Race To Prepare

Well, hello there!  Nice to be back!  I had every intention of posting about my weekend race yesterday, but I had one of those days.  I was on the go every minute, so exhausted from a full weekend, and something just had to give.  So when I finally came in around five yesterday evening, I threw on my sneakers. leashed up Max, and we headed out for a walk around the neighbor.  It was a perfect way to relax and treat myself after a hectic Monday.  It also gives me a great reason to link up for Treat Yourself Tuesday.

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Becky has sponsored this weekly link up as an effort to make sure we all take the time to take care of ourselves in the midst of our daily lives.  I love the idea behind this, and I’m definitely trying to participate as much as possible.  Having an excuse to treat yourself is A-OK with me!


Now since I have been talking about the Race to Prepare 5K for the last month and a half, I definitely owe you all a recap of it!  I’ll go ahead and give you a spoiler by saying that I am very happy with how it turned out.

First off, let me give you a little background on this event.  This was the first year for this race, and it was put on as a part of an annual Emergency Expo that happens in Poteau every year.  This year the organizers really wanted to begin growing the event, and they added a 5K as a part of that plan.  Because John is Mr. Community Involvement, he actually was recruited to be in charge of the race.  That’s the reason why I initially started thinking about doing it.  I figured I could support him and prove to myself I could actually run a 5K in the process!

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There was a 7:00 AM start time for the race, and John and I got up bright and early Saturday morning to take care of last minute details.  Let me just say that I think anything in the 5 o’clock hour on a Saturday should be illegal!


It is starting to feel like fall around here, and it was pretty chilly at the start line.  I was a little worried about the temperature because I’m not used to running in cold weather, and I was really afraid it was going to make a big difference.


Since it’s a first year race, it was very small and laid back which was nice.  We all lined up and took off around 7:05, and I felt like I started strong.  The route immediately took us down a hill, and I could tell I was flying.  Luckily, it only took me about thirty seconds to realize I was going way too fast, and I had to slow down or I would burn out.  I actually noticed that a few people who I know are faster and stronger runners than I am were behind me, and that was my clue to slow way down

IMG_1303We began climbing a really steep hill fairly early in the race, and I got about 3/4’s of the way up before I had to take my first little walking break.  I was bummed I had to take a break so early in, but this hill was a monster!

I had walked for about fifteen seconds and I was trying to amp myself up to take off again when I felt a pat on my back.  I looked around and a girl John works with (one of the faster and stronger runners!) was coming up behind me.  “Come on!  You can do it!  We’ve got a downhill coming we can recover on.”

That little motivation was all I need, and I so appreciate that she was there right when I needed it.  The next few kilometers felt great, and at one point I marveled at the fact that I was actually enjoying running for the first time in my life.

With less than 1K to go, I realized that I had a chance to break thirty minutes so I took my pace up a notch.  Unfortunately, about that time, I hit another hill.  Although it was nothing like the first one, it was enough that I wasn’t able to sustain that pace through the finish and I crossed the line at 30:30.


Yes, I wish I could have broken that thirty minute mark, but I am so stoked about how this race went.  I started my running journey two months ago, and the best I thought I could hope for was finishing a 5K in thirty-five minutes.  I felt strong throughout this race, and I’m so pumped that I shattered that arbitrary time limit I set for myself.  Maybe I can do this after all!

After the race, John and I went to breakfast at a local diner where I treated myself to some post-run carbs.


Then it was back to the Expo, where John competed in a fireman’s challenge and I helped the Junior Class run a booth as a fundraiser.


By the end of the day, this is how we both felt.


Although it was an exhausting weekend, I really finished it up with a tremendous sense of accomplishment.  Maybe it’s okay to be just a wee bit proud of myself?  Have a great evening!

What did you do this weekend?  Seriously, how cute is my fireman? :)

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9 thoughts on “Race To Prepare

  1. Carrie

    Natalie, you are a rockstar! Nice work! Runners are so friendly and encouraging, and it’s great you got to experience it firsthand. Running and racing is addicting, right? 😉

      1. Heidi Nicole

        I haven’t gone that crazy yet….

        And Chris says the same thing – he is surprised how much he is actually enjoying running now that he is doing it more often! Welcome to the dark side! 😛


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