As we crossed up over the Stuart bridge the giant red ball rose over the intercostal water ways, we were in awe of the beauty giving birth to a new day. The sun appeared three times its normal size from a distance, as we parked our car to join the slew of runners preparing for the 26th annual “Run for the Pineapple 5k road race.” We arrived plenty of time to take pre-race photos and warm up our legs, as smoke began to blow from the west to east on Sewall Point, and the temperature began to rise from a comfortable 73 degrees to 80 quickly. A sea of over 400 runners lined up at the start line with anticipation of exercise, fun, and maybe a better chip time.
It’s always amazing seeing people from very young to old participating in a sport the whole family can enjoy, and the “Pineapple 5k” is certainly a family event. At 7 am the pop sounded, and runners of all levels moved through the start line chute, once our feet hit the pad chip time began and we were off. We started out with a nice even pace as we made our way through the crowd of slower runners and walkers. Once the crowd thinned out a bit we started the run/walk interval timer as our pace stayed consistent. Running through the beautiful community of Sewall’s point is always a treat, and the neighbors are friendly and motivating. The first mile flew by as we made the turn for our first water stop. The air thick of smoke from a fire west that blew in by the slight breeze, and the temperature hot, made my eyes and throat burn.
Even through the smoke and heat the last three quarters of a mile we picked up the pace as we headed toward the finish line, with an improved finish from last year. Last year’s race was a beginning of a new lifestyle for us, two weeks prior to the race Kevin had his gastric bypass surgery. We hit the finish line at 46:07 with a pace of around 15 minute per mile, today with help from our run/walk interval timer and much training over the past year we crossed the finish line at 38:05! That’s eight minutes shaved off and if I remember last year the weather was warm with no smoke in the air.
It’s always a treat at the finish line with volunteers greeting us with cold towels, water, and of course our medals. The food was plentiful with many choices of fruit, pancakes, bagels, and juices. This year was another sell out as, the event was organized, volunteers, sponsors friendly, and the course beautiful. Always a pleasure running the beautiful Treasure Coast. I’m sure we will be back next year and many more to come.