Lakeville Pan-O-Prog 4 Mile Race (or Accidental Biathlon)

Greetings, folks. Saturday got off to an interesting start at about 4:30 AM when the alarm went off. Why such an ungodly hour?

Well, I decided to participate in the Lakeville Pan-O-Prog 4 mile run on Saturday morning. It was a work thing. They want us all to be more active, so that we can be more productive and happy people and live healthier, happier lives, but more importantly, so that we can all get 10% off our health insurance premiums during 2013. To do that, we have to participate in one of any several approved “wellness” events, the Lakeville Pan-O-Prog 4-mile run being one of them.

Apparently, riding a bicycle to and from work 8 miles each way every day year-round didn’t make the list of approved “wellness” activities. But signing up for a 4-mile run did (actually, I probably could have easily petitioned the HR department to count the bike riding, but I don’t mind a little encouragement to get out and jog a bit more).

The race started at 7:45 AM, but I needed to register by 7:00, which would mean leaving the house at 6:30 or so to drive there. And I’m such a darling and loving husband and father that I couldn’t stand the thought of waking my dear wife and daughter so early in the morning. So SOLUTION: I’ll ride a bike. It’s only 28 miles so google maps says I need to leave at 4:30 AM.

OK. No problem.

But first off, WTF is “Pan-O-Prog”? Sounds like a skillet of whale lard or something. It’s short for “Panorama of Progress”, which is a mouthful. I understand their desire to abbreviate the name a bit, but I’m not sure “Pan-O-Prog” was the best option. How about just “POP”?

Anyway, mostly it was just an excuse to go for an early-morning solo bike ride, since I don’t get the chance to do that too often anymore.

Part of my route took me on a dirt path through the Minnesota River Valley Wildlife Refuge, which I wanted to capture on camera for you. I got a kick out of this photo, because it looks like something out of a horror movie.

Bad photography? Or fatigue-induced hallucination? I report. You decide.

This is the scene where a I realize that I’ve been pricked in the back of the neck by a poison tipped dart. The world starts swirling, vision blurs. The next thing I know I wake only to discover that I’ve been stripped naked strapped to a wooden stake in the ground while natives dance around the fire they will ultimately use to cook me. Or I find myself strapped to a metal hard-back chair in the middle of an empty warehouse somewhere in siberia while scar-faced russians prepare to beat me with rusty steel pipes.

Or maybe I’m just a lousy photographer and can’t be bothered to stop cycling while I take a photo.

Anyway, the race went fine. Legs were a bit tired, but I don’t think it slowed me down much. Results below:


Distance: 4 miles
Time: 29:03
Pace: 7:16

And since this is the first time I’ve ever run a 4-mile race, this is also a new personal record!


6 thoughts on “Lakeville Pan-O-Prog 4 Mile Race (or Accidental Biathlon)”

  1. I grew up in Lakeville with Pan-O-Prog. It was something that we looked forward to every year. What a silly name!

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