Tag: runstrongrun

My First Half Marathon!

My First Half Marathon!

I’M OFFICIALLY A HALF MARATHONER! I couldn’t be more happy or proud of this fact! After running 115 miles during 8 weeks of training, I ran my “victory lap” at the Urban Cow Half Marathon with 13.1 miles!

In last week’s post, I told you how I was having some serious hamstring problems in my right leg. My 8 mile long run was cut down to 3.5 and all my efforts to release the tightness were unsuccessful. Thankfully, a few days before the race, I tried a lying down hamstring stretch and felt it release! I was excited but still worried about it affecting my performance at the race. I continued doing this stretch a few times a day along with my usual rolling and stretching.

Because I was part of the Moms Run This Town HERD (team) I was invited to a special, early VIP packet pickup! On Thursday, I headed down to Fleet Feet Sacramento for this event and it was fun getting first access to all the special apparel and goodies created for this race! Plus, I got to bump into my friend Lisa who was there to pick up packets for almost our whole MRTT chapter!

Here we are with Howdy the cow!

After getting my bib packet and stocking up on gels and hydration powder, it was time to rest up for the race. On Saturday, I gathered everything together and laid out my Flat Christa.

Sunday morning finally came and although I was nervous, I was so ready and excited! My dad and I rode down to Sacramento together while my husband and son were going to meet us later.

Walking up to the event, the first thing we saw was the big She/Moms Run This Town tent! 12 Sacramento area chapters were represented at this race! We gathered for this awesome group photo.

I also found some ladies from my chapter and we all walked around sharing our excitement for the race.

Lisa, Kitty, Francine, and Gail – just a few members of my awesome running tribe!

We made our way to the start line but stayed aside while the first wave of the half marathon started. The first wave was for runners who could complete the race in less than 2 hours. While we waited for the second wave to line up, my friend Stephanie surprised me! She wasn’t intending on running this half but joined at the last minute. I was so happy to see her and feel her support!

Follow Stephanie on Instagram! @runstrongrun

Wave 1 finally cleared out and our wave lined up. My MRTT ladies all stood together and exchanged “you got this!” cheers and then they sounded the horn. It was go time!

Lisa and I ran together for the first 7 miles or so. We had so much fun chatting and checking out all there was to see! Costumes – like a man in a multi-color spiky wig and yellow legwarmers and the people running in full cow costumes! How did they not pass out from heat stroke in those things? Live bands jamming every few miles – we would dance, cheer and clap! Sights – like the famous yellow Tower Bridge and the Sacramento River!

My legs started to feel really tired around the 7 mile mark. I blame too much rest trying to avoid aggravating my hamstring before the race. I told Lisa to go on ahead because I was going to take an extra walking break. At that point, I honestly thought I’d rest a little and catch back up to her. Unfortunately, my legs never recovered and I started feeling a lot of pain in my feet, particularly on the soles. Lisa slowly crept further and further into the distance until I didn’t see her anymore.

But it was fun while it lasted!

I was kicking myself for sure but tried to remember everyone’s advice to me to just have fun at my first half. I did walk quite a bit more the last half of the race because my feet were in serious pain. Around mile 10, I had that thought that I think most runners get during a race like this, “Why did I do this to myself?” There were also some thoughts like “How do people do FULL marathons?!” haha! I just kept pushing on the best I could.

Howdy greeted me at mile 10!

During the final mile, “Bad Romance” by Lady Gaga came on which ignited a small burst of energy that had me running more. I came around a corner and was met by this arch with a great cow pun and the excitement of knowing I only had a half mile to go.

That last half mile was quick, intermittent spurts of running – walking – running – walking. My feet were screaming stop but my will to reach the finish line kept me moving! I finally got to where the end was in sight and I pushed harder. Lisa had already finished and she came back to run me in. I sprinted as hard as I could and raised my arms in victory as I crossed the finish line with a time of 2:52!

Words can’t properly describe the feeling of accomplishment that washed over me. I was handed my awesome cowbell medal and then looked for my family. My dad found me first, gave me a big hug, and I started crying. While we were hugging, I saw my husband pushing my son up in the stroller with a big smile on his face. My son gave me a big kiss and my husband gave me a hug and said “You did it!” Seeing my family proud of me felt so good!

That’s Alex’s proud face

I went to the beer garden to enjoy my complimentary Lagunitas beer but, sadly, I had forgotten my I.D. My dad then told me he’d buy me a margarita at lunch. Thanks Dad!

I could barely walk so I sat down to change into my OOFOS recovery sandals. I took off my shoes and found one of my Pro Compression socks had a small spot of blood on it. I was cracking up and making jokes about being a “real” runner now. I took my socks off and found 9 blisters on my feet. This was weird because I didn’t get blisters on any of my training runs and I wasn’t wearing anything different. Also, my foot pain started at the 7 mile mark so it wasn’t because I was running further than I ever had. It’s a mystery.

We slowly shuffled back to the car and went to the Mexican restaurant El Papagayo. I wanted to give them a shout out because they have a whole page of vegan options on their menu AND their food is really good! Maybe it was because I had just run 13.1 miles, but I’m pretty sure I had the best margarita I’ve ever had there!

After lunch, we headed home and I prepared my first ever ice bath. I was scared and for good reason. It was terrible haha! I dunked my lower half in the water, lasted one whole second, said NOPE and got out. It was wayyyyy too cold! So I swapped it out for an epsom salt bath instead. That was much more relaxing!

On race day, I thought “I’m not doing another half for a long time!” The next day, I was looking up half marathons in Germany haha! It’s seriously an addiction! I’m not sure when my next half will be since it will be cold and snowy over there but I’m looking forward to the next round of training and the fun journey that will come with it!

10 Years

10 Years

This week was all about resting and planning my upcoming half marathon training! I can’t run but I can fantasize about running 😀 To prove how good I’ve been resting, here’s my weekly recap:

This is a photo I took on the way to Lake Tahoe! More about that coming up…

On Wednesday last week, my friend Stephanie (from runstrongrun.com!) invited Alex and I for a walk together.

We had a great 5 mile speed stroll and I loved catching up with her! We don’t get to do that very often. We were even twinning in our matching “I Run This State” shirts!

Later that day, my friend since 8th grade (AKA 17 years ago!) Michelle came to visit me! On Thursday, she kindly walked my final miles for July with me!

It felt great to finish my goal mileage for July!

I’m going to echo my posts from Facebook and Instagram a little bit right now because I think it’s important. I had to walk about half of these miles. As much as that sucks, I’m still so proud of them! I would rather have run them but guess what? It takes effort to get out of bed and get dressed and go walk too! A mile is a mile no matter how you get there. It’s better than not moving at all!

In last week’s post, I revealed my plan to walk out all my July miles as fast as possible and then rest. Once my miles were done, I started my 9 day rest period in style with a day trip to Lake Tahoe! Talk about relaxing 🙂

This was my first time since childhood wearing a swimsuit in public. I had a split second of insecurity before walking down to the water where everyone could see but I chose to not care what anybody thought of my legs because they are amazing whether they look it or not! I’m telling you, loving your body is so much better than hating it. It’s so freeing!

Alex LOVED the beach!

I’ve been resting, icing my shin, and stretching a lot in between mom duties the rest of the week. I’ll be going on my first run in almost a month this Saturday at the Fit Approach EMPOWER Race 5k! After that, next Monday, my husband, my son, and I will be heading to Napa! Chris and I are celebrating our 10th wedding anniversary on August 13th so we planned a few days in beautiful wine country.

Our wedding day 10 years ago.

While in Napa, I’ll officially be starting my Urban Cow Half Marathon training!

There is a river trail right next to where we’re staying so I’m hoping that’s a good trail to run on! If not, there’s also a gym with treadmills (not as exciting of an idea…) Once I’m back home, I’m excited to get back to running with my Moms Run This Town ladies. I’m also nervously excited to do some cross training in the form of swimming! I’ve never swum as exercise but I love swimming so I’m excited 🙂

What are your goals this week? I’m going on vacay so mine is to enjoy Napa! I’m very excited to start running again but also really nervous about these shin splints not really being gone. So aside from enjoying our vacation, I’ll be listening to my body and easing back into exercise and training. Have a wonderful week!

Race Recap – Women’s Fitness Festival 5k

Race Recap – Women’s Fitness Festival 5k

I had been patiently waiting for this race to come around. I was excited because I had heard it was a pretty huge event and it was called Women’s Fitness Festival. I love female empowerment and women supporting each other so I was ready to be surrounded by that kind of energy! Added bonus: my good running friend Stephanie from runstrongrun.com was running the 10k! I always love getting the chance to meet up with her, especially at races.

This event was created by Fleet Feet Sac and supports a very important cause. The proceeds benefit a local program called WEAVE (Women Escaping A Violent Environment) that helps women suffering from domestic abuse and sexual assault. You can read more about this program here. The Women’s Fitness Festival also has free health screenings for all participants and provides awareness and education on women’s health!

The night before the event, I made my shirt and laid out my #FlatMe per my usual pre-race tradition!

I got up at 4 A.M. to get ready. First things first? Coffee. I sipped it while I got dressed. This was my first time trying out Pro Compression socks. I looked in the mirror and felt a little silly wearing such tall socks but I think they are so cute so I was just gonna roll with it. I asked my husband Chris “How do I look?” and he let out a chuckle. He said I looked like a caricature of myself and that I looked cute haha!

Once everything was together, I hopped in the car at 5:30 for the trek to Sacramento. I feel like I beat the crowd heading down that early because I was able to park right across the street from the capitol building. Speaking of which, what a great backdrop to a race!

I slowly made my way over toward the event while enjoying the scenery and cool morning air. Then I met up with Stephanie!

She was hanging out with her awesome #runsquad of 6 other women! I introduced myself and we chatted while waiting for start time. Everyone was sharing their goals for the race and Stephanie asked what mine was. I told her that I just wanted to have fun and enjoy my run with no expectations. She responded “You’re going to set a PR. It’s just what you do!”

Eventually we realized we were all wearing Pro Compression socks and needed an obligatory sock circle photo!

We honestly did not plan this haha

After that we headed for the Start line!

This photo captures the spirit of this event. Over 4,000 amazing, strong women came together to celebrate each other and our love of running!

This was my first race where they had different pace times divided up. A few of us stood together near the 10:00 min/mile sign.

I knew I couldn’t run a 10:00 mile for 3 miles but I decided I wasn’t going to let the pacer out of my sight. This race was women only but the pacers were mostly men. They dressed the part and paced in drag! 😀

I figured if I could still see him, maybe I would get that PR Stephanie was predicting.

The cute girl in the pink glasses to the right of me is Alandrea AKA Mrs.motherrunner on Instagram! Go follow her!

The race announcer did our countdown and we all slowly shuffled through the Start line. It was very crowded so it took a while for everyone to get a little breathing room. Once we did, Stephanie and the other ladies took off like the speedy runners they are and I just kept my eyes on that 10:00 pace sign.

Like every race, I wanted to go fast but told myself go slow. It’s kind of funny how hard it is to do that! The course took us in a loop through the city streets. On almost every corner, there would be a big group of people, most of which were in costumes or had big signs cheering us on! At one point, I heard a girl on the phone telling her mom “I’m behind the girl with the black and white tube socks.” haha!

While I really enjoyed myself during this race, I ran harder than I had ever run. I only took a few very short (we’re talking less than 15 seconds) walking breaks. That last mile was tough but I could see us getting closer and closer to the capitol and that helped me push myself. I sprinted through the finish line and then I was so relieved when it was over! I have proof…look at this picture!

There were firemen waiting with our completion medals which I thought was really cool! After being handed my medal, someone handed me a water bottle and I found a grassy spot to sit and rest for a minute. After I hydrated and caught my breath, I headed for the Results laptops to check my time. Stephanie had called it. She had gotten in my head and manifested a new personal record for me! At 32:35, I had run this race a whole minute and a half faster than my previous PR set a only month before.

After reading my results, I decided to hit some booths before the crowd got too big. I loved being able to shop for running apparel and accessories after my race! I went straight to the giant Fleet Feet Sports Asics tent and got myself a running tank. Then I saw the Whole Foods tent across the street and walked that way. That’s when I bumped into a few of Stephanie’s friends and we decided to eat all together. We were served the tastiest granola I’ve ever had on top of some greek yogurt with fresh fruit on the side. For the next half hour, I got to know these ladies a little bit and they were so wonderful! I was just a mutual friend of Stephanie’s but they were taking the time to ask about me and share about themselves. They were incredibly nice and interesting women and it was so refreshing getting to know them!

After devouring that seriously delicious granola and seeing a few more booths, we were finally ready for our ultimate race reward: The Mimosa Garden.

Just imagine the sound of angels singing here

We went through the line, got our drinks, and found a table where we continued to enjoy each other’s company.

The mimosa was pretty small but it was SO YUMMY. I was bummed I couldn’t have another!

Stephanie had been enjoying the booths but caught up to us when we finished our drinks. We had to get a picture together with our beautiful medals.

Alas, it was time to part ways. Chris and Alex were waiting for me at home. I told everyone how nice it was to meet them all, said goodbye, and headed home. Also, my socks? They were great! My legs didn’t burn and my toes didn’t go numb. These were issues I’d been having when running 3 or more miles. They’re really comfortable too, not constricting! I always wear them on longer runs now!

I recommend this race to all women! If you can’t attend this race, I encourage you to find an all-women race near you! I absolutely loved participating in an event that celebrates females. I’ll be moving to Germany at the end of this year so unfortunately I won’t be able to attend this race again. It’s a huge bummer! So I need you all to go for me so I can live vicariously 😀

Getting Over Myself

Getting Over Myself

I don’t know why, but I’m not super enthused with how this week went. It wasn’t bad but it wasn’t particularly good either. When I sat down to write this post yesterday, my heart just wasn’t in it and I honestly planned to skip posting anything new for the week. However, I went for a run with Stephanie (RunStrongRun) this morning and told her all about it. Talking it out with her helped me talk myself into posting anyway.

I just needed to get over myself, suck it up, and own up to what went wrong this week.

Let’s start with Monday. I didn’t run because we spent the day in San Francisco with my dad. I had a “when in Rome” slip and ate a customized ice cream sandwich at The Baked Bear. It was soooo goooood!

White chocolate macadamia nut cookies filled with salted caramel fudge ice cream and topped with warm caramel sauce. Delicious to the extreme.

Monday had been the last day of the Sweating Awesome Facebook Accountability Group. So naturally, I ate terribly on Tuesday 🙂 It was my dad’s last day in town so we had to go to our favorite local taqueria for lunch.

We also always have sushi together when he’s in town so I had a giant Dragon Roll and some pot stickers for dinner.

I felt okay with these choices because I had been really disciplined for 2 weeks and I was ready to continue eating healthy after my dad left town. And I did… and I ran my butt off… and I didn’t lose any weight. So I am living proof that losing weight is more about what you eat than how much you work out.

Here’s the rundown of my workouts this week:

So…not much else to say except I plan to do better this week! I might be at a point in my weight loss where I can only have a cheat meal once or twice a month instead of every week. Maybe some people would stop having cheat meals altogether but they seriously keep me sane! Plus, having one big special cheat keeps me from giving in to lots of little cheats. I just stay balanced better this way.

This Sunday will be the Women’s Fitness Festival 5k in Sacramento! I’ve been told it’s a huge race so I’m excited to see the biggest crowd I’ve ever experienced at a running event!

I’m also starting this challenge in the month of June!

Here is a link to the group on Facebook. You walk or run at least 1 mile every day for 30 days. I think it’s a great motivator to get out and get moving no matter your fitness level! Please take the link and join us!

What are your plans this week or weekend? Comment below! Have a great one! 🙂

Race Recap – Run Around the Rice 5k

Race Recap – Run Around the Rice 5k

I had debated for a few weeks whether I should participate in this race or not. I knew my dad would be in town, it was almost an hour drive away, and I had a 19 month old to plan around. My running friend Kelsey started telling me I needed to do it because she and her friend Katja were going. Then a few days later, I got a text from Stephanie (RunStrongRun) saying I should go because she was doing the 10k. I finally caved under the peer pressure 😀 I asked my dad if he’d like to attend and he said yes so I registered for the race. I did think it would be pretty cool for him to see me doing my thing 🙂

As usual, I had to do my ritual flat Christa photo the night before.

Setting these up is almost as fun as the race.

I went to bed early to get plenty of rest. I woke up and had my coffee and got ready. I had an English muffin, banana, and cherries for breakfast.

My dad and I made the drive out to Richvale, CA. It was just fields and fields of rice paddies which I find pretty and peaceful. We parked and started walking down the gravel road toward the event. We walked up right as the 10k runners were taking off! I saw Stephanie and Kelsey running away among the group.

It was a small event so there weren’t many booths so my dad and I just chatted, took photos, and waited for the 5k to start.

 About 10 minutes before run time, the 5k runners started getting in place at the starting line.

I shook out my legs, started my running playlist, and got my Nike+ running app ready to go.

8:30 A.M. came and it was 3…2…1… START!

Something I noticed almost immediately was how hot it was. I assumed a morning race would be nice and cool but that wasn’t the case.

The first half mile or so was on gravel road. I was concentrating on pacing myself and not taking off too fast at the beginning. This was especially important since we were obviously going to be running on unpaved terrain and it was going to be harder than a normal run. After a while, we turned right and started on a grass and dirt trail that lasted most of the race. The paddies around us were serene and I was enjoying the nature. It was a really pretty run!

Nike+ chimed in at mile 1 with my time of 10:39. I was surprised that I had gone that fast since I was trying to go slower but I guess the race adrenaline was making me speedy anyway. I was feeling good and this time had me excited that I might get another new PR.

But then came mile 2.

I had made a huge mistake. I had eaten that big breakfast instead of my usual Clif Bar. Stomach cramps hit me hard. I tried to power through them at first but it made them worse. I had to walk almost the whole second mile. I kept trying to run when it would subside but they would come right back. I was upset. I didn’t know if the cramps were going to stop, I hate walking during a race, and my chance at a PR was crushed. My morale went out the window.

Around the mile 3 starting point, there was a station of people cheering and one of them was holding a sign that said “Just keep running!” It gave me motivation to try to run again. The stomach cramps stayed at a minimum the rest of the race but now I was dealing with other issues. I was hot, worn out and my calves were burning from running on the trail. I was able to run a lot more of the third mile but I still had to take some walking breaks. My dad saw me struggling and texted me the sweetest thing!

I was mentally defeated, burning up, dehydrated, and my left foot was getting sharp pains if I landed on the rocks a certain way. Despite all this, once I saw the finish line, I wouldn’t let myself stop running.

Notice the heat blurs behind me

A big part of what kept me going was knowing my dad was watching. I found the strength to push through, keep running, and I even sprinted at the very end.

This was the hardest race I’ve run so I was just relieved that it was over! I paced around catching my breath and my dad led me to a literal trough filled with water bottles haha. I told him about all the trouble I was having and he told me he was proud of me 🙂 When I felt less like I was dying, I made it to the Results laptop to check my time. As expected, I hadn’t set a new PR but I was shocked to see that I had placed 2nd in the Female 30-39 group! I had never placed in a race before so I was really excited!

After that, we found Stephanie and said hello! She also placed 2nd in her age group for the 10k! We posed together with our finisher medals.

Then I heard “Christa Christa!” and Kelsey and her friend Katja had found us. This was Kelsey’s first 10k! Katja actually finished as the #1 female overall for the 5k. Great accomplishments all around!

Me, Kelsey, and Katja!

Instead of medals, they handed out goodie bags for all of the finishers. What was inside? Rice of course!

I mean…why WOULDN’T you win rice at the Run Around the Rice 5k/10k?

The day came to a close with a crop duster flying right over us!

In spite of how bad I felt during the race, overall it was a great time! I got some experience with challenges I hadn’t faced before so I can be more prepared in future events. I’m glad my friends talked me into it and that my dad got to be there! Every race just makes me want to participate in more. I love the challenge, the satisfaction of accomplishment, and most of all, the community and camaraderie! The people make it a hundred times more fun.

Be sure to take a look at my races page and furthermore, sign up for some and join me!

Race Recap -Sutter Buttes Spirit Mountain Run 5k

Race Recap -Sutter Buttes Spirit Mountain Run 5k

All week I had been preparing to run in the world’s smallest mountain range, the Sutter Buttes! I knew this was a bigger race so I wanted to have realistic expectations. Instead of setting my sights on a medal, I set my goal to be a new personal record time for 3.1 miles. My husband told me that his best run times come after resting for 3 or 4 days. I wanted to test his theory but I’m trying to lose weight here so I couldn’t convince myself to put my feet up for more than 1 day! So Friday I took a time out. Honestly, I felt restless all morning. I usually only take a rest day after an intense workout the day before. I had been taking it pretty easy most of the week to preserve my legs and knee that has still been bothering me so this wasn’t the case. I had some errands to run in the afternoon so I was able to at least get rid of some energy.

I went to New Earth Market (AKA my favorite health food store) that evening to pick up my bib packet. It was exciting! The pickup table was full of people rushing back and forth grabbing t-shirts and bags. Everyone was cheery and having fun with it. A woman behind the table asked for my name and found me on the list. She asked another lady to grab a shirt for me and while we waited, she was asking me if I was excited and what distance I was running. She was just so friendly and all that excitement around the table just made me feel even more enthusiastic about the race!

The bib packet was this great reusable bag filled with tons of swag!

I had never received such a nice bag of goodies for a race before. It’s usually just a ziploc with your shirt and bib so this was a special surprise!

That night, I got all my things together, ready to go. I took my #flatme picture which, I have to say, is a really fun little pre-race tradition!

I tried to get to bed at 9 P.M. to get plenty of sleep but I didn’t make it until close to 10. At 3 A.M. my son woke up crying because he’s currently teething. I waited about 5 minutes to see if he would fall back asleep but he didn’t so I got up. I had to use the bathroom before I went to check on him but while I was doing that, he did end up falling asleep again. Good for him but bad for me haha! I laid back in bed and tried to sleep but my mind started shuffling through everything I was going to be doing that day. I gave up on sleep by 3:30 and decided to make the most of my time.

I double-checked that everything was ready to go. I got dressed and put on some makeup which might be silly but I knew I’d be taking a lot of pictures for Instagram. Then I had some coffee and breakfast.

Fried egg, canteloupe, and strawberries

After breakfast, I did some really relaxing stretching and used the foam roller on my legs. I wasn’t doing yoga but I felt like it! I was just so zen and I felt really ready to take on the day.

My good friend Katharine (who you may remember from my last 5k recap) came over to babysit and she was kind enough to snap a photo of me in the back yard.

After that, I was off! I drove about a half hour up to Sutter, CA. I went ahead and ate my Clif Bar on the drive so that I wouldn’t be hungry during my run. They are seriously the perfect race fuel.

I got to the venue pretty early so there was no crowd. I was able to go around and take some photos without feeling too dorky.

I couldn’t believe how much colder it was than it had been outside my house. It’s only 9 feet higher in elevation but I was freezing without a jacket. I tried to keep moving and survive until the race.

Shortly before the half marathon was going to start, I bumped into my new runner friend Stephanie of RunStrongRun!

I complimented her cute neon outfit (seriously, she is always perfectly runmatchy!) we had a quick catch up, wished each other luck, and she got in line to do the half. That’s when the start line collapsed under the pressure of the impending 13.1 miles.

Race organizers quickly re-inflated the poor thing, the half marathon runners took off and those of us doing the 5k and 10k started to gather next. I got my running playlist on Spotify started and shook out my nerves while we waited. I looked up and saw somebody waving at me. It was my former running instructor, Crystal! This is the trainer who patiently walked with me on my first run ever and told me not to stop trying (mentioned in this post!) I told her that I started this blog and wrote about her but before we could finish our conversation, we got the signal to start our race!

I learned my lesson from my last 5k and controlled my momentum. The excitement of the race definitely made me want to take off full speed at the start. This time, I took deep breaths, slowed down a bit, and reminded myself of the debacle of my poor pacing last race. Once I did that, everything clicked and I felt great.

This is definitely the prettiest place I’ve run so far. We passed a farm during the first half mile and I saw…and smelled…some sheep. Not the best when you’re trying to breathe in your nose and out your mouth to keep your heart rate down haha! Seriously though, I was just really enjoying myself looking at the hills and breathing the mostly fresh air!

I reached the 1.5 mile mark where there was a water station so I grabbed a cup. I took a couple of the fastest swigs ever, threw the cup in the trash, and turned around to head back in a hurry. Water sloshed on my cheek and chin and when I turned around, there was a photographer there taking my picture! I tried to quickly wipe my face while running but I think she got quite the gem of a photo.

I was pretty pleased at this point with the fact that my run back was going just as well as my first half. Again, my nike+ running app had failed me so I didn’t know my pace but at least this time I knew how far I had gone thanks to the turnaround.

At what I assume was about the 2.5 mile mark, I was starting to lose a little steam. I was focusing on my breathing, putting one foot in front of the other, and envisioning the finish line. I passed a few people walking and then HUMBLE by Kendrick Lamar came on my playlist. It was exactly the song I needed to get my steam back. It’s my current favorite running song so I got really excited! Too excited. I took a screenshot to remember the song that was firing me up for the final stretch of my race, fumbled my phone, and dropped it. Oops. It probably only cost me 4 or 5 seconds but I was trying for a PR so I was worried this would keep that from happening. Note to self: leave your phone in your SPIbelt. Or keep calm when hearing Kendrick Lamar. Yeah I probably won’t do either.

I kicked my pace up a notch after the phone fiasco and made it to the finish line! After catching my breath, I found Crystal again and finished telling her how thankful I am that she encouraged me to keep running last year. She had a hand in changing my life!

After we talked, I found the results laptops to check my time. I was thrilled to find I had indeed achieved my goal of a new PR. I beat my old record of 34:31 and ran it in 33:55! Not a huge difference but hey, I met my goal and improved!

It was such a great race experience from picking up my bib until the end. I’ve even decided that as long as I’m able, I’m going to try for the half marathon next year! It would be an excellent challenge and I’d get to see more of the Sutter Buttes mountains in all their glory.

Are you training for a race right now? I’d love to hear about what race you’re doing and what your goals are. Comment below! Also take a gander at my Races page and sign up to run with me!

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