A Firecracker on the Fourth


 At last year’s Lutz Independence Day 5K Run, I cramped terribly within the first mile, which I believed to be a result of starting off way too fast (7 mm) and perhaps being too hydrated.  Since last year’s race, I’ve tried to find the right balance of hydration (which I am still trying to figure out), but mostly I avoid drinking 30 minutes prior to my runs.


Fortunately, for this year’s 5K, I avoided starting off too fast and I maintained an 8:30-9:00 mm pace for most of the run.  I stopped at the water stations for a quick drink and to pour water on my head in an attempt to not overheat.



At the start of the race, Tiffany and I spotted a very peculiar patriotic runner.  She wore a flag bikini top, red shorts, combat boots, a stars and stripes tiara and combat boots.  To complete the ensemble, she had a flag sticking out of the back of her shorts.  Since she wore desert combat boots, I assume she must have been a veteran.  Therefore, out of respect for our troops, I will not ridicule her attire, but I have to know one thing:  How could she run with a stick up her butt?  Do they teach that in boot camp?


soldier girl


The 5K course twisted through a residential neighborhood.  To help cool overheating runners, home owners and spectators aimed garden hoses and sprinklers into the streets.   At the one mile mark, a husband and wife team distributed water to the runners, a service they’ve happily offered for the past 20 years. 

 Lutz 5K_1


Lutz 5K_2


The heat really made the race a struggle, but I survived another ridiculously hot race and thankfully, I avoided any cramping.  My time was o.k.  Honestly, I wasn’t planning to break any PR.  I’m just glad I didn’t pass out from the heat.  Cool Running lists a different time/pace for my race results, but I am going by my good ol’ Garmin.


Time 27:50

Ave Pace 8:58



Even though this race is ridiculously hot, I love the small town fair after the race.  Pony rides, kettle corn and crafts make this race a family affair.  Sadly, my family missed my firecracker performance and the Fourth of July fair again.



The small town fair reminds me of something you would see in a romantic comedy.  Boy meets girl.  Girl pukes on girl from heat exhaustion.  Like projectile vomit, their love is unstoppable.


  1. Sarah Brown says:

    I saw that patriotic lady– didn’t know she ran the 5k in that garb, though! What was her time?

    Also curious about the couple who provided H2O for the last 20 yrs @ the 1 mile mark– did you interview them while you were running?

    I love that you take pics during your races. You’re so cool.

    If you have any pics of Emelina can you email them to me?

  2. Run DMT says:

    @Sarah- I have no idea what her time was or how she finished. I do know I past her, though. 😉

    Did seem like I interviewed them, huh? I am quite the multi-tasking runner. I take pics and interview while running! Hmmm…my pace might improve if I just ran for once!

    I actually remembered reading about the couple in The Laker last year and I told Tiffany about them. After the race, we bumped into Mrs. Hildebrand in the restroom and she shared that little tid bit with us.

    Sent you some pics. Enjoy! 🙂

  3. Monique says:

    I saw the “patrotic lady” after the race talking to someone. She had her boots off and socks pulled down to expose her HUGE blisters on her heels with lots of skin peeled off. Thats gotta hurt! What was she thinking?!?

  4. Tiffany says:

    That race was definitely hot, but not as hot as the man in his 60s wearing ridiculously short American flag shorts (with no lining) that were completely drenched in sweat clinging to his body! Maybe that is why my camera broke during the race…

  5. Kim says:

    Even with 4 pounds worth of combat boots AND a stick up my butt, I completed the 5k in 28:12. The boots added about 5 minutes to my usual race time.

    The blisters have healed, a very small pain to endure compared to that which our troops endure daily.

    I come from a long line of Marines to include my grandfather, husband and brother. I wore the boots in their honor and as a tribute to all those who have afforded me the freedom to wear such rediculous garb.

    My friend does many races in full gear to raise money to support our troops. If I got your attention, mission accomplished!


    See you at the next race and I probably will not be wearing boots so catch me if you can!

    • Run DMT says:

      @Kim- My father was a Marine and I have several Marine friends, who currently serve our country. I only have the utmost respect for our soldiers and what they sacrifice for us on a daily basis. Please know I meant no disrespect to you or your family. I applaud your tenacity to display your support for our troops. I can’t imagine running with blisters, and trust me, if I could get away running in a bikini top, I would totally do it! I don’t know about the flag, though. 😉 Great job on your time despite your injuries! When we meet at our next race, I’m sure you will kick my ass in more ways than one! LOL

      I will definitely visit the link you posted and show my support our troops.

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