Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Hot Chocolate 15K Recap

I'm not gonna lie guys, I was actually pretty nervous for this race. Something about it being 2.3 miles more than I had ever run before, and the first race I would be doing by myself left me feeling a lot less confident than I did for my 10K

When my alarm went off at 5:15AM, I hopped out of bed, grabbed a protein bar, threw on my running clothes and headed for the door. 

But not before my 8 year old sister crawled out of bed to give me a good luck hug :)

I drove the 30 minutes it took to get to beautiful downtown San Diego.

The Hot Chocolate 15K is the third race I've done this year (heck yes, I can cross off a 2013 Bucket List item!). I can officially say that the organization for this race was outstanding. And the main reason for that is because of how efficiently everything was communicated.

It was made very clear to us that traffic and parking were going to be a nightmare the morning of the race. They suggested that we plan to arrive significantly earlier than our start time due to this. And because I was informed of this, I didn't mind waiting in the long row of cars to get to a parking spot! It was anticipated.

When we registered for the race, we were asked how long we thought it would take us to finish. Using our projected paces, the race crew organized us into corrals where we would group up to start the race. 

We were made aware that each corral would be starting 3 minutes after the one before, to ensure for a smooth run. Again, perfect communication!

Not only could we guess when our actual starting time would be, but the planning paid off. The flow of the starting line (and the entire race) went great! Even as we were waiting, everyone was in great spirits. 

Now I mentioned that this was my first race alone, but I quickly found that that wasn't the case. 

Running has become a huge source of intimate time with the Lord for me. With worship music pumping me up, and His beautiful creation surrounding me (San Diego and Santa Barbara are not too shabby of places to run, am I right?) it's hard to not be filled with His love. 

Everything about this race had me feeling God's presence. And for that, I am thankful. 

It was a beautiful reminder that we are never alone.

This race was packed with hills. 

And you know what guys? I loved it. I loved the challenge. 

Running is really an amazing thing. You get to feel how strong your entire body is. Your chest perfectly pacing those deep breaths that keep you going. Your arms, just the slightest bit tense, briskly moving to keep up with your legs. 

And your legs? Man. There's nothing like it. Going up a hill and feeling every muscle from your thigh and hamstring all the way down to the tips of your toes pushing you further and further towards that peak that you're dying to reach. 

And knowing that you can stop and walk, but hearing God tell you Just a little farther, darling. You got this.

It's beautiful, that's what it is.

Crossing that finish line and knowing I had just completed my longest and most challenging run to date? 


Not to mention, this was waiting for me:

Is that not the cutest/most delicious looking Finisher's Mug?

For those remembering I gave up chocolate for lent, I only had the banana :)

I am so thankful that I have taken up a love for running. 

But I want to tell you something, if you're reading this thinking I'm a natural runner, I'm not.

Case and point: this post.

"I'm gonna be real though, if I can do this, anyone can.

I went for 2 runs this past weekend, and I am literally in horrible shape.

I'm talking can't even run a mile straight without stopping to walk.

Total speed with all of the walking is about an 11 minute mile.

Looks like the break from the stress fracture took a toll, huh?

So here goes nothing!"

That was a little over 3 months ago guys. 

In 3 months I went from being unable to run a mile straight, finishing at an 11 min mile, to running 9.3 miles straight at a little over a 9 min mile. 

It's true, what I said. If I can do this, anyone can.


Mosby Hardin said...

This is so awesome love! I am so proud of you for overcoming the stress fracture and making this happen. You have been such an inspiration to me when it comes to running! Hopefully one day we can run together:)

Madalyn said...

LOVED this post!

I thought of you yesterday when I was running on the treadmil. My outter right shin is killing me when I run.. It might even be inflamed. Ugh. Any suggestions? I would hate to have lost all the progress I made.

ALSO, congrats on your run! Impressive time!!


L said...

You're inspirational friend!!! I wish you were here to help me beat my record on my 5K.

Anna said...

Congrats Amy, you made awesome time and this looks like it was such a fun race!

I appreciate you making me reflect on my own running today. It has been so hard to get back in the swing after my injury and it's inspiring to see how far you've come since yours.

This gives me much more motivation to keep working hard towards my first post-injury race in early May. You rock!!!

Jessi Spencer said...

I'm not a runner [[I know everyone says that, but I truly mean it. It's just not my thing.]] but I absolutely LOVE hearing running stories! It is motivational to grow my own strength [[I do yoga]] and find God in the midst of that.

Thanks for sharing and congratulations on your race! =]

Amy said...

So proud of you! i know how hard you worked for that moment! :)
Also that finishers mug, adorable!

courtney {splendid actually} said...

so happy to read your story today Amy! congratulations on a successful race!

Olivia said...

I'll say it again... you are such an inspiration!!!! I am determined to start running, hopefully it will be sooner rather than later! Congratulations on doing so well!

Jordan said...

CONGRATULATIONS! That is amazing! You are truly an inspiration to your readers. Loved reading this!

Evelien said...

You are amazing! Such a hero :)
This morning it was the first real sun of this spring and I really wanted to go outside for a run! But I couldn't find my sportsbra... I looked everywhere, I promise!! That's a legit reason not to go running, right?? :)

Ashley Beaudin said...


Melissa Jo said...

I've been SO incredibly lazy these last few months when I get home from work. and I MISS running, I miss that "high" place. I need to get back there... and SOON! I'm so proud of you my soul sister!

Leah said...

Congrats girl! That is great, and love how you've made this a time with you and God. So sweet!

Lauren {at} Life.Love.Lauren said...

The only time I was unsuccessful in giving something up for lent it was chocolate...whoops!

Lee Ann said...

Go Amy!!!! I love the feeling of pushing further than you have even gone. Congrats!!!! Reading this makes me want to lace up my shoes right this instant and go run. :)

Rach @ This Italian Family said...

I love what you wrote about us never being alone. Perfectly said. I can't believe how many people were there! And hey, great time, girl!!