Did you know yesterday was National Running Day? I love a good pseudo-holiday. 🙂 Since it was National Running Day, I thought I’d share some information about my running history and my next race.
Believe it or not, I started running when I was about 10. I completed my first 5K, which was a fun turkey trot race, when I was in fifth grade.
A nice closed eyes shot. My friend Logan, whose wedding was a few weeks ago, is on the far left.
After that I ran sporadically until 7th grade when I tried out for the middle school track team. I made the team and loved running with other people. Middle school track is actually how I met my best friend Jenna, whom I have been running with ever since. My experience on the track team confirmed what I already knew: I am a distance runner. I was terrible at sprinting but decent at the 800m and the mile. To this day, I have great endurance, but I’m just not built for or a fan of short distance.
In high school I had the opportunity to get back to longer distances on the cross country team. Running cross country in high school was one of my best decisions. I loved the camaraderie with my teammates. The team went on overnight trips for invitationals, which were always fun, and we had a pasta party every week before our regular meets. I was also in great shape, which helped during my spring lacrosse season as well. It turned out that I was a decent runner, too. My PR for the 5K was 21:01. Unfortunately, between lacrosse and cross country I ran into some overuse injuries. I had plantar fasciitis, which was quite painful, followed by trouble with my IT band. I recovered with the help of orthotics (which I still wear for my super high arches) and physical therapy.
Me and some of my cross country friends during junior year of high school. I’m second from the right, and Jenna is in the middle.
I went through phases of running during college and graduate school. In my freshman year at UNC I trained for a half marathon. During the 11th week of my 12 week training, I hurt my IT band again and wasn’t able to race. It was such a bummer. I ran very sporadically after that until my senior year of college when I trained for the Raleigh City of Oaks half marathon. I was proud that I finally did it, and I finished in just under two hours.
My cousin and I after finishing the City of Oaks half marathon.
I usually ran 2 to 3 times per week in graduate school and trained for another half marathon in the spring of my first year. Derek actually decided to run it with me. Although we enjoyed the time spent together, Derek has decided that it was his first and last half marathon. 🙂 He’s just not a distance runner. I’m really proud of him for giving it a try though!We ran the Run the Bluegrass half marathon in Lexington, Kentucky. It was hilly, but it was the most beautiful race I’ve ever done. The course runs through a bunch of horse farms. At one point a horse even ran along side us behind the fence! It was a ton of fun, and I we finished in about 2 hours and 15 minutes.
Derek and I finishing the race together.
My brother ran the Bluegrass half marathon with us, too. He’s actually gotten really into running over the past few years.
My brother Jared, me, and Derek at the race.
After my last half marathon, I decided not to train for another one while I was engaged. I thought wedding planning, finishing graduate school, job hunting, AND training for another half would be too much at once. In fact, I got so busy that running sort of fell by the wayside for a few months. Now I’m slowly but surely building back my mileage, and I’m running 4 to 5 days per week. It’s been over a year since my last half marathon, and I’ve been itching to get back into it. As if on cue, my brother texted me a couple weeks ago and asked if I wanted to run a FULL marathon with him in October. I told him I wasn’t in shape enough to train for the full, but I was up for the half marathon at the same race. I’m excited to say that I will be running the 4 Bridges Half Marathon on October 19th. My brother will be running the 7 Bridges Marathon, and I’m pumped for him. I can’t believe he’s doing a full. How awesome!
Between now and October I will periodically post my weekly workouts, and I will post my half marathon training plan when I start it in late July or early August. Until then, I’ll be working on building back my mileage base.
Reader Questions: Have you ever ran in a race before? If so, what is your favorite race?