Branford Road Race. The Recap

Nothing like a 5-Miler at 10:15am on a Sunday in the middle of June to get the sweat pouring. Hello Branford Road Race! This race is usually like running around the inside of a sauna, only with a bunch of water stops and adoring spectators. However, I am happy to report this past Sunday- Father’s Day- was pleasantly cloudy for our late morning start. And thank god for that. It was Tina’s inaugural Branford Road Race. I however, was suffering from a mild grade hangover and what can only be described as alcohol induced gastritis (Or, cholera. Take your pick.) As a result, I was dreading this year’s Branford Road Race, clouds and all.


Branford, like several towns on the Connecticut Shoreline, has a beautiful town green. Think quintessential New England- white churches, Town Hall, an expanse of green with benches and paths and kids and dogs and DAILY LIFE! It’s a vibrant public space. I love Town Greens. The Race coincides with the Branford Festival which really showcases The Community itself (and includes fried dough- BONUS!) The Road Race has been a 5 year tradition for me. I was thrilled Tina was going to be a part of it. Although with a 10:15am start?

Tina: {Slight Boston accent} 10:15? Christ. That’s almost my bed time.
Colby: {Yanks out yurbuds, dissolves into laughter}

I love T-Bone.

We grab her bib, stretch, hide her swag in a bush and amble off to the start. There’s the usual pre- race announcements followed by the start of the Health Walk.

Tina: {Slight Boston accent} The walkers go first? We’re gonna trample ’em. Honest.
Colby: Man. My stomach is AWFUL. {Does not dissolve into laughter of any sort}

National anthem. Good luck! Run fast! And GO! We’re off. Great start! I’m behind Tina and we are cruising. My goal is to keep her in my sight and ignore my sour belly. Amazingly, there are no walkers trampled. (I believe they actually banged a left. We ran straight. Crisis averted.)

Before you know it we’re running beside the Long Island Sound and approaching mile 3 through beautiful Pine Orchard. And then. It hits me. Pain. My mouth waters. I get goose bumps. (P.S. It’s 80 degrees.) My. Stomach. There is an angry Spaniard in my gut swilling Albariño, wolfing down piping hot paella and swearing like a pirate. He is NOT a runner. Or happy. He wants out.

Oh. My. God.
I’m gonna Uta Pippig My Pants.
I can’t.
I won’t.

I’m in a panic.

I slow slightly. I breathe deeply. Get it together Colby.
The Pippig will pass. The Pippig will pass. The Pippig will pass…
I chant quietly.

It does.

I’m not sure how, but I’ve managed to disarm the Angry Albariño Swilling Spaniard by sheer willpower. Thank. God.

Mile 4. I can’t see Tina but I’m back in the game! And considering I almost had a complete gastric meltdown a mile ago, I’m feeling pretty good. Actually. I’m proud of myself. Mind controls the body. (I’m living proof!) I finish with dignity. As does Tina. (We also finish in the top 10% of our age group. Not bad!) We find each other, high five, laugh about my Pippig and toast with Albariño water. We hang around for a bit chit chatting with Tina’s wonderful family on the green. The sun peeks out. I am happy. There’s nothing like running a race with your best friend on a Sunday in June.

A race well run.




8 thoughts on “Branford Road Race. The Recap

  1. I was really thinking that you were about to run into the bushes…kind of disappointed but happy that you avoided it. Running dehydrated (a nice way to say hungover) is no fun, do able but not fun!

  2. Oh my gosh, dammit Colby, it hurts too much to laugh with this incision!!!! There is NOTHING worse than having a gastric emergency during a race. Nothing. So happy you managed to mind-over-matter your stomach and finish in the top 10%. Kudos!

    • Grab a pillow! Put it on your belly and laugh away! I hope all is healing well. There is NOTHING worse than being hit with some sort of hideous dysentery during a race. Thankfully everything ended on a happy note! Phew.

      Sending you healing thoughts!

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