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Last Saturday, my family participated in my first 5k! They’ve all walked in different 5k races together before, but…I wasn’t really into the racing scene until recently.  Ask my family.  I’ve hated walking my entire life, so running has always been completely out of the question.Until now.

So, I started the morning with a toasted English muffin slathered with some white chocolate peanut butter.  Yes, you read that right.  White chocolate peanut butter – two of my favorite things in the world combined into one!  I found it at Target and fell in love.

This particular race was super laid back, family-friendly, and even dog-friendly.  It was to benefit a humane society, so dogs were not only allowed, but most of the event was catered to them!  Each water station had kiddie pools for the dogs to jump in to cool off, the mile markers were shaped like little fire hydrants, and all of the volunteers had little dog poo bags to hand out to the owners.  All morning long, Brianna was pointing out each and every dog to us.  She was a very busy girl.

Marcia is due with baby #2 in August and still braved the heat to walk!  I love that my family loves me enough to agree to sign up for a race just for me.  I may be twenty-something and living on my own now, but I’m still the baby of the family and take full advantage of that fact! 😉

Brianna spent most of the race on her papa’s head.  My dad, sister, and brother-in-law opted to walk together, while my mom, and I spread out and ran/walked it.

The race was hard.  I’ve been using the Nike+GPS app on my phone for my runs and I adore it, because I have it programmed to tell me my pace every 1/4 mile.  I’ve never had any problems with it at all…until race day.  It was doing fine until I hit the first 1/4 mile mark.  It announced my pace and everything was good until about 30 seconds later when it announced, “Half mile completed.  3 minutes, 30 seconds.”  Uhhh…yeah right.  And then 30 seconds later, “3/4 mile completed.  4 minutes, 03 seconds.”  I wish.  And then I think it got back on track, but it definitely wasn’t reliable at that point, so I was left guessing.  Trapped in my own head.  Not a good thing.

I kept trying to compare myself to other racers, which turned out to be a pretty terrible way to run a race!  I would find a person that was running the perfect pace to stay with…and then they’d stop to walk.  And then people would pass me, I’d try to speed up, still not catch up to them, and end up feelings slow.  Then, somebody who had whizzed passed me earlier would start falling behind me and I’d feel like I was running too fast (as in, worried that I would burn out from improper pacing…not that I was actually running “too fast.”  I wish that was my problem!).  I just couldn’t find my happy medium. It was like a demoralizing yo-yo.

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All runs are hard, but with most runs, I can kind of get into a groove.  That definitely didn’t happen this time!  There was also the added difficulty of trying to avoid getting tangled in dog leashes and run around the few doggy landmines that the owners hadn’t stopped to clean up yet.

Despite the grooveless, puppy-laden laps, I still had a great time!  There was one street where the race looped up one side and back down the other and as I was going down the other side, my dad saw me and he and my sister and brother-in-law clapped and yelled and cheered me on.  Hands down, that was the best part of the race.  I ran for 95% of it, but stopped to walk for a minute or so somewhere in the last 1/4 mile.  I don’t think I would have stopped if I would have been able to see the finish line, but I had no clue how close or far I was from the end!

But I learned my lesson.  As soon as I stopped to walk, my mother zoomed past me.  The one who was supposed to be run/walking.  She ended up beating me by 22 seconds.  My race day snack was humble pie.  Just kidding!    She has totally earned it!  She may be a grandmother, but the woman leads a very active lifestyle!  She goes to the gym 6 days, swims, walks, does yoga, belly dances, and pretty much everything else under the sun!  She’s pretty amazing.   My final time was 37:02.  I’ll take it.

And a few minutes later, the rest of the family joined us!  Brianna’s finger is up her nose, because that’s where it likes to hang out these days and I’m pretty sure Marcia is excitedly exclaiming, “It’s Nana!”

We all get pretty excited about seeing my mom.  😉

I love my family.

After the race, they had a bunch of booths set up with water, snacks, sponsors, awards, and lots of dog adoption places!  This guy was mastiff compared to Brianna!  (Get it?  Massive?  Mastiff?  Yuk yuk yuk yuk…)

We spent awhile wandering around, falling in love with vizslas, drinking vanilla milk, and rounding up balloons for Brianna before heading out to go see my grandma for lunch (have I mentioned how much I love being in Colorado with so much of my family so close by?!).

All in all, it was a fantastic day and I can’t wait to sign up for and run another race!  I think I’ll stick to the laid back races for awhile.  That’s kinda how I roll.  😉