The world’s fastest medical physicist?
17:19 Tuesday CT: At 5.45 this morning (thank goodness for jet lag!), early-rising locals were treated to the unusual sight of a large gathering of shorts-and-T-shirt clad medical physicists, exhibitors and one journalist in Minneapolis’ Boom Island Park. Today was the annual AAPM/Gammex 5k run, which each year sees hundreds of delegates braving an early start and punishing heat in search of that elusive personal best.
Heat certainly was a feature of this year’s run. The thermometer was showing 75°F as we pounded past, but the humidity made it feel considerably hotter. Our very own runner extraordinaire, Simon Harris, reckoned that this year’s temperatures trumped even those suffered by last year’s competitors in Orlando, FL. Perhaps this is why, out of approximately 230 people who registered for the run, only 155 actually turned up.
The conditions didn’t seem to hamper race winner Tim Szczykutowicz too much. Making his debut at this event, the physics student from the University at Buffalo (New York, NY) completed the 5k in 18 minutes 43 seconds, well ahead of his quickest competition. What’s more, rumour has it that this trifling distance didn’t tire him out enough, so he planned to run the extra couple of kilometres back to his hotel. medicalphysicsweb’s Tami Freeman asked him how it felt to win: “Very good,” said Tim.
All in all, the medicalphysicsweb contingent didn’t do too badly. Physics in Medicine and Biology publisher Simon Harris came 15th, with a time of 23:30. “Never again,” said AAPM meeting regular Simon while cooling down in the park afterwards. “Mind you, I said that after the race last year!” My effort of 27:50 yielded 40th place - making me not only the fifth woman across the line, but also faster than medicalphysicsweb editor Joe McEntee, who competed in the event last year. (That’s enough self-congratulatory reporting - JM)
The full results are available at the Gammex booth, and will be put up on the Gammex website shortly.