Foot Notes: Thank you, Bowie, for the miles and wiggles
It gives me goosebumps to think of how a pet can connect us from a previous time in our lives to the world we currently live.
When Bowie first came into our lives nearly 14 years ago, it was so challenging to keep up with her boundless, wiggly energy. I guess you could say she took me for walks back then. Bowie would drag me on the sweatiest of walks around our old apartment complex and was never patient enough to let me light up a cigarette.
By the time Bowie reached her later stages of life, I was a runner and had long since kicked my decade-long habit. We were still going for walks, but she had slowed down considerably. While I was ready to go miles, she barely had enough energy to get to the stop sign.
Life has moved so fast. And now she's gone. It's unfair.
The initial sting, and ensuing weekend-long bout of sadness, was hard enough. But trying to resume life "just like normal" afterward has been just as difficult. I'm still catching myself calling for Bowie when I accidentally drop a piece of food on the ground. I'm still watching my step at bedtime to make sure I don't trip over her pillow. I'm still waiting for her to nuzzle me like a cat when I tie my shoes, to delay me from leaving for work.
Even running, one of my great escape mechanisms, has been a challenge. In the past I've run with plantar fasciitis, a sore back, and in extreme heat and cold. I've run through headaches, long-distance falls, and dog bites.
But running while in a heightened emotional state — like with a broken heart — is a different experience altogether.
I don't know if I'll ever forget the day last week I dragged myself to the treadmill and went on one of my most tearful runs. It came after a morning of dejectedly sitting on the couch in silence. When I left the living room and made my way over to begin my workout, there was a tingly feeling in my legs and arms that sent chilling reverberations to every nerve in my body.
My run was unbearable for the first few moments. My body was shaking, and my eyes were flushed with hot tears. A big part of me felt guilty for trying to "enjoy" a run so soon after my loss.
But as my run went from steps to minutes to miles, I grew more and more comfortable with the pain of running. The speed setting was above and beyond my comfort zone, but when I found myself in those tough moments of truth where I often back off or quit, I instead turned up the speed. With memories of Bowie flying through my head and warm tears streaming down my cheeks, I had one of my fastest treadmill runs of the year.
At the end of it, I could only hug my kids (who quickly withdrew from my sweaty embrace) and offer a thank you to my old dog, who in her own way helped pull me into this energizing and therapeutic world of running.
Thank you, Bowie, for everything you gave our family. Now go enjoy those wiener dog races in the sky.
Results: Record number of runners turn out for Donut Alley Rally
To say that the Krumpe's Donut Alley Rally 5K was a fast race would be an understatement. Try the word incendiary.
A record 693 runners turned out for the race in Hagerstown, with the top 34 runners all breaking 20 minutes. None were faster than Darren Harman, a South Hagerstown graduate and runner for Utah State, who blasted off for victory in 14:37 over Boonsboro's Henry Schmidt (14:46) and Hagerstown's David Butts (15:33). Jana Fridrichova took top female honors in 19:24 over fellow Hagerstown runners Rebecca Tellez (19:44) and Lauren Stine (20:28).
There were no shortage of fast times in the Krumpe's race, as shown by blazing times from Chambersburg's Trentin Overcash (15:40), Smithsburg's Jonah Smith (15:44), Rob Hovermale (19:19), and Jacob Pryor (19:34), Hagerstown's Gabe Conder (15:49), Ryan Rasco (16:38), Timothy Witmer (17:40), Finn McGreevy (18:09), Jacob O'Neil (18:10), Dharma Bhatt (18:15), Elom Ekakpo (18:45), Bryan Seifarth (18:46), Will Marquiss (18:57), Walker Mason (19:11), Malik Bagwell-Cook (20:14), and Cheryl Scholl (20:44), and Williamsport's Mark Eissens (16:19).
In Greencastle, the Fred Kaley 5K/5-Miler saw Chambersburg rising senior Nick Monheim run away for victory. Monheim, 17, captured the 5K race in 17:00 over Greencastle's Hayden Parks (18:02) and Ewan Coy (20:37). They were followed by Greencastle's Isaac Boyer (20:40), Steven Hyne (22:17), Ryan Yost (27:03), and William Rundle (29:40), Waynesboro's John Cramer (27:02), Hagerstown's Carrie McMahon (27:25) and Brian Mease (28:12) and Chambersburg's Brad Etchberger (27:35) and Jennifer Einherst (28:09).
Smithsburg's Rob Hovermale, 57, was the overall winner in the Kaley 5-Miler, earning victory in 32:52 over Greencastle's Chad Vaughn (33:35) and Stan Vaughn (34:26). Other local finishers included Hagerstown's Shane Miller (36:06) and Judy Price (1:09:26), Chambersburg's Jeremy Hawk (36:50) and Neal Hospelhorn (44:44), Greencastle's Andrew Coy (39:57), Jamie Coy (42:28), and Lori Helman (58:50), and Mercersburg's Mitch Hawbaker (43:44) and Tom McCulloh (57:50).
In Laporte, the mother-daughter team of Chambersburg's Sarah and Ryder Boward each showcased their running prowess at the Griffin 5K. Sarah, 42, finished as the top female in 21:56 while Ryder won the 1-12 AG with a 28:10.
Hagerstown's Jamie Wisz picked up a win at the Frederick Women's Distance Festival, claiming the top spot in the 5K race with a 21:17 over Boonsboro's Tracie Cook (29:35) and Emily Bannon (41:30), Smithsburg's Dawn-Miller Wisz (32:28), Anna Herchenrother (32:31), and Cara Herchenrother (38:57), Hagerstown's Zoe Kelly (32:37), Samantha Kreuzburg (37:44), Sara Wesley (47:04), and Emily King (56:25), and Sharpsburg's Laura Schug (34:55).
The Carlisle Downtown Mile saw Shippensburg's Ori Rinaman lead all Franklin County finishers with a time of 6:29. Rinaman was followed by Chambersburg's Nicolesha Monahan (7:09) and Brad Etchberger (8:09), Fayetteville's Amanda Kaiser-Jones (8:20), Shippensburg's Abigail Bohannon (8:22) and Michael Clepper (9:07), and Mercersburg's Maranda Turner (9:34).
Chambersburg's Kate Chasler logged a 27:21 at the Run for Reading 5K in Mechanicsburg while Darah Wolf, also from Chambersburg, posted a 36:53 at the Pirate 5K in Harrisburg.
Finally, we'd like to wish a congratulations to Shippensburg's Aaron Feather and Waynesboro's Rheeanna Walters, who both gutted out finishes at the Eastern States 100 at Little Pine State Park. Feather finished the 100-mile race in 33:05:58, while Walters crossed the finish line in 34:24:01.
Upcoming running events in the area
Baker Trail Ultra Challege 50-Miler (Saturday, Aug. 28, in Brookville); Ben & Tim Day 5K (Saturday, Aug. 28, in Hershey); Crystal Lake 25K (Saturday, Aug. 28, in Hughesville); Hyner Half (Saturday, Aug. 28, in Hyner); Lancaster Junction Trail 5K/10K (Saturday, Aug. 28, in Manheim); Rail Trail 10-Miler (Saturday, Aug. 28, in York); Roof Park 10K/5K (Saturday, Aug. 28, in New Cumberland); Steve Fealtman Memorial Trail Run (Saturday, Aug. 28, in Carlisle); I Believe in Me Back to School 5K (Saturday, Aug. 28, in Frederick, Md.); Burning Coal Marathon (Sunday, Aug. 29, in Rimersburg); Hellbender Half Marathon (Sunday, Aug. 29, in Bear Gap); 5K Run/Walk Among Balloons (Sunday, Aug. 29, in Westminster, Md.); Catch a Pig 5K (Saturday, Aug. 29, in Bel Air, Md.).