PRA photo
Issue: # 39
March  2014
In This Issue
From the Top
Fiesta 10K/5K
Runner Of The Month
Azalea Trail Run
PRA Events/News
Lou GregoryAward
Officers/Board Needed
Healthy Lives
TriGulf Coast

Mission of the PRA

The Mission of the Pensacola Runners Association is to promote, support and develop running and racing along the northern Gulf Coast. Our objective is to provide information, education, training, social and sporting events for competitive and non- competitive runners and walkers of all ages, races, genders and abilities.


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From The Top


By Lewis Reddoch 


Welcome to your March Rundown!
I love this time of year because the spring running season is in full swing. Every weekend Facebook is loaded with pictures and posts of our members participating in races from New Orleans to Panama City and all points in between.  Congratulations to all of you who love the sport and enjoy the camaraderie of traveling to races.  Closer to home we have a LOT of great events to choose from on our Race Calendar.  You can access the Race Calendar 24/7 on your PRA website at:

Your Pensacola Runners Association is gearing up our 40th annual Fiesta of Five Flags 10K/5K coming on May 3rd.  This year's Fiesta promises to be better than ever so be sure you are registered and ready for a great time.  Make a day of it by taking in the Fiesta Crawfish Festival afterwards.  Admission is free with your race entry.  Spread the word to your friends and co-workers to join us for this family-friendly event!
I would like to encourage all of our members to become more involved with the PRA. It takes a tremendous amount of support to put on the races and give back to the community.  We can always use volunteers to help with all aspects of planning, promoting and producing our events.  If you or someone you know would like to volunteer, email the Volunteer Coordinator or me from
We have a lot of good articles and club news in your March Rundown, so emjoy, and feel free to forward it to your friends. We have the best deal in the world on membership at only $15, individual, or $20 for family memberships.  Again, I encourage you to help us recruit new members to join the Pensacola Runners Association today.
Pensacola has so many beautiful places to run and walk, so lace up your shoes and I'll see you out there. 
Be safe and happy running!

40th Fiesta of Five Flags 10K/5K

Over 1,000 runners are expected to toe the starting line for the 40th annual Fiesta of Five Flags 10K/5K on May 3rd. The Fiesta is the oldest race in Northwest Florida and has featured some of the best runners in the South and the nation.
Start Of The 10K Race
Olympians Jeff Galloway and Keith Brantly have won the Fiesta and Brantly still holds the course record with a BLAZING 28:06!  The Fiesta has been the Southeast 10K Regional Championship as well as the Florida 10K State Championship on two occasions.
Michael Green Wins The 2013 Fiesta
You can register by visiting the Fiesta of Five Flags 10K/5K page on the PRA website.  You'll want to be part of the action with a great field, a historic course and a fantastic post-race celebration with food, refreshments, a kids' play area and an awesome band.  Your race entry entitles you to free admittance to the Fiesta Crawfish Festival as well.  Finally, the Lou Gregory Award will be presented during the awards ceremony.
Running Through The Canopy Of Trees On 12th Avenue
Runner Of The Month - Mary Emmons

Consistency is the key to Mary Emmons' running success.  Three to four  days a week, she runs 4-6 miles unless she is training for a longer race. 
That routine has led to her staying in great shape and injury-free.

Mary was born in Taipei, Taiwan and has lived in Northwest Florida since 1978.  She works at Gulf Power as the Senior Administrative Assistant to the Distribution General Manager.  She is very proud of her two great kids - Brittney, a former collegiate athlete who has completed her Masters degree and works with the Utah State gymnastics team, and Tyler, who soon will enter graduate school in advertising.  This month is her third anniversary of beginning running.  
Mary Emmons Races Towards The Finish Line
Mary states that her favorite race is the Fiesta of Five Flags 10K.  She signed up for it one year, but had to leave that weekend for storm duty with Gulf Power in another area of the country and missed it.  Last year's event was her first time completing the race and she had "a blast!"  She also loved the Savannah Rock N Roll Half Marathon last November.  Completing a large half-marathon increased her confidence and encouraged her for other races in the future.  She's now training for the Rock N Fly Half Marathon and the Peachtree Road Race is on her schedule for July 4th.

Races are motivating for Mary and help her stay disciplined in her training routine.  Her primary running goal is to ensure that she's given "110%" in her preparation for each event.  Running (along with working out) is one of her favorite activities and she also loves to take advantage of living near one of the world's most beautiful beaches.  A great afternoon would find her on Santa Rosa Island relaxing with the sun, sand and water.  Numerous other outdoor activities are also high on her list.

So when you see Mary out training or at the races, be sure and say hello!

EDITOR'S NOTE: this photo is courtesy of Bradley Walborn taken for the Krewe Du Ya Yas "I Pink I Can" 5K race.    

Azalea Trail Run Race Report

The 37th annual Azalea Trail 10K/5K Run was again a huge event with over 4000 finishers in the two races.  The elite field was highlighted by Olympian Janet Cherobon Bawcom, two-time Double Bridge Run Champion, in the women's race.  She won setting a PR in the process.

The race course has been reversed in recent years and now finishes on Government Street.  A great post-race party was held in the Mobile Civic Center with a band, food, refreshments and an Expo.  The event was well-managed and was a memorable experience for all participants.  There were many Pensacola and Ft. Walton Beach runners and walkers in the massive competition. Congratulations to the Port City Pacers on another quality race!

Bill Rodgers Won 4 Azalea Trail Runs
PRA Events And
Other Race News

The Bear Lake 4 Mile Trail Challenge will be held on May 17th and will feature a classic trail run course along with a fun cookout.  Race Directors Angelika Cope and Diane Martinez are preparing for another great outdoor experience at this race.  This event serves as the PRA's annual meeting and the new Officers and Board of Directors will be elected at the awards ceremony.
Bear Lake 4 Mile Trail Challenge
The PRA Gary McAdams Sandshaker 5K Run is on Pensacola Beach again this year on June 7th. This race benefits the Gary McAdams Scholarship Fund which is used to award scholarships to outstanding scholar-athletes in area high schools.  The race is know as fast, flat and fun with great scenery on Santa Rosa Island.  There will be an outstanding post-race celebration at the Sandshaker.
Gary McAdams 5K Run On Pensacola Beach 
Blue Angel Rock N Fly Half Marathon/5K - Pensacola NAS - March 29th

Michelle Hill Raider Run 5K - Navarre - April 5th

Navy Federal 5K - downtown Pensacola - April 12th

Mullet Man Triathlon - Perdido Key - April 19th

Run For Their Lives 5K - Pensacola Beach - April 26th

Beach Blast Triathlon/Duathlon - Mexico Beach - April 26th

The PRA website, complete with race calendar, race results and individual PRA event pages is at  
Lou Gregory Award
Nominations Close April 1st
Time is VERY short to submit nominations for the Lou Gregory Spirit Award. The PRA established this award, named for the legendary Dr. Lou Gregory, to honor the individual(s) who have demonstrated great leadership and enthusiasm in promoting and maintaining the sport of running in the Northwest Florida community.  It is presented at the awards ceremony at the Fiesta of Five Flags 10K/5K race. If you have a suitable nominee, please email President Lewis Reddoch at   
The Lou Gregory Award
Officers/Board Members Needed For PRA
The Pensacola Runners Association is looking for a few good women and men.  We have a couple of openings on the Board of Directors for board members and one officer position (Vice-President) is open as well.  Yes, it can be some work, but it's also an opportunity to be a member of a great team performing a valuable mission for Northwest Florida. If you are interested, please contact Lewis Reddoch at or Charles Gheen at 

My First Half Ironman


by Corey Dell




I rarely talk about myself when it comes to the Rundown article. It is mostly focused on a healthy topic relating to the company I work for, Healthy Lives. I was asked this month to focus on my training for my very first Half ironman. 


I guess I should start by saying it all started with a New Year's Resolution in 2012 of completing a sprint triathlon. I did competitive swimming growing up, I knew how to run (not very fast, I may add), but I never had any bike training. That year I bought a bike, did Mere Mortals, and really enjoyed the Santa Rosa Island Triathlon. 


Training kept me interested enough to do a handful of sprint triathlons and I even did the Patriot 9/11 in South Florida. So, New Year's Resolution 2014, what could I possibly do to push myself even more? Sure, why not a half ironman? I apparently didn't think of the time that needs to be dedicated to running, biking, and swimming. 


Six days of my week are committed to at least one of the three disciplines and I still devote time to my crossfit training. My days often start at 4:30 am and don't end until about 10 pm, but keeping my eyes on crossing the finish line has gotten me through the extensive training so far. I have actually found a small group doing the same 70.3 training, so it definitely helps out with accountability.


I know I'm not going to cross the finish line first, but I'm going to give this thing 110%. Obviously I have a time frame I am shooting for, but I will have to wait to share that with you next time!! I'll leave you with a quote that can be thought of in your everyday life... "If you're doing your best, you won't have any time to worry about failure"... H. Jackson Brown, Jr.        

Corey Dell From Healthy Lives





Finish Before You Start


by Alex Bell 


"Nothing new on race day" is a phrase that most people regard as referring to nutrition, effort levels, technique, or equipment. I think it can be taken further to the actual race itself, through visualization, course familiarization and planned strategy.


The process for getting ready for a race is something that differs from person to person, as well as from race to race and even aspiration to aspiration. Starting from the most basic level, you can decide what you want to do in preparation. So, ask yourself, "What is my goal for this event?" Do you just want to show up and get to the finish line? Do you feel like you want to get out there and press yourself on a certain leg and cruise the rest? Are you shooting for a PR or even a podium? Do you want to beat your training buddy and make them buy you beers? It doesn't matter what you're going into a race to do, but actually knowing it does matter. It allows you to stay within yourself and remove some emotion and anxiety by placing some objectivity into everything. You'll know more of what to do from start to finish by telling yourself what your goals are.

Triathlete Alex Bell

 From there my preference is course familiarity. I think that it doesn't matter what your goals are, knowing where you physically are going to be is important. If you don't know the course at all, using a website like MapMyRide, MapMyRun, or Strava is a good tool for both the bike and run. I check on the course a few times just to know where it's hilly, where it's flat, general directions so I know how the wind will affect me, etc.


Knowing all of that lets me save a touch of mental energy by not worrying if my effort is not producing what I expected it to as I unknowingly head into the wind or up a false flat. For pure run events it can help with knowing the tangents of the course too. Beyond that, I can't count the number of times I've heard "Where are the aid stations for this race?" and robotically spat the locations out. Knowing your aid stations and porta-potty spots (and penalty tents for some of you out there) comes in handy.  


Swim courses are a different beast though, because all you really have is a map until you get there. You may know the general route and start format, but that's pretty much it until you get closer to the event. Conditions matter more for the swim - water temp, surf conditions, and currents & tides. The chances of a wetsuit legal race and the mental prep to get out and fight surf and chop are things you can see on a surf forecast. Knowing just how much you'll want to draft on the swim to avoid the current or tidal changes and save energy is something you can use NOAA to geek out on. When you do show up to the race, going to the swim finish and picking a line from the last turn buoy to finish is helpful because all you have to do is turn around and find something noticeable to sight off of. Knowing where the sun is going to be is also nice, as it can be rather blinding as it rises.


One of the things I like the most of mental prep is visualizing the race. I've been through the race in my head a few times by the time I show up on race morning. I see the swim, I know what to do through the bike, and my mind is ready for the run. I feel the rush toward the "end" and it's awesome, and while it may seem dorky to some it's vital to me. There's less guess work, I have a plan and I know how I want it to work, and I've "seen" it work too.


I admit that I might geek out a bit because I find all of this fun to do, but all of this is strategy I use for my races. Your strategy may certainly vary, but at least think everything through. I find myself more able to enjoy the race and have fun by not having to think on the fly as the day progresses by doing this. That's what it's all about anyway. Well, that and beating your friends so you can make them buy you BBQ and beer afterward.

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Lucky Leprechaun 10K/5K In Ft. Walton Beach.

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