Friday, April 11, 2014

54:09

Seriously need this! via
Today marks 5 days since I finished my first 10K. I did it, y’all! After a rollercoaster of training, I followed through and crossed the finish line in less than 1 hour! And while this story isn’t as dramatic or inspiring as my very own Couch to 5K story, it’s the story of how I pushed myself to reach a personal goal and never looked back.


After making my new year’s resolutions for the year, I got straight to business and began searching for local races. I wanted to run a few 5K races, then a 10K or two, and maybe eventually a half marathon. Luckily for me, races are quite common in this part of Texas. You see, Austin has a large population of runners. Rain or shine, 100 or 30 degrees, they're still running, but I digress. During early January, I was looking into a 5K when a friend suggested we run the Capitol 10K together. I was hesitant at first, seeing as how I'd never run more than 4 miles; but with 3 months to go, I definitely had the time to train. With a Go Big or Go Home thought lingering in my head, I decided to do it. After all, this would bring me closer to my ultimate goal of running a half marathon. But after training for a couple days, circumstances changed and we were no longer running the race together. That was that.

Although I’d trained only a short while, I’d already pushed myself further each run. Running was still something new to me, but in order to reach my goals, I needed to continue. I trained by myself the first time, so why not do it again? Thanks to the world wide web, there’s plenty of tips and programs to help novices like myself, reach those higher goals of running longer distances – without an expensive trainer or running group. So I did my research, wrote down new goals, and signed up for my first 10K.

I’m not going to lie and say my training went according to plan, because trust me, it didn’t. Life happens, and so does the weather. The polar vortex came and went and came again, way too many times if you ask me. This is Texas people, not Alaska. And so I forced myself to train on the treadmill as often as possible. Side note: Netflix is always a good idea, especially on the treadmill. Eventually though, I became tired of the treadmill and went on a mini running hiatus. I know what you’re thinking, probably not good when you’re training for a race. Before I knew it, March had come around and I was barely reaching 5 miles. With some serious self-discipline, I got back in routine. I practiced and practiced, and eventually ran a practice 10K in 58:45!

During the last week of training, I took it easy to save my legs. I stretched everyday, drank lots of water, and even practiced yoga(new favorite exercise!) a couple times. To prevent a repeat of my 5K freak out, I prepared ahead of time. The only thing in my way, early morning thunderstorms. Just perfect. And like clockwork, I woke to a strike of thunder and the rain pouring. Why, why, why? A couple hours, I awoke to my alarm and the sound of a light drizzle outside - yay! I hopped out of bed, stretched, dressed, brushed my teeth and drove straight to the race.

For a gal who's late to everything, arriving early sure had its perks. I sat in my car and mentally prepared talked myself out of wearing my jacket and poncho, I even left my headphones behind. Who needs Pandora when you have live bands playing at your race? That's right, live music and it's not even a Rock 'n' Roll race! Eventually, I walked to the starting line and joined the thousands of runners. This was it, y'all. The gun had shot, I passed the starting line, and the rest was history.

Look at that weather!
As I've mentioned before, running is a time to clear my mind and take in my surroundings. Besides the never-ending hills and live music, the only part I remember was the end. I had one mile to go and could literally see the finish line across the lake. All I could think was one more mile, one more mile and then out of no where - "I've got it, the title for my next blog post(coming soon)!" I laugh now, but honestly those blogging thoughts got me through the last mile. As I approached the finish line, I had one last goal in mind - sprint to the end! It was definitely my most memorable moment of the race. I put everything I had left into this sprint and seconds later, I passed the finish line. Final Time: 54:09!


Words can't express my feelings once I crossed the finish line, I was speechless. I only wanted food and water, to find my madre, and check my results. And that's exactly what I did, hence the overload of food/drinks in my hands. Knowing that I was competing against thousands didn't leave me very hopeful of my rankings, but boy was I proud! Beating my record by 4 minutes(with hills), totally gives me bragging rights, am I right? After all the time and miles put into my training, I finally did it, and all by myself.

If you made it to the end, you're a serious trooper. This may be the longest post I've ever written. My story is personal, and it took a little longer to write, but it's honest and it's me. To the one who inspired me to run this race, thank you. Reaching your goals isn't always easy, but you can do it. What I've learned is that it's half self-discipline and half believing in yourself. Are there any goals you're working towards? Any new runners looking to run your first race? Whatever it is, say yes and do it! There's a good chance you won't regret it. Happy Friday, fellow dreamers!

2 comments :

  1. So proud of you, girl! And being early?? Love it. Also love the goodies at the end of races. So many you can barely hold them! ;-)

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  2. Thanks so much Sharon :)

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Thanks for reading, you've really made my day!