Every April, thousands of people gather in Tempe, Ariz., to Run, Walk and Honor at Pat’s Run. The 4.2 mile race honoring the late Pat Tillman has grown significantly in its eight-year existence. The race this year was capped at 28k, and sold out a week before. Pat’s Run benefits Pat Tillman Founation which aids military veterans and their spouses in their educational pursuit. According to the Tillman Foundation website, to this date, “171 Tillman Military Scholars representing 32 states and attending 59 academic institutions nationwide have been awarded over $2.2 million in scholarship support.” There are few better feelings than crossing the 42-yard line in Sun Devil Stadium as you know what you just ran for an outstanding cause.
This was my fourth time participating in Pat’s Run. I previously ran in 2008 (time of 47:03), 2009 (time of 50:29) and 2011 (time of 48:15). I finished in 43:47 on Saturday and was surprised that A) my knees, groin, ankles, etc., did not hurt during the race, B) other than my calves being a bit stiff, I was not sore the next day and C) I think I could have ran harder. I used to run track in high school and have been thinking lately about getting back into running consistently. At the Expo after Pat’s Run, I noticed there is a half-marathon in Tempe/Scottsdale in November… maybe I should train for that?
Regardless of whether or not I decide to run a longer race in the near future, I will definitely do Pat’s Run again next year. If you are in Tempe next April, you should also sign up to Run Walk and Honor at the ninth annual Pat’s Run. Even if you can’t make it to Arizona next year, be sure to check out the Tillman Foundation’s website for information on Shadow Runs across the country.