Race Pacing a Friend Sure Ain't for Sissies!

Kristen Marks

by Kristen Marks

Kristen Marks is a travel enthusiast, empty-nest mom to two young adult children, athlete, attorney, author, speaker, proud wife of almost three decades (to the same wonderful man!), and the founder of My Pink Lawyer®, Florida Estate & Legacy Planning attorneys. Kristen has been crafting professional estate plans for Floridians and their families for over 28 years.

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"What the heck did I get myself into?," I asked myself for the 10th time in 10 minutes.


I was pacing a friend during the last 6 miles of the Pensacola Half Marathon yesterday. No, not "Crazy Amy," but a new friend, Jessica, I met during our Running Wild Half Marathon training.


I knew Jessica was faster than me (not to mention 15 years younger!) but I figured if I warmed up for three miles first, that I could maintain a steady, fast (well, at least fast for me) pace for her. 


Besides, she said she was shooting for 10 minute miles. Totally doable, though still a fast clip for my short legs.


Nope, our first mile after we met up halfway through the race on 12th Avenue was 9 minutes 30 seconds.

Jessica Half Marathon.jpgMeeting up with Jessica on 12th Avenue

Not wanting to let her down, and knowing she wanted to beat her Half Marathon record of finishing in less than 2 hours, 9 minutes, I picked it up a notch.


Our next split pace over the next mile was even faster.


Then faster yet.


By the last mile, we were flying down the hill on Palafox (well, "flying" by my standards anyway) at an 8:30 split pace.


I knew she was pushing herself since she'd already run 12 miles but I was struggling even more (damn those extra 15 years!). I just couldn't let her see it.


"Keep it up. You're doing great!"


We rounded the corner at World of Beer for the final straight away to the finish line. 


It was a wind tunnel and we were running straight into a headwind. Not good.


It's sad when your "pacer" is thinking about how to tactfully bale out early.


See ya later, Jessica! You go, girl!


Nah, I didn't do that. What kind of friend would I be if I didn't dig deep and give her all I could muster?


I did peel off right before the finishing chute and Jessica finished with a new PR (personal record) of 2:07.


Sometimes we just need a little motivation to keep us moving in the right direction and to push us to greater heights. 


***Speaking of motivation, you DO have a current, written Family Succession Plan in plan in place, right? If not, we can help.***


My Blackwater Half Marathon is next Saturday. Don't expect an 8:30 pace out of me, nor even a 2:07 finish. I'll be lucky to finish in 2 1/2 hours!


Kristen “What Was I Thinking” Marks


P.S. Attention parents! Mark your calendars for this Tuesday’s Facebook Live broadcast on protecting your children’s inheritance from unnecessary government interference, financial predators and greedy family members. Details are on our Facebook page.


P.P.S. Did you miss our Facebook Live broadcast on preserving your special needs child's inheritance? Here it is in case you missed it.

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