On Saturday, October 30, 268 individual men and women runners completed the second annual Red Mountain Half Marathon in the allotted five-hour time frame.
Only four individuals were unable to complete the entire race.
Events associated with the Red Mountain Half Marathon were the 13.1-mile individual half marathon; the half marathon relay, in which teams of two to four participants divided the 13.1 miles into stages; and the Youth Progressive Half Marathon, a 13.1-mile race completed over 10 weeks. Thirty-nine teams participated in the relay and 26 youth participated in the Youth Progressive Half Marathon. The youth walked, jogged or ran a half-mile per day, three to four times a week, totaling 12.5 miles. On the day of the half marathon, they completed the last 0.6 mile of the race.
“We worked with Salt River Elementary School on the Youth Progressive and had Martina Ashley, who works at the Education Department, help promote the Red Mountain Half Marathon,” said Salt River Fitness Center Physical Fitness Trainer Rachel Seepie. “Three classes from Salt River Elementary School, those of Ms. Danielle Lansing, Ms. Maria Isabel Enriquez and Ms. Enos, participated in the event. They have the running club and run five days a week. A lot of the children already had logged up to 13 miles two weeks prior to the event.”
The turnout among individuals and relay teams was better than last year. Many people traveled from Zuni Pueblo, the Hopi Nation, Tohono O’odham Nation, Peach Springs, the Navajo Nation, and even California to participate in this year’s run. Participants who were not members of the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community paid an entry fee; the funding generated by the entry fees was put back into the Community’s General Fund to offset the cost of the event.
Community families, employees and organizations handed out water and snacks at different stations along the course. They also encouraged runners to keep running throughout the morning. Red Rock Company supplied the tents, water and snacks and laid out the course of the run. They even provided the results of the Red Mountain Half Marathon on their Web site, redrockco.com.
“I thought I wasn’t going to make it,” said runner Bobbie Lyons, who participated in the half marathon alongside her husband, Manuel Lyons, Jr. “The last two miles really did me in; by mile 12, I was in tears. I started out with my husband, but he has a bad knee, so instead of two of us there was only one. In the end I was literally the last one to pass the
finish line.” Their daughters participated in the Youth Progressive Half Marathon.
The goal of the Red Mountain Half Marathon is to promote health and wellness by getting people into walking, running and doing marathons.
“It felt really good. I accomplished [something that had been] the most unthinkable [goal for me], and now I can put this on the list of crazy stuff
I’ve attempted and completed, like skydiving,” said Lyons about finishing the half marathon. “I try to get to the Salt River Fitness Center with my family to work out [regularly]. My next goal is to complete the PF Chang’s Half Marathon. We attempt
ed it a few years ago with no exercise prior [to the event] and we burned out by mile 10.5, so [I have my] fingers crossed [that] I can accomplish [it] and complete this next milestone.”