Monday, January 9, 2017

Lightning, Cold and High Winds: Oh My!

While it was another sea to shining sea weekend in Volte, USA, Mother Nature threw her best at us -- and we told her that we won't be shaken.

Lightning.  Frigid temperatures.  High wind gusts.  Yeah, Volte saw it all.

The Dopey Challenge met Rapha Machado and they sent Rapha back to Texas with better parting gifts - namely six medals - than those that score an appearance on the Price Is Right.

Rapha Machado looking strong this past weekend at Disney (but no ears!)
Rapha got things rolling with a 28:10 5K on Thursday and a 55:39 10K on Friday.

Then "an elevated risk of lightning" made its way to the race course on Saturday at the Walt Disney World Resort and the Walt Disney World Half Marathon was cancelled.

Disney's note read, "All registered 2017 Walt Disney World Half Marathon runners will receive their half marathon medal."

Rapha sent a lightning Volte of his own back to Disney by running his own Half Marathon around the resort, going 1:56:52.

He said, "I EARNED my Half Marathon medal today.  I will earn my Goofy and Dopey medal tomorrrow!!!  RunDisney here is my time!  (BIB 21111)

As any good runner in 2017 would do, Rapha even attached the Garmin link for verification!

So Sunday was the marathon, right?  Well, can you say "PR!"?  I knew you could.

Nothing Dopey about Rapha's effort as he notched a 3:57:12, besting his 2016 Chevron Houston Marathon time by a minute and 25 seconds (3:58:37).

It was Rapha's eighth marathon since January 1, 2015.

He was one of 397 Texans who finished the marathon on Sunday and one of 319 Lone Star state residents who also did the 5K and the 10K in addition to the marathon.

One of those was Volte alumni Justin Bui, who posted times of 24:11 in the 5K, 50:48 in the 10K and 3:37:43 in the marathon.

We're pretty sure that Justin has finished all of the Dopey Challenges since it was created in 2014.

His marathon times, courtesy of, at the Walt Disney World Marathon are 3:40:36 (2011), 4:03:14 (2013), 3:40:42 (2014), 3:52:17 (2015), 3:45:12 (2016) and 3:37:43 (2017).

George Rux is all smiles before the 5K with his son.
(Photo courtesy of George Rux.)
George Rux was there too for Thursday's 5K.

When asked how things went, he replied, "Went well.  No time.  It was a fun run I did with my son -- his first running race ever!"

A win in any one's book, obviously.

Long-time Volte friend Mary Kerschbaum, who lived in The Woodlands for many years and now calls the Phoenix, Arizona area home, finished the marathon in 6:18:40.

On Sunday, January 8, Volte's Kate Semmelrogge Thomas had her 9.3 turned into a 5.9.

And even though Kate now lives in San Francisco, those are NOT Richter scale readings.

Kate's note from Hot Chocolate 15K race management, much like Rapha's and Justin's, went like this:  "Attention, San Francisco! Due to the high wind gusts on the Great Highway, we will be shortening today's 15k course, to keep the race entirely in the shelter of the park. We have consulted with the National Weather Service, and no lightning or thunder are expected on the course until after the race is over. All 15k participants who run the shortened course will still receive their medals, and we will have the chocolate waiting at the finish line for everyone!"

Chocolate, of course, is even more important than a medal, right?

Kate knocked out those 5.9 miles in 1:15:07.

What corral was everyone in?  The wind made the corral signs look like strewn lollipops!
(Photo courtesy of Kate Semmelrogge Thomas)
"It was insane," Kate said.  "We ran from a tree that broke right next to us (didn't want to get squashed) and between the wind and rain it was rough, but I had a great time.

"Totally worth running in the storm for the chocolate!"

And then it was cold.  Freezing cold.  In Houston.  (Well, Cypress.)

Try 20 degrees cold and Brayden Park was having nothing to do with it during Saturday's Candy Cane Fun Run 5K at Salyers Middle School in the Cy-Fair Independent School District.  (This race was originally scheduled for Saturday, December 3, but was wiped out by the same weather system that cancelled Texas 10 Katy the next day.)

Dad ran with Brayden the first mile and then the two made a pact:  Jerritt would do his best Cheetah impersonation (again) and Brayden would still finish (and he did).

Taking second in the 40-and-over Santa Division (and 10th overall), Jerritt stopped the clock in 22:10.

Volte friend Jon Walk, who was in the same race mileage neighborhood as Park last year, enjoyed the cold temperatures as any good Pennsylvania native should.

He finished in 28:48, two days after moving into a new 5-year age group.  (He noted that the age in the results was NOT right, adding two to his previous number instead of one!)

He'll survive and so will all of Volte with the threat of another type of weather this Sunday at the Chevron Houston Marathon and Aramco Houston Half Marathon:  rain!

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