SALLY (ON THE) FOURTH…
Okay, so this may be the biggest (and punniest) stretch I’ve ever done for a blog post title. But bear with me, it works. Or at least I think it does. Check out the definition:
Sally Forth (verb)- to set out in a sudden, energetic or violent manner.
And I’m using it in reference to the Peachtree Road Race, which is held annually on July 4th in Atlanta and features 60,000 runners (the world’s largest 10K). And there’s a lot of hype (aka energy) surrounding this race each year.
So “sally forth” on July 4th… hence Sally (on the) Fourth. Get it? Bueller? Bueller?
Fine, whatever. It’s too hot and humid out to argue. And it made me smile, so it’s good by me.
Anyway this past Wednesday, I took part once again in Atlanta’s Peachtree Road Race 10K. This was the 12th or 13th time (I kind of like not knowing for sure) I have run the race since 1994 and the sixth time in the last eight years. It is one of my favorite yearly running traditions.
I’ve written several times before about the race, although I think my favorite past post has to do with the people who keep spoiling the reveal of secret shirt design & color. Click here to read all about it.
This year featured a new wrinkle on that theme as the secret was spoiled for me earlier than it’s ever been before… even before the race started. Yup, as I was lined up in corral D (as in “D” for Devine, or more likely “D” for damn slow) I, along with a few thousand other runners, was watching the giant video screen they had erected on the street displaying pre-race coverage. Suddenly one of the TV hosts held up the winning shirt design, declaring that this was the secret shirt we were all running to earn. Cue the simultaneous sea of groans from several hundred runners who were as disappointed as I about the unexpected reveal. This is the one time I wished it actually was fake news.
That was my only complaint with this year’s Peachtree.
I truly do enjoy so many things surrounding this race… the history (this was the 49th year), the neverending sea of runners, and the incredible fan support the city shows. Toss in a holiday vibe, the patriotic feel and the promise of cooking out/partying later in the day. It’s a pretty awesome time.
And as for the heat, humidity, hills and crowded streets, I give them a pass on this race. It’s about the experience, not your finish time. They say this is not the race to shoot for your PR. I would absolutely agree with them, except for the fact that I did earn my 10K PR on this very course (back in 2014).
Now this year was definitely not a Peachtree PR performance for me (not even close), but it didn’t “detract from the fact” (say that fast 10 times) that I still had a blast… even though I knew the shirt design ahead of time. Which was a cool design, by the way.
And I am already salivating about running the Peachtree next July 4th when it (and me) both turn 50. Okay, my birthday is in March but we’ll both be 50 on that day. Atlanta already does a helluva job with this race, so I can only imagine what surprises they’ll have in store for all of us next year.
Just make sure to tie the hands and put a gag on that TV host.
Eat the Peach… and Run on!