79. Jimmy the Greek’s Maine Mall 5K, 2015

This race is kind of special, because it’s the only one in New England that I’ve done three times. In Charleston this was common, but since then I’ve moved a bunch of times and just didn’t have the roots required to be a regular anywhere. This lovely race is a confirmation that I am now a permanent Mainer.

I wasn’t sure if I could do the race this year because my wife has started a bakery business and I’m needed at farmers’ markets on the weekends. I waited to be sure that I would be free on race day, and the delay cost me a chance to get a shirt as part of registration. I could have just bought one, but decided against it because I have maybe a thousand running shirts now. Maybe next year I’ll pick up an extra one or something.

Brian Cribb in a race shirt from 2014.
I decided to wear last year’s shirt. I look a bit pudgy because the winter weight is just starting to come off. I’m slouching because… I’m a slouch, I guess.

The weather on race day was a gift. Blue skies and a comfy temperature have a profound effect upon New Englanders after a harsh winter. Everyone is happy, friendly and easy to please. We couldn’t hear a word of the pre-race briefing due to a crummy bullhorn, but that was okay because everything else was put together very nicely.

I decided to leave my phone in the car so it wouldn’t distract me during the race. I wanted a legitimate time to compare myself to later, and I can’t have that if I’m slowing down to take pictures of stuff. I ran a brisk but cautious three kilometers around the Maine Mall before picking it up a bit in the last two, and I managed to punch it to the Finish Line without throwing up. (It’s very important to not throw up whenever possible.) My time was 25:38. Not as fast as I used to be, but faster than I had expected.

I was a bit shaky on my legs afterward, but I walked and/or jogged to the car for the camera and managed to get some pictures of folks finishing after me. I was especially happy to get people at the 30-minute mark since that’s a common goal for folks. I even got some video. Check out the final push from the dude at 1:40!

After some photos and some chatting with the other runners, I went inside. Pizza was provided free to the runners, along with access to some massage therapists on the back deck. I had skipped breakfast, so I just stuck with the pizza. Then I washed up and was on my way.

Due to the timing of this race, I think I’ll be able to participate every year without missing a market. I’m already looking forward to next year.