Race Day Re-cap: Runner-up

Race Day Re-cap: Runner-up

I signed up for the East Bay 510k about two weeks before the race on a whim because I liked the shirt they posted that came with registering. (Yeah, that happened) I hadn’t done any short distances races yet this year and thought I was due for a short and speedy 5k to test my fitness at that level. As it turned out, my marathon training partner and I ended up scheduling our last long training run for the Chicago Marathon in a few weeks the Saturday before, a 20 miler no less. So I knew that my best 5k was not in the cards, but what I wasn’t ready for, was to place in the top three women!

This was a smaller local race with about 650 people running and walking the 5k, I approached the start line to get there early and check out the faster runners, I spotted Leilani, a girl who I had been following and friends with on Instagram, but we had never met in real life!! I was excited to give her a big hug and finally meet her in person and knew she was going to be up as one of the top contenders in the women’s division. Then i picked a spot a few rows back from the line and focused in on my race.

I was up near the front as the gun went off, and started the first quarter of a mile neck and neck with Leilani, I checked my watch and knew I had to dial back as trying to keep up with her was going to be impossible for me. I dialed back, but kept her in my sights. It was just her and I in the front until another girl passed me with a strong pace. That girl ended up finishing in 1st place and she was only 15! Around mile two, I was slowly dying and feeling the tiredness of my legs from the day before when I noticed Leilani start to slow down (I found out later, as I suspected, she was fighting off an injury). I passed her with one mile to go and knew I had to just hold my pace, but at any second I was waiting for her to push and pass me again. It was kind of thrilling, exhausting and motivating at the same time thinking about all this while running.

I crossed the finish line at 21:48 with a second place finish. For the first time in my whole running career I secured a podium spot in a race of any kind! I am the first to admit, this wasn’t a super competitive field and I know my time is far from “fast,” by some standards (I also know it’s super fast by others!) but that finish line feeling gets me every time and no matter what the distance is, I always try to put my all out on the course and last weekend I did just that and it came with small reward. 

The funny thing is, running for me, isn’t about winning anything. It never has been and it never will be. But I did get a huge sense of accomplishment crossing that line, I put in a lot of work for this sport, and you don’t always get a lot back on paper. I love getting new PRs and shaving on seconds on my mile time and encouraging others to believe in themselves the most and that is always enough for me. I love seeing in hard facts, numbers and statistics what you can achieve and how you can improve when you put in the work to something. Running is still about becoming the best version of me and I still have a lot of room for improvement, but this last weekend was just the self confidence boost I needed to reach for higher goals.

In love and running,

J



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International Running Adventures

International Running Adventures

Oh hey, hi! It’s been a while since I last posted, and really I don’t have any excuses except I really didn’t have much to report on. But after my weekend in Vancouver for SeaWheeze, I have some things to report on! First of all, Vancouver completely blew me away.

Thanks to Lululemon, I was gifted a free entry into its annual half marathon held in Vancouver, BC and couldn’t pass up an opportunity to run my first international race and a reason to visit Vancouver.

Race weekend started around 4am Friday morning when I was sleepily waking up for my early flight. My boyfriend, Nick, joined me on this trip across the boarder and went along to cheer me on and visit Vancouver for the first time as well. When we touched ground I was really bummed to see that the rumors were true, and the sky was super hazy as the smoke of forest fires nearby had crept into the air in Vancouver. I know the air quality of Vancouver is said to be one of the best, and I wanted to see the views! It was a bummer that quickly left my mind as I met up with the first of many of my concrete runners crew at the airport to grab a cab together to get downtown. Destination races are so much fun, partly because I get to see my runner friends from all over the country!! Continue reading “International Running Adventures”

The Speed Project ###.0 | Lessons Learned

The Speed Project ###.0 | Lessons Learned

We came to the start line at the Santa Monica Pier as 10 individual runners. 344 miles through city streets desert heat, and trails only lit by the stars and the moon, we were a family of runners intertwined and connected by this experience forever.

After I first watched a video of the first Speed Project race, I knew this was something I wanted to accomplish. I gravitated to this unsanctioned road race for it’s pure grit, the unknown, and the fact that it sounded so impossible and crazy. So when the call went out last fall to my Concrete Runners crew for willing participants to form a team, there was no doubt it in my mind I wouldn’t be a part of this. I blocked off my calendar and fit this into my finances without question. I knew how draining and exhausting the Hood to Coast 200-mile relay was, but I had no idea what I was about to get myself into by accepting a position on a 10 person team to relay-style-run our way from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. Continue reading “The Speed Project ###.0 | Lessons Learned”

2016 Running Recap

2016 Running Recap

With just a little over a week left of 2016, I wanted to take a moment to look back and recap some of my running highlights of the year. This was a hard list to make because 2016 was one of my most epic years of running to date. I set PRs in the Marathon, ½ Marathon, 12k, 5k, and 1 mile distances. I pushed myself to new limits that I never thought was possible… I ran over 1,000 miles this year for the first time ever, ran in 8 different states in addition to Mexico, and participated in some really cool fitness events including Wanderlust 108 and Dare to Bare. I hit so many running milestones and made so many amazing people along the way. There are seriously so many reasons to look back on 2016 and feel nothing but pride and accomplishment. Continue reading “2016 Running Recap”

New York City: Run Culture

New York City: Run Culture

Wow, first of all, I can’t believe it’s been a month since I ran the most epic race I’ve ever experienced! I still think back, look at photos, watch videos, and relive the moments that made the New York City Marathon so amazing. But aside from hosting the most amazing marathon races in the world, New York City has a pretty dope running culture and I was lucky enough to really check some cool events out while I was in town. Continue reading “New York City: Run Culture”

A Glimpse of 26.2 Miles Through the Concrete Jungle

A Glimpse of 26.2 Miles Through the Concrete Jungle

WOW. For those of you who have never ran or witnessed one of the greatest running events of the year that is the New York City Marathon (in my own opinion and I suspect others too, but I can’t be certain). Let me take this time to tell you a little bit about why this is probably the most epic race in the world. Continue reading “A Glimpse of 26.2 Miles Through the Concrete Jungle”

Lessons Learned on Course

Lessons Learned on Course

You know that saying “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss you’ll be among the stars”? Well, it’s been a few weeks since I crossed the finish line in Chicago and that quote has been something I’ve been thinking a lot about now that the rush of one marathon has settled and I start to reset my focus on the NYC marathon (and beyond) and think about my goals and expectations. Continue reading “Lessons Learned on Course”