We came. We saw. We conquered… well sort of.
Long distance running and myself have never been friends. It was only after my friend Mollie encouraged me that I could run longer than a mile on the treadmill that I had set myself a goal for 2015. I would run in a marathon. 26.2 miles. I had my heart set on it.
When 2015 strolled on in I was running around New York City falling in love with every block I walked while promising to myself that I would someday move there. The next week happened and I was back in good ‘ole Laguna Hills getting into trouble and revisiting some old stomping grounds that I probably should have left alone. I fell back in love with an old friend of mine, beach volleyball. I found myself down on southside of the HB pier with the babes three or four times a week diving in the sand and getting darker and darker with every sunny day.
My love for running and stamina had started drifting. After one fateful day at the gym I got the reboot I needed and mostly because I noticed that those spandex were a bit more snug then I remembered.I drove straight home and started researching marathons I could run. As I started looking up dates and maps the reality dawned on me. I was nowhere mentally or physically ready to run a marathon.At this moment I had to make a decision whether or not I would suck it up and at least attempt a marathon or just log off the computer and call it a day.
Instead I decided that I would start slow. Slow and steady win the race don’t they? I signed up for the Huntington Beach Spring Equinox 10k. I ran/walked the Race for the Cure 5k in my younger years and my only memories was a lot of huffing, puffing, and swearing I would never do any long distance race ever again. Here I was signing up to run 6.2 miles. What in the world was I thinking? I found a running plan online that broke up the training between eight weeks. I bought one of those big calendars and wrote the miles I was to run everyday so that I would be conditioned enough to make the 10k a breeze! I was determined. I was strong. I was driven. I was motivated. FOR THE FIRST WEEK. Alright, even that is an exaggeration… more like the first three days.
After the motivation dried up, my saving grace came to my rescue. Miss Alyssa Moyer decided that she would run it with me. That night she signed up, paid the fee, and committed to take on the daunting 6.2 miles. Feeling the much needed encouragement I was back on track to run the 10k. We were determined. We were strong. We were driven. We were motivated. For about the next three days. I sense there is a pattern.
Fast forward six weeks and the race day was upon us. Since I was able to write this I clearly survived. We trucked along the 6.2 miles and crossed the line. I learned a few things along the six miles. Here below are six things I learned for every mile.
Running with a friend made all the difference. I always thought running with someone would be distracting and I was right. But it was exactly the type of the distraction I needed to stay out of my own head.
Music choice is everything. We rocked out the whole time to Disney songs from Tangled to The Princess and The Frog. We sang out loud and surprisingly the singing pumped us up instead of taking our breath away.
Make friends that are in the race! Granted that we were running pretty slow… we ran past… or rather our new friends ran past us a few times and every time we made a passing it was cheers and smiles.
Secretly try to beat someone else. After reading many articles on running they always talk about beating your own goals. When your goal is just to make it to the race on time and to not bail then after that you have to set another goal. This was simple for us, our goal was to beat a runner right in front of us. We ran the whole way while she opted for the sprint and walk tactic. We had finally passed her and on our way to the home stretch with her far behind us. Then out of the blue she sprinted past us and beat us. We were left bitter and in her dust.
Stretch. I know this is actually common sense but because we were running late we had no time to stretch. I felt tight the whole entire run. I think that even days after I am still paying for that mistake.
Keep a pace. Even though the sprinting and walking lady beat us, I was particularly proud that we didn’t stop running once. We kept a solid jogging pace and within a little over an hour we were able to finish the race, cross the line, and receive the coveted HB Spring Equinox 10k medal.
At the end of the day we felt extremely accomplished and are signing up for a half marathon in May!!! Although 13.1 miles is a big difference from 6.2 I think now that we know what to expect from a race we canbe better prepared! Oh and here is a picture of the guy who lapped us four times while juggling… WHILE JUGGLING.
No big deal.