Plantigrade Racing

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35th Annual All-America City 10K Run Offers Chance for Runners to Win Big

Most people know a runner or are one themselves, and will agree that the runners in their lives will happily share stories of their last race — they are always competing in or training for one! The sport is not only a free way to get cardio exercise and enjoy our South Texas environment. When considering marathons, fun runs, 5- or 10-kilometer races and other dashes, running can bring people together to raise funds for a great cause. In the case of the annual Edinburg 10K, runners also have the chance to compete for large prizes and the pride that comes with winning a world-class race.

Edinburg will host the All-America City 10K for the 35th time Saturday, Feb. 4, 2017, with the race itself starting at 9 a.m. The streets of Edinburg provide runners with a “flat, fast out-and-back” 6.2 mile, certified race course. $30,000 in total prize money awards, several divisions and an easy-to-follow course ensure runners of all ages will compete against their peers. Trophies are awarded for the top three finishers in each age division and medals for everyone who finishes the race.

Aside from the 10K, two other races guarantee a fun time for the entire family. A Fun Run for all elementary students 8 years old or younger and anyone who is a beginner jogger begins at 11 a.m. and a Miracle Mile race is starting at  8 a.m. for runners of all ages who have special needs. Registered participants will receive an official T-shirt and a medal at the finish line.

Jose Esqueda, organizer of the Facebook page “RGV Running,” has been participating in the Edinburg race for the past four years. He started the page to spread the word about local running events after having difficulty finding them when he started running. Close to 5,000 likes strong, the page is a resource for the local community out there hitting the pavement. However, he says running is for everyone and it’s never too late to start getting in the habit.

“Start slow; don’t start out with the goal of running a marathon,” he says, “because you’ll burn yourself out and not like running anymore! It takes months to train for a marathon. Once you get the hang of it, you start adding more miles.”

Before he started a fitness program through work, Esqueda was not exceedingly active.

“The fitness program through my employer was going to be a couple of months, but I just kept up with it,” he says. “That really kick-started my health and got me to be active.”

From equipment to nutrition, to training plans and running form, there is a lot to learn about running. RGV Running is one start, but Esqueda says other runners are often a wealth of knowledge.

“Once you start meeting people and talking to them you learn a lot,” he says. Though he often runs alone, races bring everyone together to compete not only against each other, but against personal records.

“You try to compete with other people but the only true competition is yourself,” Esqueda says. “You know the time you can do and you want to beat that time.”

Runners interested in participating in the All-America City 10K can visit www.cityofedinburg.com for more information and to register. The deadline for registration is 8. P.m. Friday, Feb. 3, 2017.