escalated on both sides. Read more here.
From their website: The Pat Tillman Foundation is a national leader in providing resources and educational scholarship support to veterans, active service members and their spouses. The Tillman Military Scholars program aids all veterans, specifically the ever-growing population of veterans of Post-9/11 conflicts.
|Specialist Patrick Daniel Tillman (source)|
Since then, my head boss resigned his position from our company after a false alarm heart attack from stress. The doctor at the time had told him that he needed to lose weight or he would die before he reached 60. A month or two ago, he stopped by the office and had lost 50 pounds. He asked me if I was running and I told him I would sign up and run it, too.
Now he and I have always had a love/hate relationship but he told me over and over and over again that I had inspired him with all of my races and that I helped save his life. That might have been a little overly dramatic, but I truly think he was sincere considering the number of times he said it. And he's not one to overly give credit, so I believe he meant those words. And I have to admit: I felt really happy for him when he left my ass in the dirt.
The race is 4.2 miles in honor of Tillman's number when he played for ASU, not when he was a Phoenix Cardinal, which really threw me off when I saw this in the starting corrals:
|Tillman was #40 when he played for the Cards|
|Arizona State Sun Devil Stadium - also the finish line.|
The finish line is at the 42 yard line in the stadium. This is race is incredibly crowded, so even though I was able to run most of it, running the last half mile to the end is nearly impossible with the amount of people being funneled into the stadium. I did manage to sprint the last little bit to the finish line.
|Quite a hike up to get water|
Over all, I actually liked this race because it was more challenging than a 5K with the additional mile and it was actually very moving. Crossing the finish line in the stadium was fun, too. I just wish it hadn't been so hot. And that I had remembered my sun glasses. And maybe skipped the wine the night before.
Plus, it's always nice to know you've inspired someone to make a difference in their life.