Every year, Boston College holds the Welles Remy Crowther Red Bandanna 5k Run to honor the sacrifice that Welles Crowther made by helping to save people in the Twin Towers during 9/11. His connection to BC?…he is an alum and played on the lacrosse team. If you’ve never heard of this man and what he did, I highly encourage you to watch the video that ESPN has on their website about him. When we found out what he did and that BC has an annual 5k, it immediately became part of our todo list. Upon deciding that we were going to do it, I had about one month to train..Cade as well, but he’s been running for awhile, so this wasn’t as big a deal.
Come race day, it was a cold (in the 30s) fall morning, and we headed to campus at about 7am on a Saturday. Before the race, there was an opening ceremony with Welles’ parents who gave a brief, motivational speak. I believe his father brought many tears in the crowd when he talked about “seeing my son in all of you.” I know I felt the feels tingle, and it wasn’t just from the cold. After this, Baldwin (remember him?) lead us to the start line. It was nice that they had provided pace markers to organize everyone, and while I kept to the back at the 10 minute mile, Cade went up to the 8 minute mile marker. Then, soon enough we were off! One of the memories that I’ll take away from this came next when I got a high five from Welles’ father, who was standing at the edge with his hand out, rooting all of us on.
Feeling the adrenaline and the warmth from finally moving, the first mile and a half went pretty smoothly. At about the 1.8 mile mark, I could really feel it and decided to take my first walk break. Just a little bit past the 2 mile mark, I picked it back up, but then came the dreaded hill on the south side of campus. I knew this was part of the course and that it would be rough. Struggling a bit, I decided to walk the majority of the hill then finish it and the rest of the race strong. In the end, I got through the full 3.1 miles just under 30 minutes..the best I had ever done! I’ll say, while doing a race like this when you don’t really consider yourself a runner is pretty rough, it was actually life changing in the fact that you get to prove to yourself that you and your body are capable of something that you knew would be a challenge. I don’t imagine that this will be my last 5k, and who knows, maybe someday I’ll upgrade to longer races.