miniMarathon runners all shook up by Running Elvi

miniMarathon runners all shook up by Running Elvi

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Long flowing strides. 
Thirteen miles of aero-dynamic dynamite.
The best runners in the world, with dazzle and flare.
The jam-packed Derby Festival miniMarathon is all about speed and grace.
And Graceland.
The Running Elvi are the real rock stars.
It's now or never, so I bought an Elvis outfit and joined them.

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The Running Elvi have been a legal performance-enhancing drug for marathoners for decades.

"Why pick Elvis?" I asked Running Elvi member Mike Coffey.
"Best dead celebrity going at the time 20 years ago," he said.

It's hard to run when everyone wants a picture, and it's harder to take running selfies with a hard headed woman.

"You want a picture with Elvis?" I asked while running.
"Yes," she said. "I'm a huge Elvis fan."
"Your favorite Elvis song?" I asked.
"Oh Suspicious Minds hands down," she said.

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The Running Elvi get the crowd all shook up without a lot of Elvis in their baby stroller boom box.

"Elvis songs are too short, can't get two hours out of Elvis songs," Coffey said.

"It's the worst parade ever if we're not here," he added.

"So what's going through your mind when you see Elvis running?" I asked a runner.
"Either I'm in the after-life or it was all a big lie," she said.

Several miles in, we find another running Elvis.

"Aree you a random Elvis or part of the running Elvi?" I asked John Horton.
"I'm 69. I've run with them a number of years, but I'm 69 and just a little show for you guys," he said.

Horton just finished his 50th marathon in 50 states.

"I'm learning the wig is hot. I see you don't have a wig on?" I said.
"That's one of the keys, dress as little as you can," he said.

"Have you been training correctly Elvis?" I asked Coffey.
"I'm sufficiently under-trained," he said, laughing.

"If it rains, look out, it's gonna be a lot of weight," said one of the runners.

On cue, a hard Kentucky rain began, that didn't stop the paparazzi from continuing to take pictures and videos of us.
As we entered Churchill downs, we added an Elvis, then we lost an Elvis, so we were down to two Elvi, one way ahead and one way behind. As the song we were playing at the time says: "We're caught in a trap."
Everything on me was wet, except my wig. It was starting to repel water, much like a built-in umbrella.

By mile 10, our lost Elvi returned to sender, and we magically reunited.

"What's wettest on you Hellvis?" I asked.
"This cape," he said. "It's a 30 pound cape."
Down the stretch, fading runners found new energy sprinting ahead to snap pictures.
"You know who I feel sorry for?" I asked Coffey, "the guys we pass."
"Some guys in jumpsuits just beat me," he said laughing.

"Watch out for those damn Elvi," said Running Elvi member John Wheeler, "you try to get away from them, they catch up to you. Slow down, they pass, can't get away from them."

As we crossed the finish line in the driving rain, I asked the man handing out race medals how many Elvi have crossed so far.
"You're the first," he said.
"Think we'll be the last?" I asked.
"Yes," he said.

I've lived a life that's full.
I did it my way.
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