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Lilac 10K Victory!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

I can't believe that I have kept this up for so long. Running. Exercising. Eating well. In the past I always got to a place where I thought I was content and then gave up the healthy habits. I've been going strong for 2 1/2 years now, and I don't look at it any different than living day to day. I truly have changed my entire lifestyle, and I don't see how I could ever go back to living the way I used to.

This spring was huge for me because it was the second year that I have been running. So I signed up for all of the same races that I did last year so I could see how I could compare. It's amazing to see how much you can improve. The 10K was the one that I was most anxious about last year, and I was excited to see how I did this year.

The day before the race was the day I was scheduled to sub for Zumba, and I was SO NERVOUS. All of my energy from Wednesday to Saturday morning was spent on practicing for class, so I didn't have a chance to be freaking out about the race. When I got to class on Saturday morning, I was SO NERVOUS. Thank goodness no one could tell. I smiled and started class on time, and once the music started playing, all the butterflies went away and I just danced. It went better than I could have hoped for! I want to start choreographing my own dances now for when I sub in August, so I can show everyone a few of my own moves!

My fiance had his bowling banquet that day, and it was a BEAUTIFUL day. The only had it hadn't rained in over a week. So we spent the day there, relaxing and then I went out with some friends at night and had a few beers and we shared a little bit of not-so-good-for-you bar food.

Now, let me tell you.... I have some superstitions about the night before race day, race day morning, etc... (I'm sure most people do). I have learned that you NEVER wear the t-shirt of the race before you run it, I always eat the same thing before the race, and I tend to eat the same thing after the race as well. For every SINGLE race I've ran, I always have pizza the night before. Plain old cheese pizza. I usually make it myself with a delicious whole wheat crust and fresh buffalo mozzarella... YUM.

Not this time!!!!!! This time I had french fries, some nachos and BEER, people. Beer is carbs, right? Haha. I also stayed out until midnight. Then when I got home I couldn't sleep, so I didn't get to bed until close to 1 or so. When I woke up in the morning, I realized the headphones for my iPod were broken, so I thankfully had time to stop at the store and pick some up!

It was about this point I was really regretting my decision to stay out so late... I got to the race and there were TONS of people. It was nice to see all those people out for a run, but holy crowds! I met up with my cousin, who is a huge inspiration to me. She's had 4 kids and she's the fastest runner I know! I love her dearly, and I was soooo happy to see her. She told me that she wanted to run with me the whole way! I told her I didn't want to hold her back, but she insisted that she wanted to stay with me and run with me, and so I had a running partner. I was excited to run with her. I told her last year my goal was to run it in 1:15:00, and I ran it in 1:12:10. (woo hoooooooo!!!) She has one of those fancy schmance Garmin watches that tracks your mileage/distance/heart rate, etc, so she asked what pace I wanted to keep. I told her I just wanted to be at a 10:30 minute mile pace, and I just wanted to beat my time from last year.

Now this course is HILLY. The whole last mile + is uphill. Uphill, little straight away, up another hill, a little straight away, etc, until you get to the end which is up an incline. BAH. When we started out I felt GREAT, just running, enjoying the nice day. Karen told me it was probably because I had the beer. Hahaha. I raaaaaaaaaan like the wind. (Well, a slow breeze...) When I got towards the end I felt really nauseous, as I generally do. Adrenaline does odd things to you. I hate the finish of this race because it's misleading. There's these flags, and a pink line thing and then more flags (which would make you THINK you were at the finish, but you are sadly mistaken....), so I stopped for a small step, because I was so glad it was over, but then I realized it wasn't...... I saw one of my friends from Spinning class and he said, "Come on, Lea!!! YOU CAN DO IT!" Thank goodness for him, because it gave me the burst I needed to keep running and not pass out on the ground.

Finally the finish line!!!!!!!

I finished in 1:00:59.


So the moral of the story is, you can go out and have a beer with friends before a big race and still do better than you ever hoped. In fact, I'm going to make it a new tradition.
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