A few weeks my sister asked if I would run an evening run with her in Durham and of course I said YES! I was a little nervous because I had never ran an evening run before but how could I turn down a race?!?!
I wanted to have a pretty chill day so I could save energy for this 5k but ended up camp shopping with a co-worker, which takes a lot of time and effort. That was an adventure in itself. We than decided to swing by the Cheesecake Factory that was right next door for a slice of cheesecake for dessert… I mean lunch. I ordered my all time favorite kind, mango key lime! Who knew those two flavors would taste so good together in cheesecake form?!?! It’s so delicious! Too bad I’m allergic to mango…. as I tell my Mom though, ‘I like to live on the edge!’ It wasn’t a bad reaction I had, nothing a little bit of Benadryl didn’t take care of. :) **Just kidding mom, I’m taking care of this situation**
After having our delicious, not-so-good for you lunch we met my family at a vegan restaurant in downtown Raleigh called Fiction Kitchen. My aunt and uncle were in town for a few days from Florida and they rarely come up this way to visit so it was really nice to have the time to visit with them. The food at this place was so good! I can’t even express into words how amazing it tasted! As soon as we arrived my family had already ordered appetizers and luckily saved us some! There were sweet potato chips and than crackers with different types of dip. As a main dish I ordered a tofu dish that was cooked perfectly!
I was already pretty full by the time dinner was over but than came the dessert menu and as my family says, ‘your dessert stomach is a whole other stomach!’… I can’t argue with that! Plus all the desserts are vegan as well so how bad can they REALLY be for you?? I ordered a peanut butter cheesecake which was, needless to say, amazing! It was not as thick as regular cheesecake but I’m sure it was heaps healthier for you (Is there such thing as a ‘healthy cheesecake’?).
After dinner we met my sister at the race sight, where I tried really sneakily to change out of my nice clothes and into my running clothes in the empty parking deck where we parked… than my sister pointed out that there are probably security cameras in the deck. Oops.
Once we got to the start line I really had pee but didn’t have enough time to go inside the baseball stadium before the start of the race so I decided that I would not necessarily be running to the finish line on this run but rather running to the finish line because of the restroom! Gave me flashbacks of the Turkey Trot I ran a few years ago where I drank a cup of coffee right before the race… it was my best 5k time ever!
The race started while the sun was setting, which was a nice sight, though it got darker faster than I thought it would.
By the time we hit mile one the sun had already disappeared and we were running in the dark only following the glow from the glow sticks lighting the path.
Last week I had an infection on my left leg that was giving me pain for awhile there and seemed to start bothering me as soon as I hit mile one…. this is where I was glad I was only running a 5k and not a half marathon. Shortly after that I got a text from a friend asking how I was doing and I responded with this photo saying, “I’m in pain but I’m still going!!!”
It all worked out in the end and I fought through it with little pain at the finish. As the sun continued to set it got harder to take photo, so apologies for the lack in photo quality here. I had brought two packages of glow sticks and was so excited to use them for this evening run but soon realized that they are old and didn’t work anymore!! Very disappointing! LUCKILY there were glow sticks that fell off runners while they were running so my sister and I picked them up as we ran the 3.1 miles to the finish line. The pro to not being in the front of the line!
Along mile two there was a neat bridge that we could see the bikers peddling across as we ran under it. The lights on the side said ‘Habitat!’ which is what this run was all about. Raising money and building for Habitat for Humanity.
My sister rarely runs races so when she does I make a big deal out of it and run it with her and push her to run to the finish with me. This is what she looked like close to mile three. So close and yet so far away for her!
I was all pumped on all kinds of energy (probably from the TWO pieces of cheesecake I had earlier in the day and the Starbucks coffee I drank) so I was ready to keep going and finish strong. Sarah on the other hand was struggling and started slowing down which is when I started counting down milage until the beer. “Only half a mile until beer…. only 1/4th of a mile until beer… I can hear the finish line… that’s where the beer is!” She seemed to speed up a bit than. :P
As soon as I saw the finish line I turned to my sister and said, “LETS SPRINT!!!” She quickly said, “Nope! You go ahead and I’ll meet you there” so I did just that. After crossing the finish line I tried to get a photo of her running through the finish but there were five or six other finishers who ran right in front of her!
I have to admit that I kept running after I crossed the finish line and went straight to the port-a-jons! What a relief! Than we hit up the after race munchies, typical bananas and bagels with gatorade and water. Once we walked to the next block though we found the beer and the REAL food! A lot of the restaurants who sponsored the race were out handing out food so I got some chips and salsa from Moe’s (one of the best burrito places ever!!!!) which went great with my cup of celebratory beer! I also saw some people walking around with loco pops (a local popsicle company) but I never did find their tent.
I’m so excited that my friend from work got to come out and watch me run! It was great to have her support and to hang out with her and catch up after the race!
As always I’d also like to thank my running buddy, Sara, who I was paired with through ‘I Run 4′. She encourages me everyday to keep pushing through and working hard in my training. This race I didn’t only run for you, Sara, but so did my sister! :)