Borrego to mark return to racing in Atalanta 5K

by | Nov 7, 2006 | News Articles

Fit to be Tied Column
November 7, 2006
From the Pueblo Chieftain
by Gary Franchi GaryFranchi

Borrego to mark return to racing in Atalanta 5K

Emily Borrego It’ll be with a different mind-set that Emily Borrego resumes her racing career Saturday in the Atalanta Women’s 5K Run/Walk at Pueblo’s City Park.

A year ago, Borrego successfully defended her overall first-place finish from the previous year when she sped to a 21:08 time. A month later, she ran the Rock Canyon Half-Marathon in an hour and 37 minutes.

She hasn’t run a race since then.

Changing residences and tackling home remodeling can change one’s life. Competitive burnout produces its own training modifications. And being an online math teacher is a time commitment, too.

The result for Borrego was a year in which she trained less and with little intensity and put more focus on the housing projects and enjoying her family time. With her and her husband, Rick, having sons who are 3 and 6 years of age, the change in direction was a good thing for Borrego.

Hence, she isn’t going into Saturday’s 9 a.m. Atalanta race with any grandiose expectations. Instead of running in the low-21 minutes as she did in the past two Atalantas, this time her goal is more modest.

“My goal is to break 22 minutes if I can,” the 38-year-old California native said recently, noting that somewhere around 21:40 would be quite an achievement considering her level of training.

It’s not like Borrego has stopped training. She still does short runs a couple of times a week and takes a spinning class three times a week at the YMCA. But the high-level plain she had been on previously — when she was also swimming, doing triathlons, qualifying for the Boston Marathon and winning her age division in most races – is a memory.

Her reasons for picking the Atalanta 5K for her return to competitive racing are simple – she likes the race, its homemade awards (bowls made by Kathie Arwood) and the special apparel item that each entrant receives (this year it’s a navy hooded shirt. Plus, the race course goes right by her Aberdeen home.

In addition, the first-place finisher in each age group will be given a handmade beaded zipper pull, and the overall winner of both the walk and the run will receive a hand-made beaded necklace.

The Atalanta is a female-only race for women and girls of all ability levels, from the novice to the veteran. The course has a loop around City Park and a segment through Aberdeen and on a dirt road near the River Trail.

Entry forms for the race are available at the Puebo YMCA and the Gold Dust Saloon, and race-day registration at the City Park Pavilion will begin at 7:30 a.m. An entry form also is available on the Southern Colorado Runners’ website under the “Calendar” link.


The Jingle Bell Run will return to Pueblo on Nov. 25 following a several-year hiatus and, as in the past, it is affiliated with the Parade of Lights in the Union Avenue Historic District. It has been resurrected as a 2.2-mile fun run with no finish times and no awards but with a couple of nice perks – the chance to run the annual Parade of Lights route in front of a big crowd of spectators and free entry into a post-run party at the SRDA featuring hors d’oeuvres furnished by Texas Roadhouse. To contribute to the festive evening, participants are urged to wear lights and jingle bells, and there will be awards for best use of lights and most creative use of bells. Registration will take place from 4 to 5 p.m., with the run starting at 5 o’clock. The Parade is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. There is a low entry fee for the fun run, and T-shirts will be available for $8.

In case you haven’t been checking the results sheets lately, the Pueblo area has a new elite competitor. Paul Murphy, 38, who moved to the area from Fort Collins with a job change this past summer, has been gradually whipping himself into top running form now that the dust from the move has settled. Murphy was the first finisher in the recent Hot to Trot and Hustle for Russell local 5K races. His last two race times were 17:35 in a 5K in Fort Collins and a 17:27 in the Hustle for Russell, where he was able to hold off former Puebloan Kyle Reno for first-place overall honors. Murphy is a multi-sporter who will probably be heard from in triathlon circles next year.


The water in Cañon City must contain some ingredient that gives the body extra endurance. Cañon attorney Sam McClure, 53, resumed his marathoning in October by finishing the Portland Marathon in 4:12 and the Chicago Marathon in 4:21. He’s run five marathons this year. Meanwhile, Marv Bradley, 67, annexed his13th marathon of 2006 by finishing the Des Moines (Iowa) 26.2-miler in 4:15.

Upcoming Pueblo-area races

• Saturday – Atalanta Women’s 5K, run/walk, 9 a.m., Pueblo City Park (564-9303).
• Nov. 25 – Temple Canyon Run, 4M, 9 a.m., Cañon City (784-6514).
• Nov. 25 – Jingle Bell Fun Run, 2.2M, 5 p.m., 230 S. Union Ave. (251-3189).
• Dec. 2 – Rock Canyon Half-Marathon, 9 a.m., Pueblo City Park (564-9303).

Send comments and fitness information to Gary Franchi via e-mail at